Blow for BJP as Ladakh MP Thupstan Chhewang quits party, Parliament

In a major setback to the BJP in the Ladakh region ahead of the parliamentary elections scheduled for next year, the party’s lone Lok Sabha member and its tallest leader Thupstan Chhewang on Thursday resigned from both the primary membership of the saffron party and as Member of Parliament. The BJP, however, claimed that he had resigned from active politics because he wanted to join spiritualism. In his resignation letter, widely circulated on the social media, addressed to state BJP president Ravinder Raina, Chhewang said he was resigning from the…

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Jamyang Namgyal elected as Leh Council CEC by BJP

Against the backdrop of a major debacle of the party in the recently held civic elections in the Ladakh region, the BJP on Friday sprang a surprise and elected its young district party president Jamyang Tsering Namgyal as the new Chief Executive Councillor (CEC) of the powerful Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Leh. In a special meeting, the general council elected Martselang councillor Namgyal as the new CEC and Chairman of the Leh Council unopposed. Namgyal, 34, is the youngest CEC of the Leh Council. Deputy Commissioner and Chief…

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Cancer rates spiral in Ladakh due to UV rays, Sedentary lifestyle

The rough terrain, the snow-capped peaks, the winding roads and monasteries – the Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir is the abode of nature’s raw and untouched beauty. The region might be a haven for adventure travellers, but all is not well for the local residents. The high altitude, exposure to excessive ultraviolet (UV) rays, lack of oxygen and the sedentary lifestyle of the locals are leading to a rise in cancer cases, particularly gastrointestinal (GI) and of the skin, according to medical experts from New Delhi’s premier All India…

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Leh school to raze ‘Rancho wall’ inspired by 3 Idiots, and ban entry of tourists

The local Druk Padma Karpo School, which shot to fame after it featured in the Aamir Khan-starrer “3 Idiots”, has decided to raze the ‘Rancho wall’ and ban the entry of tourists as the authorities felt it was becoming a distraction for students. The wall was shot in a scene when one of the characters, Chatur, tries to urinate on it and gets electrocuted by an ingenious invention of schoolchildren. The school later painted it the wall, which became a picture spot for tourists. “The movie gave a lot of…

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Cloudburst wreaks havoc in Leh

A cloudburst on Wednesday night wreaked a havoc in several villages of Leh district of the Ladakh region. According to reports, the cloudburst caused extensive damage in Saboo, Shey Stakmo and Stakna villages of Leh district. Houses, link roads, irrigation canal and several vehicles were destroyed. However, there was no report of any loss of human life. Sources said the maximum damage was caused at Saboo village, about 10 km from Leh town. “Fields and an irrigation canal were affected by the cloudburst in Stakna village. The link road from…

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Five year long social boycott between Muslims and Buddhists ended in Zanskar

A five year long social boycott between Muslims and Buddhists at Padum Zanskar ended after Buddhist spiritual leader Dali Lama visited the area. The social boycott between the two religious communities ended on Sunday when an important meeting was held under the chairmanship of Dalia Lama at Duzing photang Zanskar. The meeting was called for resolving the long pending issues between the two communities of Zanskar Valley i.e Buddhist and Muslim of Zanskar since past five years. During the meeting, the members decided to form a peace committee which will…

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Governor NN Vohra meets Dalai Lama in Leh

Governor NN Vohra, who visited Leh on Tuesday, called on His Holiness the Dalai Lama at the latter’s residence at Jive-tsal Choglamsar. They both interacted on the growing tensions across the world. During his interaction with the Governor, the Dalai Lama stressed on the importance of debate and discussion to reconcile on opposing viewpoints and study of philosophical texts to cultivate an atmosphere of tolerance and respect for all religions. He prayed for peace and prosperity in the world. The Governor was accompanied by his Advisers, Chief Secretary and Principal…

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J&K Govt will lease land to Indian Army for firing range in Kargil

The Jammu and Kashmir government has begun process to lease out 71,238 acres land to the army for field firing and artillery practice in Kargil district. The state government, in a notification, has asked the public that any objections in this regard may be communicated to the Kargil District Magistrate within a period of two months. “In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (3) of section 9 of the Maneuvers, Field Firing and Artillery Practice Act, 1938, a notice is hereby given that the Government of Jammu and Kashmir…

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Ladakh in festive mood ahead of PM Modi’s visit

Festive mood has gripped the Ladakh region ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Leh on Saturday. The Prime Minister is scheduled to join the 100th birth anniversary celebrations of Kushok Bakula Rinpoche, the architect of modern Ladakh, and to lay the foundation stone of the Asia’s longest (14.2-km) bi-directional Zojila tunnel, connecting Kashmir’s Sonmarg with the Gumri area in Kargil district, through remote control. Since taking over the reins of the country, this will be the second visit of the Prime Minister to the strategically important Ladakh region…

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Narendra Modi to lay foundation stone of Zojila tunnel on May 19

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of Asia’s longest bi-directional Zojila tunnel, connecting Kashmir’s Sonamarg with the Gumri area in Kargil district, on May 19 during his visit to Ladakh. The 14.15-km tunnel project, to be executed by M/S IL&FS Transportation Networks Ltd, holds strategic and socio-economic importance for Ladakh. First, the project will help India keep a check on the growing influence of China and Pakistan in Ladakh. The tunnel will not only meet the strategic requirements of the nation, but will also reduce the travel…

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