Seeking “complete autonomy” from Kashmir’s administrative set up, the two Autonomous Hill Councils of Leh and Kargil have separately passed resolutions demanding separate a division for the Ladakh region.
The Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Leh, unanimously passed a resolution to this effect on December 1, while its counterpart in Kargil passed a similar resolution, signed by all its 29 councillors, on December 6.
On Friday, Chief Executive Councillor (CEC) of Leh’s LAHDC, Jamyang Tsering Namgial told The Indian Express that “we want complete administrative autonomy from Kashmir”.
Namgial alleged that Ladakh has been “neglected by successive state governments and we want to be free from their administrative hold”. Currently, Ladakh region forms a part of the Kashmir Division of Jammu and Kashmir.
Claiming that the over 400 kilometre distance between Leh and J&K’s summer capital Srinagar makes it an “impractical” set up for the region, Namgial said: “J&K gets funding for three regions — Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.
However, Ladakh has to constantly fight for resources from Kashmir. For example the Centre approved Rs 50 crore for Pashmina Development last year, we are yet to see those funds.”
In a special General Council meeting, the LAHDC Leh also passed the resolution put forth by councillor Phunchok Dorjey stating, “The region has remained backward in terms of education, development and in all other fields. The problems of the region have never been addressed till date with the present set up, and for the equal and even development of the region, a separate division be created.”
Members of both councils separately met Governor Satya Pal Malik and his advisors in Jammu to put forth the demand for a separate administrative division for the region.
Taking exception to former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti’s remarks seeking separate administrative divisions for Pir Panjal region and Chenab Valley, Namgial said she is creating a “hurdle” in the realisation of the the aspirations of the people of Ladakh.