Dah-Hanou Area

Down the Indus, between Khalatse and the Shayok-Indus confluence, live a people, known as Drok-pa or Brok-pa, who are Buddhists by faith, but racially and culturally distinct from the rest of the Ladakhis. The road leading down the Indus from Khalatse to connect with Kargil across the4 Humbotingla pass passes through the 5 villages of Biama, Dah, Garkon & Darchiks which are inhabited by the Drokpas. This road follows the Indus, past the villages of Domkhar, Skurbuchan and Achinathang, along a fairly good road.


The Drok-pa constitutes a small community of Indo-Aryan people who appear to have preserved their racial purity down the centuries. Their culture and religious practices are more like those of the pre-Buddhist animist religion of the Tibetan Plateau, known as Bon-chos. They have preserved the saga of their ancient traditions and way of life, partly through the celebration of the triennial Bono-na festival, and partly through the songs and hymns, among which the 18 songs of the Bonona festival constitute the core body. Their language is derived from archaic Shina, a language still spoken in Gilgit, and by the Shin immigrants now settled in Drass.

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