The land of Ladakh, apart from being one of the remotest corners of India, is also quite different from the other regions of India. Just like the geographical features of the area, the people of Leh Ladakh are also quite dissimilar from the rest of the country. Not only their culture, but also their physical appearance comes as very distinct. Despite being an integral part of India, they look more like the people of Tibet and Central Asia.
Originally, Ladakh people consisted of the Dards, an Indo-Aryan race
from the Indus and the Gilgit area. However, because of the large-scale
immigration of the Tibet people to the Leh Ladakh area, the Dards got
overshadowed. Slowly and gradually, Ladakhi people started acquiring the
racial characteristics of the Tibetans only. Thus, in eastern and
central Ladakh, you will find people with mostly a Tibetan origin.
As you move left, in and around Kargil, the Tibetan influence will lead
to a mixed origin. One community in Ladakh stands out from the majority
of the people, that of Arghons. It is a Muslim community of Leh that
took birth from the marriages between local women and Kashmiri or
Central Asian merchants. The people of this community look more like the
Indo-Aryans, but, their cultural traits are similar to that of the other