16 May

 

16 May 1975: Sikkim became part of Indian democracy

Between 1973 and 1975, the “anti-monarchical voice” became stronger not only in Sikkim but even internationally, courtesy Lhendup Dorjee’s wife, journalist Elisha Marie. Owing to protests and demonstrations, the anti-Chogyal government led by Lhendup Dorjee, sought India for a ‘deeper’ democratic association. India, who was ready for the new association, rushed into organising a referendum to ‘absorb’ Sikkim. This referendum found about 97.5% supporters, who were eager to end the monarchical administration. Thereafter, the Chogyal dynasty was abolished and Sikkim became the 22nd state of India with complete democratic rights and privileges. Kazi Lhendup Dorjee became the first Chief Minister of the newly formed Himalayan state of India.

In conclusion,  even though “Sikkim lost its identity as a tiny Himalayan Kingdom,” the people finally got their “democratic rights,” for which they fought for so long.

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