Srinagar: Ladakh is frequently known as a ‘chilly wilderness’ however mendacity beneath its naked mountains and soil is an undiscovered treasure of treasured rocks and minerals. And a slice of this treasure can also be discovered preserved within the ‘Ladakh Rocks and Minerals Museum’ positioned close to Leh’s Shey Palace and the ancient Amir Kabir mosque at the previous Lhasa highway.


From fossils of the prehistoric technology and meteorites to treasured and uncommon stones and gemstones, the museum’s assortment has began to draw vacationers from everywhere the sector.

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‘Rocks, minerals, fossils’: New Ladakh museum brings trans-Himalayan treasures below one roof 6

Additionally, the vacationers get amazed additional once they uncover that all of the artifacts were gathered via the founding father of the museum – Phunchok Angchok Togo.

“I used to be taken with amassing rocks from a tender age. First of all, I might search for rocks for non secular functions and used to wander within the mountains. Steadily, my pastime grew and so did my assortment. I might seek the advice of geologists, and gemmologists to begin with and now they seek the advice of me as I’ve extra wisdom about rocks and minerals. I’ve been amassing rocks and fossils for over 30 years and feature spent days and weeks at a stretch in mountains to assemble the similar,” Phunchok informed The Kashmir Observe.


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He stated he shifted his assortment to a museum when he confronted house constraints at house.


“My spouse would scold me when my assortment greater as there was once no house at house. I then shifted to a museum and likewise were given it registered. Now I’ve masses of rocks and different collections. I even have over 100 fossils. Some are tens of millions of years previous. Even geologists are amazed once they see my number of fossils. I’ve additionally gathered meteorites,” he stated.

Phunchok stated despite the fact that the Ladakh area was once thought to be a land of ‘naked mountains’, it glittered beneath.

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‘Rocks, minerals, fossils’: New Ladakh museum brings trans-Himalayan treasures below one roof 8

“Other people say Ladakh is land of naked mountains however I’ve gathered fulgurites, rubies, emeralds, and so forth that glitter. When a thunderbolt hits a land, crystals are shaped and those are known as fulgurites. I’ve gathered fulgurites too,” he stated.

Now, Phunchok is hoping for some govt help in order that he can show his assortment in a greater means.

“No matter I’ve performed thus far is out of my pocket. If the federal government supplies me help, I want to have a larger museum the place I will be able to have more room to show my assortment. My intention and purpose are to keep the treasures of the Himalayas (Ladakh) and show them. I additionally wish to do additional learn about and analysis about rocks, minerals, meteorites, and fossils. I additionally wish to train the scholars, researchers, geologists, gemmologist, mineralogists, paleontologists, pedologists, pharmacologists, and vacationers,” he stated.


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Wiqar Bashir, a contemporary customer to the museum, stated Phunchok had introduced treasures from the trans-Himalaya area ‘below one roof.

“Phunchok Wanchok’s assortment is a results of sheer hobby and a long time of go back and forth on this area. Not anything deters him from exploring and amassing. A few years in the past he slipped right into a crevasse close to the Haksho cross within the treacherous Zanskar Himalaya and was once fortunately rescued with out a main damage however needed to bivouac in excessive stipulations. The museum positioned close to the Shey Palace and ancient Amir Kabir mosque at the previous Lhasa highway is an awesome number of rock and mineral treasures from the trans-Himalaya area below one roof, a must-visit for experts and common other people alike,  the small zoomorphic rocks assortment, particularly the robin is a satisfaction to peer,” Wiqar informed The Kashmir Observe.

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