5 Years On, no end to social boycott of minority community in Zanskar

The social boycott of minority community for past nearly five years in Zanskar division of Kargil has severely affected their economy.
It has been over five years since majority community enforced social boycott against the minority community. The problems of the minority community have been compounded due to failure of the state government to mitigate their sufferings. Due to social boycott, minority community has started to migrate from Kargil to Kashmir valley.
“Members of majority community don’t buy anything from our shops. They don’t interact with us and further they evicted us from the shops which we had taken from them on rental basis. We have been living from hand to mouth as we don’t find any source of earning,” said a group of members of minority community from historical Padum town.
“Our lives and properties are at risk and we are feeling scared the way majority community has been given free hand in the region by the district administration,” they added.
Junior Engineer Abdul Aziz from the same town said he was suspended from the Public Works department after he led a protest against the alleged “atrocities” committed by majority community and the “callousness” of the district administration.
“I was implicated in a false case. A case vide FIR number 13/2012 under section 153 A, 124 A still stands registered against me at police station Zanskar,” he said adding that “I can’t act as mute spectator and am doing everything to expose the duplicity and biased attitude of Kargil and Zanskar administration towards minority community of Zanskar.
He said drivers from minority community are not allowed to enter into any Buddhist village with any foreign tourist in their vehicles.
“Administration has failed to mitigate our sufferings. From five years, not a single elected representative raised this grave issue on the floor of House,” said a member of minority community. He lamented that “we have left with only option and that is migration. to Kashmir Valley,” he said.
Senior Superintendent of Police Kargil T. Gylapo said that the district and police administration had taken up the matter with the spiritual leader Dalai Lama during his visit to Leh. “But the social boycott persists. We have been trying to persuade Buddhist leaders to end this socio-economic boycott,” he said.
Legislator Zanskar Syed Muhammad Baqir Rizvi said he left no stone unturned in persuading Buddhist leaders to end this boycott. “But I failed as neither the government nor district administration showed any interest.
Deputy Commissioner Kargil, Haji Gulzar Hussain said that “situation has started improving now and this social boycott game will be over soon.”