Solidarity for Ladakh’s Statehood and Environmental Protection: Leaders Unite in Leh

Leh, 24 March 2024 | Tarun Uppal, Chairperson of Nirbhay Bharat Foundation, alongside Smt. Kalpana Inamdar, Working President of Rashtriya Lokandolan Nyas led by Renowned Activist K.B. alias Anna Hazare, and Farmer Leader Pt. Shekhar Dixit visited Environment Activist Sonam Wangchuk at the protest site in Leh to express solidarity for Ladakh’s statehood restoration, considering it a fundamental constitutional right.

Notably, Sonam Wangchuk is on his 19th day of a hunger strike. The delegation inquired about Wangchuk’s well-being and announced their support for his environmental conservation campaign.

Tarun Uppal articulated their demands, focusing on safeguarding Ladakhi farmers and nomads facing challenges such as losing access to vital pasturelands due to industrial expansion in the south and Chinese encroachment in the north. Their commitment underscores the urgency for improved governance by the central government.

Uppal, originating from Jammu, emphasized that treating Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh as a single centrally managed entity deprives people of their democratic rights, constituting an affront to the Constitution. If necessary, the movement will be extended nationwide to raise public awareness.

Kalpana stressed that regardless of the ruling government, actions should prioritize the nation’s best interests. India’s diversity necessitates the government’s moral duty to safeguard everyone’s interests, especially concerning national borders. Given the heightened sensitivity, she urged the Central Government to consider Wangchuk’s demands; otherwise, a nationwide movement appears inevitable.

Farmer leader Shekhar Dixit, from Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, highlighted the importance of business balanced with social justice. He emphasized ongoing issues in Manipur, Punjab, and West Bengal, urging solutions to address difficulties faced by farmers, laborers, and tribal communities. Dixit cautioned against governing solely based on religion, foreseeing negative long-term consequences.

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