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Jammu and Kashmir Information

Jammu and Kashmir is the paradise on the earth.  It has an attitude of 1585 meters to 1820 meters.  It’s length is 130 km and breadth is 40km.  The beauty of this state is incomparable.  It has three district entities.  They are Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.  The living styles of the people are residing in these different regions.  They use the languages and the religions they own, wearing of dresses and the Gods and Goddesses they pray are completely different.  The state capital Srinagar is a place of flowers, Mughal gardens and beautiful lakes.  It is very cold in Srinagar so the government moves down to Jammu.

The Jammu region in the south has the legendary Jammu City, the winter capital of the state.  Hindu Dogras inhabitated it.  The valley lies to the north at a distance of 300km from Jammu city.  This oval plateau is over 5000 feet high and it is surrounded by three Himalayan ranges.  The Karakorum, Zanskar and Pirpanjal.

The third region of the state Ladkah lies in the north east corner.  It is also known as ‘Little Tibet’ because of its Topography.  Culture and religion are akin to those of Tibet.  It also has a large number of monasteries were monks live and prayer flags flutter.  The winter and summer seasons offer different pictures.  The valley is glittering like Gold during summer.  Kashmir is at its best in April and May.  The bedecked meadows are a pleasure to our eyes.  The almond, apple, cherry, apricot and walnut orchards burst into full blossom.  June and July are suitable for trek lovers.  It is adorned with pink and white mustard flowers and poppy and flashed with saffron.  The Chinar also changes color.  But in winter one sees silvery carpet of snow.  The Dal Lake freezes and there are hardly any tourists.  The local merchants also shift to the south.

Kashmir Valley is predominantly Muslim, Jammu region Hindu and Ladakh region of Buddhist.

Location

Jammu and Kashmir lies in the extreme north of India.  It has China in the north, Tibet in the east, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab in the South and Pakistan in the west.

Area

The area of this land is about 222236 Sq.km.

Density

The density of this area is about 99 per sq.km.

Principal Languages

The language spoken by the people are Kashmiri, Dogri, Gujra, Punjabi, Urudu, Dadri, Pahari and Ladakhi.

Capital

Srinagar in summer and Jammu in winter.

Airports

Srinagar, Jammu and Leh.   

Museums

Dogi Art Gallery in Jammu, Sri Pratap sing Government museum in Srinagar.

Tourist Places

Places                                            Height

Gulmarg                                                        2730m

Leh                                                              3514m

Pahalgam                                                      2130m

Srinagar                                                        1586m

History

Kashmir is not of recent origin.  It has been mentioned in Mahabharata.  There is a reference that Bharat and Shatrughana visited Kashmir [ie] in Ramayana.  Emperor Ashoka ruled over Kashmir in the 3rd century BC and spread Buddhism there.  The third Buddhist congress was held in Kashmir at the time of the birth of Christ.  As the Buddhism declined, Hindu kings were back at the saddle in the 7th and 8th century.  Adi Shankaracharya who revived Hinduism also visited Kashmir in the 8th century AD.  For a few year power went on changing from one ruler to another till a Muslim Prince from Tibet came and set up his rule there.  When he died a Sultanate dynasty was established by Shah Mir.  One of the Sultans of this dynasty was Zainul-Abdin.  He was a lover of art and music.  He encouraged the study of Hindu and Buddhist scriptures and arts like carpet weaving, silver and wood carving, embroidery and Shawl making.  He sought the help of crafts men from Persia and Samarkand.

Akbar conquered Kashmir in 1586.  He was very fond of the place and called Kashmir as his private garden.  Four generations of Mughal kings made Kashmir as their summer home to get rid off dust and heat.  They created beautiful gardens, pavilions and irrigation system and clung to the place. 

After the Mughal Kings lost their grip over the administration, Afghan war lords captured power but they were too thrown out by Maharaja Ranjit Singh.  When Sikhs lost war against the British in 1846, the later demanded on indeminity of 500000 pounds.  Since they are not able to pay the amount,  they offered the Kashmir to the British.  The Dogra Maharaja of Jammu offered the British twice the amount asked for and thus became the maharaja of the combined state Jammu and Kashmir.  His descendants ruled over the state till 1947, they had to accede India.  The state became a part of the Indian Union.  But the Pakistan army in the guise of tribal men attacked the state and grabbed 222236 sq.km areas handed over 78114 sq.km of area to China.  But today two third part of the state is with the Indian union and one third with the Pakistan.  Both put forward their claim for the whole of the state.  There were wars in 1965 and 1971 already over Kashmir.  Pakistan has always been sending terrorists from its territory to do bloodshed, destroy property, spread terror and incite the local population in Kashmir to do the same with the result that there is always law and order problem.  Terrorists have tried to enter the Indian parliament and succeeded in entering some temples when they were crowded but they were shot dead.

Economy

Jammu and Kashmir people have agriculture as their chief profession and some 80 percent of them are engaged in it.  The main crops are wheat, maize and paddy.  The state also produces gram, bajra, jawar and barley.  The state has made remarkable process one branch.  It produces fruits and exports them.  The state’s handicrafts are very much in demand and earn a lot of foreign exchange.  There are number of cottage industries and small scale industries producing carpets and shawls and engraved carpentery and handicrafts.

The state has a number of power projects.  Sadal project, Dulhasti project, Uri project, and Baghliar project which will make itself in a sufficient power.        

Shoping in Kashmir

Handicrafts are available here in a wide range.  Chief being carpets, embroidered woolen caps and jackets, articles made of carved silver and walnut wood, silks, embroidered dresses, stone studded jewellery shops are here.

Hiking and Trekking are best ways to see mountains and valleys here.  Some of the popular treks are to the Kolahoi Glacier from Pahalgam, to several lakes from Sonmarg, etc.

Tents and ponies can be hired at Pahalgam for a trek to the 11,800 feet high Kolahoi Glacier.  It is a three day trek from Pahalgam to Ladakh is a difficult ten day journey on way to the Kolahoi one meets with their families.  On the way one finds a beautiful resting spot- Lidderwat one should have trained guides as company as the trek journey is full of hazards.