According to sources, there has been cross-voting as three independent MLAs and six Congress MLAs are said to have voted for BJP candidate Harsh Mahajan.
The local Panchayat body in Kinnaur district under the chairmanship of Hangrang Ringchen Cultural Buddhist Heritage Society passed a resolution to ban all rituals in marriages which do not follow their culture and tradition.
On the occasion, the Assistant-Pradhan of the Sumra village Panchayat Tsering said, “This resolution was passed by the Panchayat to save the outside cultures which had started invading our marriage ceremony in the religion and it pollutes the local culture and tradition”. “The matter of outside traditions intruding on our culture and rituals in marriages was brought up in our Panchayat Gram Sabha house last month. Rituals in marriage, Mehandi ceremony, cake cutting, Sehra tying, shoe hiding etc are not part of our tradition and rituals. The Gram Sabha of our Panchayat has agreed to ban it and we are happy about this,” he added.
Over a dozen village Panchayats are now planning to pass such resolutions to preserve and promote the rich culture of the tribal district of Kinnaur soon. Under the guidance of Lochen Rinpoche the 19th reincarnated lama of the Lochen Rinchen Zangpo. Dozens of villages in Hangrang Valley along the Indo-Tibet border are preparing to pass such resolutions following the Sumra village.
In this regard, the HP Tribal Development Minister Jagat Singh Negi mentioned that there is nothing wrong in taking steps to preserve the local culture.
“With the passage of time, the exposure of the people in tribal areas in our region has increased. People are going out to study and jobs. It is natural that the outside culture is added to local folk. The resolution from last village of Kinnur, the village Panchayat at Sumra has passed a resolution to protect, preserve and promote the local tradition.
“I think there is nothing wrong with it. Our Culture of Kinnaur is very rich, if someone is doing such steps to preserve it willingly there is no harm in it,” he added.
He further stated that the promotion of the preservation of culture is the need of the hour.
“There is a cultural society in Hangrang Valley and Lochen Rinpoche is the head of that society. Annually they organize cultural programmes and all village Panchayats participate in that rotations. It is good that they are trying to save the rich tradition and culture. Our society is very liberal as people follow Buddhism and Hinduism simultaneously. It will help to promote and preserve the traditional values among the youth and it is also the need of the hour.
“I would like to appeal to the people to follow it but at the same time people should learn from other traditions and gain knowledge but also stick to their roots,” he added.
The Zilla Parishad member from Pooh Ward, Shanta Kumar Negi said that with the help of a Buddhist guru, people are coming forward.
“Recently, the meeting of the Hangrang Ringchen Cultural Buddhist Heritage Society was conducted under the chairmanship of 19th Locha Ringchen Zangpo and Vice Chair Somang Rinpoche. In the general meeting of the organization, the matter was raised during the marriages. Especially in the Hangrang Valley, encroachment of external tradition has started. It was decided to let the people take this matter to the gram sabhas of all the panchayats of Hangrang Valley and it was decided to go and conduct an opinion poll. Supporting this effort, the Gram Sabha of Sumra Panchayat passed the resolution and sent it to the society. We are planning more such in near future,” Shanta Kumar Negi said.
Village Panchayat Samiti member Panma Dorjee mentioned that all the villages in the region are in favour of this.
“In a General Body Meeting of Hangrang Ringchen Cultural Buddhist Heritage Society, our member villages of the valley participated and stated that the old tradition is being ignored at weddings. People protested against it and after making a consensus opinion was sought from village to village through Gram Sabhas. Sumra Panchayat has supported, it is expected that other member villages will also cooperate positively in this direction,” Panma said.
The local residents believe that Society has an impact on the people and any decisions taken in the past are followed by the local people.
“In the Hangrang Valley we have faith in the guru Lochen and the society is associated with the Buddhist guru in the region. The general body of that society, the issue that new traditions are being established in marriages and old are wiping out. It was considered and people are now following it with Panchayati Raj Institutions and elected members, even before the English liquor and new initiative of serving meat were stopped by the intervention of the same society,” a local resident said.