The people of Ladakh have submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding a Union Territory status for the region.
“On behalf of the tribal people of Ladakh, the heads representing the Buddhist communities, the Shia community, the Sunni community and the Christian community Leh hereby appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for grant of Union Territory Status with legislature for the frontier region,” a memorandum submitted by four major organisations submitted to the Prime Minister said.
The President Ladakh Buddhist Association (LBA), Anjuman Imamia, President Christian Community Leh and Moin Ul Islam of Leh district, said they submitted the memorandum to the Prime Minister last week.
“Ladakh was once an independent Himalayan kingdom. The political history of Ladakh dates back to 930 A.D. when several small, sovereign principalities outlying the Western Himalayas were integrated and given a unified polity by Lha-Chen-Palgigon.
“Ladakh as an independent kingdom gained political status during 15th–16th century when the Namgyal dynasty came into power,” it said.
The memorandum said that the state of Jammu and Kashmir, the “territorial limits of which never formed a natural geopolitical entity in its real sense”, still “suffers from geopolitical crises and disorder”.
“Indian Nationalism remained a dominant ideological creed and became a rallying force among the Ladakhis to fight back the Pakistanis and the Chinese who made frequent bids of conquer our land in 1948, 1962, 1965, 1971 and 1999 wars,” said the the memorandum submitted to the Prime Minister.
“The people of Ladakh always stood for national unity and integrity of the country. We always supported the Government in Delhi, irrespective of the political party in power,” said the memorandum
“We are left with no choice but to reiterate our longstanding demand for granting Union Territory status to Ladakh, which would guarantee us an administrative set-up to run our own affairs and safeguard our interests. It is absolutely erroneous to equate Kashmir valley with the rest of the State. Ladakh constitutes 69.6 % of the total J&K territory with a distinct geo-political and geo-cultural identity of its own,” it said.
The memorandum strongly conveyed the desires and beliefs of the people of ladakh that a Union Territory with an elected legislature is the only instrument through which the present political ambivalence can be ended and they can fulfill their aspirations.
The memorandum, promulgated the contentions of the people of ladakh and said it placed its “Trust in your (the governmnet’s) sagacity and urge upon you to fulfill our demand without any further delay.”
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