Ancient King's Deathbed now Airstrip, Daulat Beg Oldi

by - October 05, 2020


Indian Hercules

                  In front is the Karakoram mountain range. Not far away is the Line of Actual Control between India and China. In the middle of it, there is a piece of land lying at an altitude of 16,000 feet above sea level. The name of this place is 'Daulat Beg Oldi AirStrip'. The base in Ladakh, located along the ancient trade route, was reactivated in 2008 after 43 years. The airstrip is in the headlines again in the recent Indo-China border tensions. The smell of war is also associated with naming. In 1533, Sultan Syed Khan of Chaghtai dynasty was returning to his homeland in Samarkand by this route. It was time for him to return home after the expedition to Ladakh and other parts of Kashmir. But he could not stand the severe cold at such a height. This mighty ruler of Central Asia considered defeat to his death.

Dr. Henry Walter Bellew

            Daulat Beg Oldi has been the name of this hilly place since his death. In the ancient Chaghtai language, which means the place of death of a mighty hero. This history was discovered by Henry Walter Bellew. At the end of the nineteenth century, he was an assistant surgeon in the Bengal Medical Service of the British Army. Doctor Bellew toured different parts of Central Asia. Find out the lost history. The history of the campaign of Sultan Syed Khan came into his hands. The book titled 'Tarikh-i-Rasidi' was written by Mirza Dughlat, a relative of Syed Khan and also general. Who was later also in the Mughal court? Henry Bell published the history of naming Daulat Beg Oldi after looking at his details and also others. That means this area has been smelling of war for hundreds of years. To the south of which flows the Chip Chap River from east to west.
            The US military transport aircraft C-130J Super Hercules recently landed on this airstrip. As a result, the airstrip, built during the China-Indian war in 1962, has come under renewed scrutiny. Daulat Beg Oldi is one of the highest military airports in the world. Due to its height, it is possible to monitor the vast territory of Gilgit and Aksai Chin from here.
Road to Ladakh
                This airstrip is often the cause of China's headaches. They fear that once the war breaks out, India could easily launch an attack on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) through this airstrip. Daulat Beg Oldi is very important in terms of position. Nearby is the Karakoram mountain. The pass is one of the means of communication between Central Asia and Ladakh from the distant past. The Siachen Glacier is also not far from this airport. The airstrip is an important source of supplies for the soldiers guarding there. In addition to the airstrip, there are multiple Indian Army helipads. All in all, the importance of Daulat Beg Oldi in the security of the country is immense.

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