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Ladakh reels from unemployment as third “separation anniversary” approaches

Last Updated on July 1, 2022 at 6:36 pm

Two years after the Galwan Valley clash and three years after it became a union territory (UT) following its separation from the former state of Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh is currently experiencing a crisis that is spreading to the streets as a result of various organisations’ discontent with the UT administration.

Local students claim that the J&K Public Service Commission (PSC) has been responsible for government recruitment exams in the past. After separation from J&K, Ladakh administration faced difficulties in conducting these exams. Now, the examinations are expected to be held in August as unemployed people from all around Ladakh came to Leh to express their outrage over current situation.

The All Ladakh Unemployment Youth Association (ALUYA), a youth organisation in Leh that had lain dormant for decades, has been revived by the people.  Tundup Thinlas, president of ALUYA told a news media outlet that considering their current situation, they are establishing unemployment associations. They have been given empty promises from the administration.

Student organisations from all around Ladakh organised demonstrations in Leh in the months of September, October, and December in 2021 to alert the comatose UT administration. Thinlas complained that JKPSC advertised for positions when the bifurcation was announced, but no exams were held following the split. Only because of their objections did the UT administration decide to hold exams for the 55 open panchayat accountant positions.

The administration has been made aware of several examination rule loopholes, the students allege. For instance, they claim that subordinate positions lacked divisions such as UT cadre, divisional cadre, and district cadre. Students claim that the UT administration has not attempted to create any new jobs for the past three years. All of their current efforts are focused on getting the government to finish the tests that were planned before the partition.

In a territory with a population of 30,000, ALUYA asserts that at least 4,500–5,000 individuals have registered with them as unemployed. Three years after the bifurcation, unemployment rates are rising in the chilly desert, and residents of the area are unsure of their future livelihoods, concerned about losing their land, and perplexed about constitutional protections.