Tourist potential of Alchi monastery in Ladakh enriches the region

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Ladakh, Feb 21 (ANI): The tourist potential of the ten century old Alchi monastery in Ladakh has helped to boost the economy of the area.

Alchi Choskor, located 65 km from Leh, was patronized a thousand years ago by two wealthy Buddhist monks.

It contains traditional Tibetan architecture. The murals in the monastery date back to the period between 11th-13th century A.D and were made by artists brought from the Kashmir Valley where the art no longer exists.

Locals say the monastery has proved to be a major tourist attraction that has greatly contributed to the economy of the region.

"Because of this monastery, many hotels have cropped up in the region. This contributing to the economy of the region.," said Tsewang Rabgais, a resident.

The structures were built by Lotsava Rinchen Zangpo who appointed four families to look after Choskor, as there was no monastic community back then.

Later in the15th century Choskor was taken over by the Lekir Monastery since then Alchi Choskor Gonpa is being taken care of by Lekir Monastery.

"Among the 108 monasteries built by Rinchen Zangpo during the 11 century, only 40 of those monasteries are now left including the Alchi monastery. Rest all the monasteries are now in a dilapidated state," said Sonam Dorjey Lonpo, a Scholar.

History also says that Alchi was part of a small kingdom ruled by members of the Dro-clan of a Central Tibetan origin.

Alchi Choskor is the only monastery in the Ladakh on flat ground and has traces of the Indian and Kashmiri influences. y Tashi Pradhan (ANI)

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