Ladakh lies at an altitude of about 3,500 metres and the surrounding mountains rise to over 6,000 metres. The area is remote: the main road linking
with the rest of India is cut off by snow for six months or more each year. This is a high-altitude desert environment where water is precious. Agriculture and human settlements depend on water from snow melt, which flows towards the Indus River. Traditionally, most of it is were subsistence farmers growing mainly barley and vegetables, or they were nomads tending goats and yaks.
The opening of a road in the 1960s linking
with the plains brought large numbers of army personnel and the spread of the Indian civil administration. The private sector is small, comprising mainly seasonal, tourism-related activities. There are few substantial companies and few enterprise role models among the Buddhist community.
The main aim in life for many young
is is to obtain government employment, even though few such jobs are available.It is a region in Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir that currently extends from the Kunlun mountain range to the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo – Aryan and Tibetan descent. It is one of the most sparsely populated regions in Jammu and Kashmir and its culture and history are closely related to that of Tibet. It is renowned for its remote mountain beauty and culture.
In the past it is gained importance from its strategic location at the crossroads of important trade routes, but since the Chinese authorities closed the borders with Tibet and Central Asia in the 1960s, international trade has dwindled except for tourism. Since 1974, the Government of India has successfully encouraged tourism in
. Since it is a part of strategically important Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian military maintains a strong presence in the region.
The largest town in it is Leh, followed by Kargil. Almost half of it is are Shia Muslims and the rest are mostly Tibetan Buddhists.Some
activists have in recent times called for
to be constituted as a union territory because of perceived unfair treatment by < Kashmir and Ladakh's cultural differences with predominantly Muslim Kashmir.