Kishtwar Buddhists resort to stone pelting over delay in spiritual leader’s departure

Kishtwar Buddhists resort to stone pelting over delay in spiritual leader’s departure
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SRINAGAR: The unscheduled stay due to a delayed helicopter arrival in Kishtwar of a Buddhist monk and three people accompanying him has led to stone pelting in a protest that is now under inquiry by the district administration.
Khistwar District Development Commissioner Angrez Singh Rana told Kashmir Reader that an inquiry has been ordered into the circumstances which led to a law and order problem during the visit of Buddhist spiritual guru Gwlang Drupka here at Gulabgarh, Padder, on July 25.
As per a government-issued statement, a large number of Buddhists including women gathered in Padder and started raising anti-government slogans. Some angry people are said to have resorted to stone pelting the SDM office building, thus causing loss to government property.
Rana told Kashmir Reader that the incident occurred after the guru and three others could not take a flight from Gulangad as the helicopter they were supposed to travel by could not come due to the cloudy weather. He said that the guru was angered after another helicopter landed in the area around the same time.
“I was told by the helicopter company that the helicopter could not come due to bad weather. And another helicopter of another company made it, possibly because they took a separate route,” Raina said.
Asked why the monk’s helicopter did not opt for the same route, he said, the helicopter was a government-subsidised one that take passengers from Jammu and Gulangad and vice-versa. “The helicopter officers told me that it could have been dangerous,” Rana said.
He said that on July 25, a Senior Superintendent of Police had requested the monk to take the flight at 11:30 am, but he refused. The helicopter had arrived, but the monk decided to go by road.