LADAKH: Ladakh celebrated its journey as a Union Territory with the ‘King’, the ‘Queen’ and their royal entourage watching traditional Ladakhi dance at the courtyard of Leh palace on the second day of festivities.
Witnessing this re-enactment of the historical past were various dignitaries, including local MP Jamyang Tsering Namgyal, former Lok Sabha MP Thupstan Chhewang among others. A procession was carried out from the palace to the main market, tracing the path that was once taken by the king through the narrow lanes of Old Leh.
At the market, the festivity continued as the dignitaries along with the representational King and Queen, donning the royal ensemble, climbed their horses that took them to their next stop, Skatsags. Amid loud cheers, they unveiled the statue of Sengge Namgyal, the 17th century Namgyal dynasty King of Ladakh. Known as the Lion King, Sengge Namgyal is remembered by the locals for commissioning many monasteries, palaces and shrines .
“Today, we the people of Ladakh have finally been recognised. Our identity has been recognised, something that was refused to us for so long. I would like to congratulate each and everyone on Ladakh becoming a Union Territory,” said Gyal P Wangyal, Chief Executive Councillor, Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council Leh.
Ladakh L-G RK Mathur reminded the people of the new challenges. “No opportunity comes without challenge. What we need to do is to embrace the opportunities and overcome the challenges to develop this place,” he asserted.Meanwhile, the JAC Kargil deferred a shutdown for three days to allow Board exams and job screening test.