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Local leaders in Ladakh announce mass agitation for statehood

Local leaders in Ladakh announce mass agitation for statehood

Prominent local leaders in Ladakh on Saturday announced a mass agitation to press for full statehood and constitutional safeguards. They accused the BJP-led union government of not taking the issues and concerns of the people of Ladakh seriously. The strike will be accompanied by public rallies and mass contact programmes in Leh and Kargil districts.

The Leh-based apex body of People's Movement for 6th Schedule and the Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) has called for a general strike on December 6 to draw attention to their four main demands - full statehood, one more Lok Sabha seat, two Rajya Sabha seats, and constitutional safeguards for the region. A special recruitment drive for the local youth to fill up over 10,000 vacancies in Ladakh is also among the demands.

Chairman of the apex body and former MP Thupstan Chhewang and co-chairman of KDA Asgar Ali Karbalai was speaking at a press conference after the third round of talks. Representatives of Kargil and Leh districts joined hands on August 1, 2021, to seek common goals. Karbalai said that the entire Ladakh region is united in support of their jointly chalked out four-point agenda.

Both organisations were formed after the August 5, 2019 development when the Centre abrogated the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated it into union territories of J-K and Ladakh. The KDA was not in favour of the UT status.

Karbalai told the media that it has been nearly three months since the delegations of the two bodies met the union minister of state for home Nityanand Rai in Leh and raised their demands, but there has been no headway.

The only move from the Centre was accepting the demand for issuance of Ladakh Resident Certificate at par with the previously held permanent resident certificate to facilitate recruitment in government jobs.

He added that the Kargil Buddhist Association has also joined the KDA, and they are hopeful that the local leadership will see reason and become part of the joint alliance in the near future.

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TAGS:#LadakhAbrogation of Article 370J and K
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