Secretary, Kacho Mehboob Ali Khan chaired a meeting on January 13 for regulating off-roading activities by tourists/locals in wildlife areas and other eco-sensitive locations across Ladakh.
It was highlighted that locations such as Hanle, Pangong, Hunder, Tsokar, etc. experience most of the off-roading incidents. An urgent need to discourage such activities has been felt considering the harm such activities are causing to the wildlife habitat and Ladakh’s sensitive ecology.
In the meeting, it has been decided that sensitization workshops shall be conducted for the tour and travel operators/commercial vehicle unions to carry out responsible tourism activities, other than putting up “warning/information sign boards” and installing “hidden cameras” at strategic/potential locations.
Secretary Kacho stated that a significant role would be played by respective/nearby village Panchayat in regulating such activities for which necessary instructions/ orders with the approval of the competent authority shall be issued. In this regard, the Rural Development Department has been directed to prepare a list of Panchayat Halqas in consultation with Wildlife and Tourism Department.
Further, it has been felt that frequent patrolling by the Ladakh Police, the Wildlife Department, and Tourism department at pre-identified locations is required.
Secretary Kacho pointed out that a ‘Coordination Committee’ of the concerned departments viz. Wildlife, Ladakh Police, Rural Development, Tourism, and PWD will be formed with the approval of the Administration of UT Ladakh.
Chief Wildlife Warden, Ladakh; Director (Tourism), Ladakh; Additional SP, Leh; WLW, Leh; DPO, Leh and other officials were present in the meeting.