(TibetanReview.net, Jan27’24) – India is to repopulate a village in its Himalayan state of Uttarakhand lying nearest to Tibet’s border after having evacuated its residents during the late 1962 war with China, reported indiatimes.com Jan 27. The decision follows India’s recently initiated drive to develop its border villages and infrastructure to match China’s massive efforts undertaken over the past decades across the border in occupied Tibet.
China has long been accused of nibbling at or salami-slicing India’s territory by taking advantage of the lack of development and inhabitants in the latter’s thousands of kilometre-long, practically abandoned border areas.
Jadung village in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand had around 56 families living there before it was abandoned in 1962, with the evacuated residents rehabilitated in Harshil Valley, located about 50 km further away from Tibet’s border.
The scenic village, located at an altitude of 3,800 metres above sea level has since remained a ghost hamlet, except for the Indian Army and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) camps there.
Jadung is now all set to welcome its original residents back, as well as tourists, after the state government cleared a proposal to redevelop it under the country’s Vibrant Village Programme, the report said.
Following an Apr 2023 announcement by the Uttarakhand Tourism Development Board, Jadung, also known as “Leh and Ladakh” of Uttarakhand, will also be developed as a tourist destination. Currently, there are just six dilapidated houses left in Jadung and these will be redeveloped as homestays, the report added.
They will be developed by the state’s Tourism Department and operated by the original inhabitants who still own the land in the village, the report said.