State Times News JAMMU: Amid ongoing protests by people of Kargil over their demand for rotational divisional headquarters, Governor Satya Pal Malik has said a committee of secretaries has been formed to ensure justice for the district. Hundreds of Kargil residents, including women and children, took out a rally in the winter capital Jammu on Monday and raised slogans in support of their demand for equal share in the recently created separate division for Ladakh and rotational divisional headquarters. “The divisional status for Ladakh was a long-standing demand (of the people of the region). We have formed a committee of secretaries which will look into the issue so that Kargil gets justice,” the Governor told reporters on the sidelines of a function in Katra township of Reasi district. In a major decision on February 8, the Jammu and Kashmir administration sanctioned creation of a separate administrative and revenue division for Ladakh, with its headquarters at Leh. Cutting across party lines, prominent politicians from Kargil affiliated with the National Conference, PDP and Congress came together and threatened mass agitation if the Governor administration did not review its decision to permanently post the divisional commissioner and inspector general of police headquarters in Leh. On Sunday, thousands of people also staged a rally in Kargil and submitted a memorandum to the deputy commissioner to press for their demand.
Malik replied in negative when asked whether his administration plans to give divisional status to any other region of the State.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the National Conference are advocating similar status to Pir Panjal and Chenab Valley region.
“It (divisional status) was imperative for both the districts of Leh and Kargil let those talking about it come to power and do so,” the Governor said.
The Kargil residents including their leaders affiliated with different political parties assembled at Karbala complex in the high-security Wazarat Road here on Monday morning and took out a rally which ended peacefully at the Press Club, Jammu, after passing through the Residency Road.
Prominent among those who took part in the rally included Legislative Council Chairman Haji Anayat Ali, Chief Executive Councilor of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council, Kargil, Feroz Khan, former ministers Qamar Ali Akhoon, Asgar Karbalai, Nissar Ali, former MP Hassan Khan.
The leaders also addressed the gathering at the Press Club, vowing to continue the “united struggle” till the “genuine demands” of the people of Kargil are not met.
Meanwhile, the town of Kargil and adjoining areas observed a shutdown on Monday to protest against the decision of the government to set up the permanent headquarters of the newly-created Ladakh division in Leh. “Shops and business establishments are closed, while roads are deserted due to the shutdown called by local leaders in Kargil,” officials said. The government decision to create Ladakh division has led to resentment from other regions of the state like Pir Panjal and the Chenab valley, where leaders have threatened to launch an agitation if similar administrative units for their regions were not created.
The National Conference has already made it an election issue, with its leader Omar Abdullah promising to create new divisions for Pir Panjal and Chenab valley if his party is voted to power in the assembly elections likely to be held later this year.
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