LADAKH ISSUE (Syllabus: GS Paper 2 - Polity)

News-CRUX-10     31st August 2023        
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Context: The Leh Apex Body (LAB) and Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) said that no one has the right to snatch legislative powers from the people of Ladakh and they will continue to strive for statehood and the implementation of Sixth Schedule in the newly-formed Union territory.


Demand proposed by Ladakh

  • The Leh Apex Body (LAB) and the Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) has jointly put forward a four-point agenda to drive the agitations in the UT of Ladakh as follows:
    • Statehood for Ladakh
    • Safeguards under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution
    • Formation of Public Service Commission and job reservation for Ladakh youth
    • Creation of two separate parliamentary constituencies for Leh and Kargil
  • The LBA’s demand for statehood marks a sharp departure from the long-held position of Ladakhi Buddhists to be governed directly by the central government.
    • This is because after Ladakh was declared a UT, people claimed to have lost constitutional protection on land, employment and democratic decision-making.
  • The LBA and KDA leaders complained that the new UT administration, governed by bureaucrats appointed by Centre has hijacked the space for political consultation and consent.
  • The demand from the local tribal communities in Ladakh is to extend the provisions of the Sixth Schedule to the region.
  • This was primarily driven by concerns over the protection of tribal rights and the preservation of the unique cultural identity of the local communities.


Current administration in Ladakh

  • Ladakh was granted Union Territory status in 2019, following the bifurcation of the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two separate Union Territories.
  • The administration of Ladakh is currently governed by the Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh and an elected Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC).