Jammu and Kashmir

Jammu and Kashmir

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Jammu and Kashmir is the northernmost state of India
States and territories of India
India is a federal union of states comprising twenty-eight states and seven union territories. The states and territories are further subdivided into districts and so on.-List of states and territories:...

. It is situated mostly in the Himalayan
Himalayas
The Himalaya Range or Himalaya Mountains Sanskrit: Devanagari: हिमालय, literally "abode of snow"), usually called the Himalayas or Himalaya for short, is a mountain range in Asia, separating the Indian subcontinent from the Tibetan Plateau...

 mountains. Jammu and Kashmir shares a border with the states of Himachal Pradesh
Himachal Pradesh
Himachal Pradesh is a state in Northern India. It is spread over , and is bordered by the Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir on the north, Punjab on the west and south-west, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh on the south, Uttarakhand on the south-east and by the Tibet Autonomous Region on the east...

 and Punjab
Punjab (India)
Punjab ) is a state in the northwest of the Republic of India, forming part of the larger Punjab region. The state is bordered by the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh to the east, Haryana to the south and southeast and Rajasthan to the southwest as well as the Pakistani province of Punjab to the...

 to the south and internationally with the People's Republic of China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

 to the north and east and the Pakistan-administered territories of Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

 and Gilgit-Baltistan, to the west and northwest respectively.

Formerly a part of the erstwhile Princely State of Kashmir and Jammu, which governed the larger historic region of Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

, this territory is disputed
Kashmir conflict
The Kashmir conflict is a territorial dispute between India and Pakistan over the Kashmir region, the northwesternmost region of South Asia....

 among China, India and Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

. Pakistan, which claims the entire territory, refers to it as Indian-occupied Kashmir while some international agencies, such as the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

, call it Indian-administered Kashmir.

Jammu and Kashmir consists of three regions: Jammu
Jammu
Jammu , also known as Duggar, is one of the three administrative divisions within Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state in India.Jammu city is the largest city in Jammu and the winter capital of Jammu and Kashmir...

, the Kashmir valley and Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

. Srinagar
Srinagar
Srinagar is the summer seasonal capital of Jammu and Kashmir. It is situated in Kashmir Valley and lies on the banks of the Jhelum River, a tributary of the Indus. It is one of the largest cities in India not to have a Hindu majority. The city is famous for its gardens, lakes and houseboats...

 is the summer capital, and Jammu is the winter capital. While the Kashmir valley is famous for its beautiful mountainous landscape, Jammu's numerous shrine
Shrine
A shrine is a holy or sacred place, which is dedicated to a specific deity, ancestor, hero, martyr, saint, daemon or similar figure of awe and respect, at which they are venerated or worshipped. Shrines often contain idols, relics, or other such objects associated with the figure being venerated....

s attract tens of thousands of Hindu
Hindu
Hindu refers to an identity associated with the philosophical, religious and cultural systems that are indigenous to the Indian subcontinent. As used in the Constitution of India, the word "Hindu" is also attributed to all persons professing any Indian religion...

 pilgrims every year. Ladakh, also known as "Little Tibet
Tibet
Tibet is a plateau region in Asia, north-east of the Himalayas. It is the traditional homeland of the Tibetan people as well as some other ethnic groups such as Monpas, Qiang, and Lhobas, and is now also inhabited by considerable numbers of Han and Hui people...

", is renowned for its remote mountain beauty and Buddhist
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

 culture.

History


Hari Singh
Hari Singh
Maharaja Hari Singh was the last ruling Maharaja of the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir in India.He was married four times...

 had ascended the throne of Kashmir in 1925 and was the reigning monarch at the conclusion of British rule in the subcontinent in 1947. As a part of the partition
Partition of India
The Partition of India was the partition of British India on the basis of religious demographics that led to the creation of the sovereign states of the Dominion of Pakistan and the Union of India on 14 and 15...

 process, both countries had agreed that the rulers of princely states would be given the right to opt for either Pakistan or India or — in special cases — to remain independent. In 1947, Kashmir's population was 77% Muslim and it shared a boundary with Pakistan. On 20 October 1947, tribesmen backed by Pakistan invaded Kashmir.

The Maharaja initially fought back but appealed for assistance to the Governor-General
Governor-General of India
The Governor-General of India was the head of the British administration in India, and later, after Indian independence, the representative of the monarch and de facto head of state. The office was created in 1773, with the title of Governor-General of the Presidency of Fort William...

 Louis Mountbatten, who agreed on the condition that the ruler accede to India. On October 25th 1947, Maharaja Hari Singh signed the Instrument of Accession and it was executed on October 27, 1947 between the ruler of Kashmir and the Governor General of India. Once the papers of accession to India
Instrument of Accession (Jammu and Kashmir)
The Instrument of Accession is a legal document executed by Maharajah Hari Singh, ruler of the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir, on 26 October 1947...

 were signed, Indian soldiers entered Kashmir with orders to stop any further occupation, but they were not allowed to expel anyone from the state. India took the matter to the United Nations. The UN resolution asked both India and Pakistan to vacate the areas they have occupied and hold a referendum under UN observation. The holding of this plebiscite, which India initially supported, was dismissed by India because the 1952 elected Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir
Constituent assembly of Jammu and Kashmir
Constituent assembly of Jammu and Kashmir was a body of representatives elected in 1951 to write the constitution of Jammu and Kashmir.-Background:...

 voted in favor of confirming the Kashmir region's accession to India. Another reason for the abandonment of the referendum is because demographic changes, after 1947, have been effected in Pakistan-administered Kashmir
Pakistan-administered Kashmir
Azad Kashmir borders the Pakistani provinces of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the west, the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan to the north west, the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of People's Republic of China to the north and the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir, to the east.A...

