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Reddy-led panel on Ladakh to also have Kargil representatives

The committee is expected to discuss and address concerns regarding protection of land, culture, language and jobs in the region following abrogation of Article 370.

Written by Deeptiman Tiwary | New Delhi |
Updated: July 3, 2021 8:11:18 am
G Kishan Reddy

The Ministry of Home Affairs is in the process of forming a committee under MoS Home G Kishan Reddy with representatives from both Leh and Kargil — to give adequate representation to political leaders from both the areas in matters associated with Ladakh.

The committee is expected to discuss and address concerns regarding protection of land, culture, language and jobs in the region following abrogation of Article 370.

Sources said the committee will have chairmen of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Councils of both Leh and Kargil apart from other stakeholders from the two regions and senior MHA officials.

The committee had been announced in January, but despite meetings with Ladakh representatives, it remained a work in progress. In January, a delegation from Ladakh had met Home Minister Amit Shah but considering the lack of representation from Kargil, a separate meeting with representatives from the district was held by Reddy on Thursday.

“When the committee was being formed earlier, Leh sent a long list of representatives which the home ministry wanted to be pruned. Now, discussions are on to have a smaller committee with representatives from both regions. Home Secretary may be part of the committee. We hope it will be formed soon,” said Asghar Ali Karbalai, co-chairman of Kargil Democratic Alliance, which held a meet with Reddy on Thursday.

The KDA, a coalition of political and civil society representatives from Kargil district, has demanded revocation of August 5, 2019 decisions and full statehood for Ladakh region. Leh, notably, has changed its demand from being included in the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution to being given a legislature as a UT.

In January this year, the MHA had announced it would form a committee under G Kishan Reddy to find a solution to issues associated with preservation of Ladakh’s land, culture and language apart from demands from the region to have it included under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.

“A meeting was held today under the chairmanship of the Union Home Minister Amit Shah, wherein it was decided that in order to find an appropriate solution to the issues related to language of Ladakh, culture of Ladakh and conservation of land in Ladakh, a committee will be constituted under the leadership of Sh. G.Kishan Reddy, MoS (Home). The committee would comprise of members of the delegation who met the Hon’ble Home Minister today, elected members from Ladakh, members of the LAHDC Council and ex-officio members representing the Government of India and the Ladakh administration,” a statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had said then.

The announcement had come after a 10-member delegation from Ladakh had then met Home Minister Amit Shah at his North Block office. Sources said that the delegation did not have representation from Kargil.

“In view of the difficult geographical conditions and strategic importance of Ladakh, all the representatives expressed their concern with respect to conservation of language, culture and land of Ladakh, participation of the people of Ladakh in its development, protection of employment and changes in the demography of Ladakh region,” the MHA had said then.

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