Asserting that there is fear among the people over the constitutional safeguards for Ladakh, the National Commission for Minorities member Rinchen Lhamo vowed to take up the issue with Union Home Minister Amit Shah to ensure its redressal.
She also assured to make sure that all schemes meant for minorities are implemented in letter and spirit in Ladakh.
”Several rumours were spread after the formation of Union Territory in Ladakh (about the constitutional safeguards). People have fear about the safeguards,” Rinchen Lhamo told at a press conference here on Monday.
Lhamo, who is on a maiden visit to the Union Territory after being appointed member of NCM from Ladakh, said that the religious heads have also requested that they will not take up small issues but will only be raising the issue of constitutional safeguards under the Sixth Schedule (for the UT) ”I want to assure the people that at the level of commission, we will hold a meeting (over the issue). This will be my first task for the constitutional safeguards of Ladakh. We will write a letter to the ministry”, She said.
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NCM members have said that they will take up the issue with whosoever is needed to ensure these safeguards, she said.
”We will meet the union home minister. We will meet whosoever is needed for ensuring the constitutional safeguards. we will try our best for the safeguards of Ladakh”, the NCM member said.
On the implementation of schemes meant for minorities in Ladakh, She said that she will take feedback from all so that all schemes meant for minorities are implemented in letter and spirit.
The demands including full statehood was added in 2021 to an already sustained campaign for constitutional safeguards under the Sixth Schedule for Ladakh as people of both Leh and Kargil threatened to intensify their agitation after the ‘harsh winter’ — an indication of a likely showdown between the government and the residents in the new year.
The demand for constitutional safeguards under the Sixth Schedule, which was put forth by the people through a Leh-based political platform soon after getting the union territory status, echoed in Parliament when BJP MP from Ladakh Jamyang Tsering Namgyal raised the issue during Zero Hour on December 15.
The demand was raised amid two near-total strikes that brought life to a standstill across Ladakh in August and later in December on the joint call of the Apex Body of People’s Movement for 6th Schedule and the Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) — an amalgam of almost all political, religious, social, cultural and youth organizations of Leh and Kargil, respectively.
Lhamo further said that all the welfare schemes from the union government will be implemented thoroughly in the UT of Ladakh.
She stressed the need of empowering women and creating awareness among the youths regarding various Skill Development schemes to generate self-employment opportunities in the Union Territory.
Lhamo also took stock of various National Pension schemes under the Department of Social Welfare, Leh.
The Executive Council of LAHDC Leh led by Deputy Chairman, Tsering Angchuk felicitated Rinchen Lhamo. She was appointed as a member of the NCM, GoI recently.