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Anjuman Imamia alleges Hill Council, Leh, of neglecting demands of minority
LBA, LGA too demand land in Leh city
By Stanzin Dasal & Kunzang Chosdol, Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Showing resentment against the delay in earmarking land for Eidgah by Hill Council Leh, Anjuman Imamia took out a protest rally on November 15 at Balkhang Chowk which later culminated at Council Secretariat, Leh.

In this regard, a press conference was held at Imam Bargha, Leh on November 14,  during which Ashraf Ali Barcha, President Anjuman Imamia said, “We have been requesting for an allotment of land for Eidgah from the last 15 years. Many Council came and gone after every election but no one has taken our demand seriously. As a mark of protest, we even performed our Eid prayer at Polo ground, Leh. Our demand has been kept on delaying without any proper justification”. 

“The present council assured to get the approval of the land in the General Council meeting which was not fulfilled, thus breaking the whole community expectations and trust. A team of delegation approached CEC regarding the matter but Dr. Dawa termed it as inappropriate when Sayeeda Bano Ladakhi, Nominated Councillor raised this issue in the General Council Meeting,” alleged Ashraf Ali.

The community questioned that if our councillor has no right to raise the concern issue in General Council Meeting then who will raise it?

Sayeeda Bano, Nominated Councillor said, “I am representing a minority community as a councillor and it is my duty to put forward the demands and issues of my people in the GCM.”

Abbas Abidi, Congress leader said, “The demand for the land allotment is a long pending demand of the community who are facing problem in performing religious duties because of space constraint. It is very sad to see the reluctant nature and attitude of the Chairman towards our demand.” 

Responding to the protestors, Dr. Sonam Dawa, CEC said, “If it is not fulfilled in the past 15 years, how can you expect to get it fulfilled in my tenure only?” 

He further added that we are putting every effort in this and will allot it soon.

Similarly, Ladakh Buddhist Association and All Ladakh Gonpa Association also submitted a letter to Dr. Sonam Dawa, CEC, Hill Council, Leh on November 21, demanding an allotment of land for constructing a monastery. 

The letter of Ladakh Buddhist Association reads, “Buddhists being the majority community, we must get our due share of 90% more than what may be allocated to the other religious communities as being the major community”
It further reads, “With an increase in population and more and more teachings being organised by Eminent Rinpoches and different religious societies, the Chokhang Vihara has become small to accommodate a large number of devotees. So, We aspire to construct a large teaching place within the town as a replica of the Chokhang Vihara”.

While on the other hand, the letter of All Ladakh Gonpa Association reads, Ladakh Gonpa Association being the main body having (16) big monasteries of four major sects of Buddhist have no land around Leh to organize seminars and pujas. Organizing a big event in the limited space of Chokhang Vihara further creates a problem. We are not opposing the allotment of land to other religious communities, but at the time we should also be allotted suitable land around Leh to construct a multipurpose hall for organising seminars and annual pujas.”

However, Ladakh Buddhist Association also stated that they have been demanding for a land from the last four decades mentioning the references of the submitted letters.

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