Tableau Row: Kargil Celebrates R-Day Separately

Kargil: Amid bone-chilling cold, the Anjuman Jamiat-e- Ulema Isna Ashria Kargil on Tuesday celebrated the 72 R-Day separately as a mark of protest against the administration.

Prominent leaders and organizations in the Kargil district had expressed their dismay and termed the first Tableau display in New Delhi a partial representation of the region by ignoring the socio-cultural heritage of Kargil.

President, Anjuman Sheikh Nazir Muhamadi said that Kargil today marked history with the maiden unofficial R-Day celebrations with the participation of thousands of people.

“It was a clear message to the administration and central government that partial share cum representation isn’t acceptable to people of Kargil,” Muhamadi said.

He said that despite having no such experience the occasion was celebrated in a great manner with people’s participation.

“People in thousands joined the celebrations at Isna Ashri Chowk Kargil and the tricolour was unfurled at 10:45 am that started with the recitation of Quran,” he said.

Earlier talking to Kashmir Observer Sheikh Nazir Muhamadi said, that the people of Kargil are appalled to see the discrimination from the administration in the name of religion and have decided to ignore the Republic Day celebrations by the new Union Territory administration.

“We are being ignored in every aspect and every time since August 5, 2019. This time the tableau to be displayed on Republic Day is representing just one particular community and culture. He alleged that the Muslims of Kargil were being deliberately ignored. “So we decided to celebrate the republic day at our own level as a mark of protest,” he said.

This is for the first time Kargil will be celebrating the republic day separately, Muhamadi said.

On January 23, the chairman of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Kargil, wrote a letter to the Lt. Governor of Ladakh, complaining that Kargil’s religious and cultural ethos have been ignored in the Union Territory’s Republic Day parade tableau.

Stating that since this is the first time ever that Ladakh will have a tableau of its own on Republic Day, LAHDC (Kargil) chairman Feroz Ahmed Khan said that every region should be represented on the tableau.

“It is unfortunate to note that only a single aspect of Ladakhi culture has been incorporated for display on Ladakh’s Republic Day 2021 tableau, thereby failing to showcase the rich and diverse religious-cultural fabric of Ladakh. It is felt that partial representation of the UT at an event as prominent as the Republic Day celebration alienates the people of Kargil district,” Khan’s letter stated.

Ladakh’s tableau which was part of the Republic day parade in Delhi depicted the iconic Thiksey Buddhist Monastery located on top of a hill in Thinness in Leh district.

The architecture of the monastery resembles the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet, the former official seat of the Dalai Lamas.

The tableau also showcases the Ladakh union territory’s vision of becoming ‘carbon neutral’ based on geothermal potential, solar energy, among others.

“Administration is behaving undemocratically and partially and it’s unfortunate that it is going to showcase the culture of one particular community,” Sajad Hussain Kargili, prominent social and political activist from Kargil, told Kashmir Observer.

Pertinently, the newly-created union territory of Ladakh includes Budhisht-dominated Leh district and Muslim-majority Kargil district.

The two communities have been at loggerheads for long but the 2019 decision to scrap Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and carve out a separate Union Territory of Ladakh has deepened the divide. Muslims opposed the move while most of the Buddhists celebrated it.

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