Land was being used by the Army for firing, operational and logistic needs.
Srinagar: There was a long pending demand from people of Kargil, especially from the Kargil Hill Development Council before the Union Ministry of Defence, to get back the land from the army which they were using for firing, operational and logistic needs.
Media reports said that Indian Army would vacate Kargil lower plateau, also called Khurbathang Plateau of Kargil, which it has been using for firing, operational and logistic needs; the land would be used to expand Kargil town.
“The biggest impediment for expansion of Kargil town was this land with the army and it will be a big relief for the local people here,” Asgar Ali Karbalia, one of the former lawmakers and leaders of Kargil told this newspaper.
Reports said that on Friday, LAHDC Kargil entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the army for the vacating of this plateau. Reports said that the army has promised to vacate the land in six months.
The move came after the recent Kargil delegation met Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and apprised him about the problems being faced by the local administration to get the land back.
According to the official press release, “MoU was signed between the deputy commissioner and CEO, LAHDC, Kargil, Baseer ul Haq Choudhary, on behalf of the LAHDC, Kargil, and the Brigade Commander, 121 Infantry Division, Brigadier Vivek Bakshi on behalf of the Army. The MoU was signed in the presence of the chairman and chief executive councilor, LAHDC, Kargil, Feroz Ahmad Khan and the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 8 Mountain Division, Major General Praveen Kumar Airy, AVSM.”
Talking to media, CEO, LAHDC Kargil Feroz Ahmad Khan said that the army would be given alternative land near Maratha Unit Kurbathang and Mulbekh area.
Khan said that basically the army was insisting for compensation for the structures it had risen on this land and now with the help of the Central government, the army has dropped the demand for compensation.
Meanwhile, a high-level delegation of Leh, including many newly elected members from the villages near LAC, met Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and apprised him about the problems being faced by the nomads of Leh and adjacent areas due to the standoff with the Chinese army.
A few days back, this delegation, in which former MP Thupstan Chhewang, border representative Lobzang Choezin and Konchok Stazin, were part, went to Delhi with a long list of demands.
They also demanded free movement of nomads on the border and said that the army was not allowing them to go with their herds.
They have also submitted a memorandum to Defence Minister Rajnath Singh asking for internet connectivity in the border villages of Ladakh and said that lack of internet connectivity was adding to their feeling of being neglected by the government.
They also raised the issue of villagers near the LAC who have pending payments with the army as they were engaged on a daily wage system for different works.