Why are Buddhists up in arms against Muslims in Ladakh
A feud between the Muslims and Buddhists at Ladakh has broken out and the latter have decided to petition the Prime Minister about the same. While there have always been undercurrents on this issue, the problem intensified after a Buddhist woman married a Shia Muslim after converting her religion.
The Buddhists are at a thin majority of 51 per cent in Ladakh when compared to the 49 per cent Muslims. The Buddhists say that they have been repeatedly complaining to the government about the conversions that are taking place, but the same has fallen on deaf ears.
The Buddhists complain that since 2003, at least 45 girls have married Muslims. They suspect that this part of a cleansing process and the Jammu and Kashmir government is not hearing their grievances. The Muslims however argue that the conversions are not one sided. Many Muslims too have converted to Buddhism they allege.
The situation is volatile and the state cannot afford a repeat of 1989 when violent clashes broke out between the Muslims and Buddhists. These clashes led to the Ladakh Buddhists Association for a social boycott of the Muslims. This was however lifted in 1992.
The Association says that their pleas before the state government have fallen on deaf ears. They now intend petitioning Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a bid to find a solution. They say that the government cannot continue to ignore these conversions that are taking place.