Ladakh, one of the 8 Union Territories in India, is full of amusing things, apart from its scenic beauty. One such architectural marvel is the Ice Stupas.
Climate change in rural Himalayas is a cause of concern, with much lesser glacier melt in spring, leading to water shortages. Enter the Stupas.
Stupas were first built by a Ladakhi engineer, 83-year-old Chewang Norphel. But his Stupas were at over 4,000 m; tough for villagers to reach.
Sonam Wangchuk (yes, the 3 idiots guy) solved it. He improved Chewang Norphel's artificial glaciers and brought them next to agricultural lands.
Wangchuk sat on a hunger strike for 4 days at his school. He started it on Jan 26, pleading to PM Modi, "All is not well in Ladakh."
Ice stupas are created during the biting winter months in Ladakh, to combat the region's water crisis. It is a tower of ice that can store wastewater.PHOTO: twitter/indiatoday
Water is channelled from glacial streams to higher terrain. The height difference leads to pressure build-up, the falling water freezes, forming a stupa.
The Stupa begins to melt in early summer, delivering water to agricultural areas. Normally, there would be no water during the early summer months.
Farmers are dependent on the melting snow water from the Stupas to grow wheat, barley, vegetables, etc.
The concept of Ice Stupas is now getting famous across the globe, including places like Pakistan. Experts believe it is the best way to save water in the mountains.