Ladakh to become a 'smart' region: Minister Puri

Minister for Housing and Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri has said that the Modi government has increased the budget for Ladakh four-fold recently amid the India-China face-off in the region

Jun 29, 2020
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New Delhi:  Minister for Housing and Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri has said that the Modi government has increased the budget for Ladakh four-fold recently amid the India-China face-off in the region. He said plans are underway to develop Ladakh, which is a Union territory, into a 'smart' region in view of its strategic importance to the country. 

Puri said that importance has been given to the preservation of the language and culture of the region of about 275,000 people (about 46% Shia Muslims, 40% Tibetan Buddhists and 12% Hindus) while amending the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council Act. Describing the self-reliant India campaign as a movement, Puri said there will be a special focus on Ladakh, and its capital Leh, in this. Puri was addressing a virtual rally to the people of Ladakh on Monday.

"Leh and Ladakh will soon be developed into 'smart' region. Fifty-four mobile towers have been approved for telecom connectivity in the region. Currently, site survey work is in progress. Rs 500 crore has also been allotted to the Organic Development Institute," Puri said.

He said he would himself go to Ladakh - a mountainous region of 60,000 km - soon to take stock of the developmental projects. He said construction of roads in Ladakh has been expedited. 

"So far, only 941 cases have been reported and one death has occurred. This shows that Ladakh is combating corona in the best way possible. Soon Ladakh will be free of corona," Puri said of the territory's fight against the pandemic. 

It is in Ladakh that both Indian and Chinese troops are in combat positions along the Line of Actual Control after the transgression by the Chinese army