Skip to main content
xYOU DESERVE INDEPENDENT, CRITICAL MEDIA. We want readers like you. Support independent critical media.

J&K: Ladakh Admin Draws Flak for Attempting to Wreck Omar Abdullah's Visit

Anees Zargar |
Abdullah accused the UT administration of being “insecure” as the former chief minister claimed he was being dissuaded from visiting the region.
Flights, Tourism in Kashmir Not a Sign of Normalcy: Omar Abdullah

Image Courtesy: PTI

Srinagar: National Conference’s vice-president Omar Abdullah, who is currently touring the union territory of Ladakh, accused the UT administration of being “insecure” as the former chief minister claimed he was being dissuaded from visiting the region.

Abdullah, who has been on a two-day visit to Ladakh UT since Monday, said that his party has an important role in the region.

We represent people’s emotions and aspirations, and we will continue to represent them. We will participate in the elections. Our party is part of the unified body formed in Kargil, and my colleagues are playing their part,” he said during a presser on Tuesday.

He added that the central government has not successfully divided the people of Jammu, Kashmir, and Ladakh despite drawing boundaries.

The visit of the National Conference leader was heeded by many in the region after Abdullah said that he was not allowed to stay at Dak Bungalow in Drass and use a public address system after several attempts were being made to thwart his visit.

I have served as the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir for six years, but I do not understand these decisions. It should not matter much, but they seem anxious for no reason. We convinced them that we were coming. Otherwise, they were telling me not to come,” Abdullah later said during a party address.

Abdullah’s visit also marked three years of division of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir. A Union Territory Foundation Day was observed at the district headquarters in Leh and Kargil on Monday.

Abdullah accused the local administration of being unnecessarily sensitive towards his visit. He said he failed to understand the move arguing that if the decision taken on August 5, 2019 – when Jammu and Kashmir were stripped of their special status and divided into two UTs -- was welcomed by the residents, then the authorities should not be afraid of anything.

The former chief minister of the erstwhile J&K also took a dig at the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) for failing to secure the region from a supposed threat from China.

Why so much fear? There (Ladakh), you could not stop China; you didn’t send them back. We are only going from Srinagar to Kargil via Drass, and you are telling us not to come,” Abdullah added.

NC’s spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar termed the action from the Ladakh administration as “petty” and “desperate”.

The pettiness and desperation of the Ladakh Administration. On his visit to Drass, our leader was stopped from entering Dak Bungalow; Drass was not given access to the Public Address System there. How low will they stoop in trying to keep people away from their party?” Dar tweeted.

The incident was condemned not only by Abdullah’s supporters but others, some of whom termed it “deplorable”.

Annoyed over the misbehaviour meted out to Omar Abdullah in Drass. People of the Valley and Ladakh are emotionally connected with each other. All the regions of the erstwhile state are geographically allied,” Apni Party president Syed Altaf Bukhari said in a statement.

Sajjad Kargil, a political activist from Kargil, accused the UT administration of using “power” to suppress dissenting voices. Sajjad said that Abdullah’s visit was turned into a significant one by the Ladakh administration, who have often attempted to put restrictions on such movements.

It was a normal visit, but it was made significant by the administration. The people were also enthusiastic to see a former chief minister reaching out to them as the UT administration has failed to deliver, whether be it land or jobs,” Kargil told NewsClick.

Kargil added that the residents in Ladakh have no access to the administration and, therefore, are insecure about their future. The Ladakh administration, he said, is of the “Of The Bureaucrats, By the Bureaucrats and For the Bureaucrats”.

Two prominent bodies in Ladakh called the People’s Movement for 6th Schedule for Ladakh, and Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) are fighting for various demands for the constitutional safeguard of land and jobs for the people of the region, which they believe are at risk since the special status was revoked by ruling party BJP.

Get the latest reports & analysis with people's perspective on Protests, movements & deep analytical videos, discussions of the current affairs in your Telegram app. Subscribe to NewsClick's Telegram channel & get Real-Time updates on stories, as they get published on our website.

Subscribe Newsclick On Telegram