Amidst political turbulence in Ladakh, the BJP’s announcement of Tashi Gyalson as its candidate for the Ladakh parliamentary seat, replacing sitting MP Jamyang Tsering Namgayal, has stirred up controversy and uncertainty.Leaders of the National Conference (NC) are urging the Congress party to field a candidate from Kargil, challenging the BJP’s move. Namgayal, however, remains defiant, continuing to tour different parts of the region and meeting his supporters. Despite expressing loyalty to his party, he has not unequivocally declared support for the BJP’s candidate, leaving his final decision pending.The Leh Apex Body (LAB) is yet to formally announce its stance on the elections, adding to the intrigue surrounding the political landscape in Ladakh. The BJP’s decision to drop Namgayal, who secured victory for the party in 2019, comes amidst discontent among a section of Buddhists in Leh.Local sources speculate that Gyalson, the BJP’s new candidate and a lawyer by profession, may have a better chance of retaining the seat, given his potential appeal to the Muslim-majority Kargil region.The political backdrop in Ladakh has been shaped by the BJP government’s decision to grant Union Territory status to Ladakh in 2019, amid ongoing demands from local bodies like LAB and Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) for Sixth Schedule Status and Statehood. Despite assurances of dialogue from the Centre, tensions persist as major demands remain unmet.In this charged environment, the political maneuvers of parties like the PDP, with minimal stakes in the region, are also being closely watched as the electoral landscape takes shape.


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