Kargil, Nov 7: The Ladakh administration has put the draft of its “Industrial Land Allotment Policy”’ in public domain for seeking suggestions and comments from general public of the UT by November 10.
The Ladakh Industrial Land Allotment Policy – 2023 is the first of its kind after the formation of Ladakh as a separate Union Territory. Previously, before the formation of the Union Territory, the region followed the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir’s industrial policy. The recent draft of the Ladakh Industrial Land Allotment Policy-2023 which has been put in the public domain by the Ladakh UT administration has drawn certain reactions from various stakeholders here . The main concern raised is the non- involvement of two elected Hill Development Councils including Leh and Kargil.
Reacting to the recent Ladakh Industrial Land Allotment Policy 2023- the Leh Apex Body, an amalgam of political, social, religious and trade organisations spearheading the demand for constitutional safeguards under the 6th schedule and protection of land and environment, said that they will submit its objections or recommendations to UT Ladakh administration in this regard soon. The Leh Apex Body held an important meeting under the chairmanship of Thupstan Chhewang in presence of Chhering Dorje Lakrook and members of Apex body, in which the policy was discussed.
“Deliberation on Ladakh lndustrial Land Allotment Policy 2023 drafted and issued by Department of Industries and Commerce UT Ladakh, to review and analysis of the same by Apex Body experts/Legal cell and to submit their report by November 8 to the Apex Body. Suggestions for amendment in the Ladakh Industrial Land Allotment Policy 2023 as per the aspiration of people of Ladakh if needed to be submitted to the UT administration by November 9, ” reads a statement issued by Apex Body Leh.
Prominent social-political activist Sajjad Kargili, who is also a member of the Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA), an umbrella body of various political social, religious and trade organisations said that the new policy posed a “significant risk” to the delicate environment of the region and also “threatens” the indigenous cultural identity of the region. “The introduction of this draft without the consent of the people of Ladakh is undemocratic and deeply concerning. Moreover, Undermining the opinions of the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Councils (LAHDCs) indicates a continued disempowerment of the people of Ladakh,” he said in a post on X.
Kargilli also urged that it was imperative for the hill councils in both Leh and Kargil to unite against the policy was “against the interests of the local population.” ” The powers with regard to land as per the LAHDC Acts are with the autonomous councils as of date. The new Industrial land allotment policy which is now in force makes no mention of the councils whatsoever, and rather very conveniently sidelines the councils,” said Haji Mustafa a legal expert from Kargil. “This is despite the comments and suggestions which were made by the KDA and the Apex to the policy draft issued last year. A policy against the people and the fragile environment ( he policy envisages ” rapid Industrialisation in Ladakh “ ) is a big no,” he added.
Pertinently, the Ladakh Industrial Land Allotment Policy 2023 issued by the industries department said that the policy shall remain in operation for 10 years from the date of its adoption and it is aimed at following a transparent mechanism for land allotment for industrial use in Ladakh Union Territory. Even as the policy provides a framework to attract National as well as International investments in Ladakh, land allotment for the industrial units seeking investment in the Service Sector as mentioned in the Positive List of the Ladakh Sustainable Industrial Policy 2022-27 shall be permitted only for local entrepreneurs of the Union Territory.
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