Chinese incursion hits Ladakh tourism

Jammu, April 29 (IANS) The Chinese incursion in Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir has dealt a severe blow to tourism in the cold desert region besides challenging India’s sovereignty, a former BJP MP from Ladakh said Monday.

Thupstan Chhewang, BJP national executive committee member, told mediapersons that a grim situation has arisen as China was occupying Indian territory as part of its “strategy to take control of the areas in the Ladakh region”.

“This is a great threat to the security and sovereignty of our country, but it seems that the government of India is sleeping over the matter, as a result of which this situation has arisen,” Chhewang said.

Chinese troops had April 15 entered Indian territory, 19 km from the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the de-facto border between India and China. The LAC is 3,488 km long, 646 km of which is in Ladakh region.

The Chinese troops set up a tented post near Daulat Beg Oldi (DBO) and are still camping there. The Indian army has also set up a post 300 metres from that of the Chinese.

Chhewang said India should shun its soft approach and take up the matter with Chinese authorities. He regretted that besides causing tension on the borders, the incursion and failure of the government of India to “present a clear picture has resulted in massive cancellation of bookings by the domestic and foreign tourists”.

Tourists don’t know that DBO is 250 km from Leh.

Ladakh attracts more than 100,000 high-spending tourists annually.

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