President Kovind, on the first day of his visit to the Union territory of Ladakh, will perform the Sindhu Darshan puja at the Sindhu Ghat in Leh, according to an official communiqué.
Written by Joydeep Bose | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
President of India Ram Nath Kovind will celebrate Dussehra this year with the soldiers of the Indian Army in Ladakh’s Drass area, one of the coldest places in the world where temperatures can drop to less than -40°C. With this, the President will be breaking away from the tradition where he is usually seen participating in Dussehra celebrations in the national capital, Delhi, every year.
An official communiqué issued by the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Wednesday said that President Kovind will be visiting Ladakh, and Jammu and Kashmir on October 14 and 15 (a two-day trip over Thursday and Friday).
On the first day of his visit to the Union territory of Ladakh, President Kovind will perform the Sindhu Darshan puja at the Sindhu Ghat in Leh, according to the communiqué. The riverbank, known for its beautiful and scenic landscape, is situated near the Shey village in Leh and hosts a multitude of cultural programmes with the barren mountains, typical to the region, in the backdrop.
In the evening, the President will travel to the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir and interact with Indian troops stationed at Udhampur, the Northern Command headquarters of the Indian Army. Notably, this city – which also serves as the district capital – is considered an important and strategic transit point by the armed forces when travelling by road on the National Highway 44.
Finally, President Kovind will travel to Drass in Ladakh on October 15 (Friday) and pay tributes to the martyrs of the 1999 Kargil War at the famous Kargil War Memorial in the hill station. Drass is known as “the Gateway to Ladakh” and is famous for its high-altitude trekking routes and tourist sites. It is also a strategically significant military point, one where the Indian Army personnel have to brave the soaring altitudes and freezing temperatures all year long to guard the Line of Control (LoC).