Ladakh Rancho's protest claims first casualty; BJP denies ticket to Article 370 abrogation poster-boy Tsering Namgyal

The BJP announced on April 23 that Tashi Gyalson

By Anoushka Caroline Williams  Published on  27 April 2024 4:07 AM GMT
Ladakh Ranchos protest claims first casualty; BJP denies ticket to Article 370 abrogation poster-boy Tsering Namgyal

Hyderabad: Climate activist Sonam Wangchuk’s protest claimed its first political casualty after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) replaced its sitting MP Tsering Namgyal and fielded Tashi Gyalson, sitting chairman of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council.

The decision comes amidst mounting pressure from local activists and citizens dissatisfied with the government's response to environmental concerns and promises made in its manifesto.

The BJP announced on April 23 that Tashi Gyalson, the current chairman of the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council, would replace sitting MP Jamyang Tsering Namgyal as the party's candidate for the ongoing Lok Sabha elections in Ladakh. Namgyal had won the seat after the party's pledge to implement the Sixth Schedule in Ladakh, a promise yet to be fulfilled.

The climate protest, led by prominent activist Sonam Wangchuk, has gained widespread support among Ladakhis and resonated across India.

Wangchuk, known for his role inspiring the character played by Aamir Khan in "3 Idiots," initiated the protest on March 4 with a 21-day hunger strike, highlighting the urgency of addressing environmental issues in the region.

Through daily updates on social media, Wangchuk has galvanized public opinion and drawn attention to government inaction.

Recent developments have added to the tension surrounding the protest. Wangchuk's thoughts on the matter are highlighted through the following pointers:

- Wangchuk disclosed receiving an anonymous letter alleging government scrutiny of his institute's bank details by the "anti-money laundering department."

- He raised concerns about government interference and intimidation tactics aimed at stifling dissent.

- Despite facing intimidation, Wangchuk said that he remains steadfast in his commitment to the climate protest, viewing adversity as an opportunity to expose governance issues and mobilize public support for environmental conservation and indigenous rights.

“The BJP's decision to replace Namgyal with Gyalson reflects internal discord within the party and dissatisfaction among local leaders. With Ladakh's monasteries pledging allegiance to the climate protest, the BJP's electoral prospects remain uncertain” said Wangchuk.

“As Ladakh navigates the complexities of regional politics amidst a burgeoning climate protest, the voices of local activists such as me and citizens serve as a potent reminder of the power of perseverance in the pursuit of social and environmental justice” Wangchuk concluded.

Next Story