Leh: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Thursday complimented the panchayat system of Leh saying this model should be practised in the entire country.
"The model of Panchayati Raj which this region is following is far more effective than the one practiced in Uttar Pradesh. This model is going to set an example for the entire nation," Gandhi, who kick-started his two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir from here, said.
Leh district has nine blocks with over 600 panchayat members. All the developmental work in carried out by sarpanchs and panchs after calling tenders for the work to be executed.
After an initial meeting with members of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council, the 42 year old AICC general secretary held a political rally during which he assured the people of Ladakh that upon the completion of the all-weather Zojila and Z Morh tunnels, they would remain connected with the rest of the state and the country throughout the year.
Gandhi said the Congress believed in "uniting people".
"I know this region needs development and we`ll provide good roads, mobile telephony, education and an overall package of development.
"I had a briefing from the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council and I`m extremely happy for the work they have done for the rehabilitation of people after the tragic landslide," Gandhi, who was dressed in a local Ladakhi dress, said.
Besides connectivity, he also highlighted that the region needed education, promotion of tourism and good employment.
Later addressing a rally in Kargil, he assured the people there that after the Zojila Tunnel work was completed, the region would be linked to rest of the country.
He also said that air connectivity was important for the people of the region because on a number of occasions local people who fell sick could not be given best possible medical care because of lack of air connectivity.
Gandhi said he had a meeting with Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh and will take up the issue further.