, as generations of Pakistani individuals non-native to the region have been allowed to take residence in Pakistan-administered Kashmir. Furthermore, in Indian-administered Kashmir, the demographics of the Kashmir Valley have also been altered after separatist militants coerced 1/4 million Kashmiri Hindus to leave the region. Moreover, Pakistan failed to withdraw its troops from the Kashmir region as was required under the same U.N. resolution of August 13, 1948 which discussed the plebiscite.

Diplomatic relations between India and Pakistan soured for many other reasons, and eventually resulted in three further wars in Kashmir the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
The Indo-Pakistani War of 1965 was a culmination of skirmishes that took place between April 1965 and September 1965 between Pakistan and India. This conflict became known as the Second Kashmir War fought by India and Pakistan over the disputed region of Kashmir, the first having been fought in 1947...

, the Indo-Pakistan War of 1971 and the Kargil War in 1999
Kargil War
The Kargil War ,, also known as the Kargil conflict, was an armed conflict between India and Pakistan that took place between May and July 1999 in the Kargil district of Kashmir and elsewhere along the Line of Control...

. India has control of 60% of the area of the former Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir; Pakistan controls 30% of the region, known as Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

. China has since occupied 10% of the state in 1962.

The eastern region of the erstwhile princely state of Kashmir has also been beset with a boundary dispute. In the late 19th- and early 20th centuries, although some boundary agreements were signed between Great Britain, Tibet, Afghanistan and Russia over the northern borders of Kashmir, China never accepted these agreements, and the official Chinese position did not change with the communist revolution in 1949. By the mid-1950s the Chinese army had entered the north-east portion of Ladakh:

By 1956–57 they had completed a military road through the Aksai Chin
Aksai Chin
Aksai Chin is one of the two main disputed border areas between China and India, and the other is South Tibet, which comprises most of India's Arunachal Pradesh. It is administered by China as part of Hotan County in the Hotan Prefecture of Xinjiang Autonomous Region, but is also claimed by India...

 area to provide better communication between Xinjiang
Xinjiang
Xinjiang is an autonomous region of the People's Republic of China. It is the largest Chinese administrative division and spans over 1.6 million km2...

 and western Tibet
Tibet
Tibet is a plateau region in Asia, north-east of the Himalayas. It is the traditional homeland of the Tibetan people as well as some other ethnic groups such as Monpas, Qiang, and Lhobas, and is now also inhabited by considerable numbers of Han and Hui people...

. India's belated discovery of this road led to border clashes between the two countries that culminated in the Sino-Indian war of October 1962. China has occupied Aksai Chin since 1962 and, in addition, an adjoining region, the Trans-Karakoram Tract
Trans-Karakoram Tract
The Trans-Karakoram Tract is an area of nearly along both sides of the Shaksgam River, is entirely administered by the People's Republic of China as a part of Kargilik County and Taxkorgan Tajik Autonomous County in the Kashgar Prefecture of Xinjiang Autonomous Region, but claimed by Pakistan...

 was ceded by Pakistan to China in 1963.

For intermittent periods between 1957, when the state approved its own Constitution, to the death of Sheikh Abdullah in 1982, the state had alternating spells of stability and discontent. In the late 1980s however, simmering discontent over the high-handed policies of the Union Government and allegations of the rigging of the 1987 assembly elections triggered a violent uprising which was backed by Pakistan.

Since then, the region has seen a prolonged, bloody conflict between militants and the Indian Army, both of whom have been accused of widespread human rights abuses, including abductions, massacres, rape and looting. The army has officially denied these allegations.
However, militancy in the state has been on the decline since 1996,also again in 2004 with the peace process with India and Pakistan. Furthermore the situation has become increasingly peaceful in recent years.

Geography and climate



Jammu and Kashmir is home to several valleys such as the Kashmir Valley, Tawi Valley, Chenab Valley, Poonch Valley, Sind Valley and Lidder Valley. The main Kashmir valley is 100 km (62.1 mi) wide and 15520.3 km² (5,992.4 sq mi) in area. The Himalayas divide the Kashmir valley from Ladakh while the Pir Panjal range, which encloses the valley from the west and the south, separates it from the Great Plains of northern India. Along the northeastern flank of the Valley runs the main range of the Himalayas. This densely settled and beautiful valley has an average height of 1850 metres (6,069.6 ft) above sea-level but the surrounding Pir Panjal range has an average elevation of 5000 metres (16,404.2 ft).

Because of Jammu and Kashmir's wide range of elevations, its biogeography
Biogeography
Biogeography is the study of the distribution of species , organisms, and ecosystems in space and through geological time. Organisms and biological communities vary in a highly regular fashion along geographic gradients of latitude, elevation, isolation and habitat area...

 is diverse. Northwestern thorn scrub forests
Northwestern thorn scrub forests
The Northwestern thorn scrub forests are a xeric shrubland ecoregion of Pakistan and northwestern India, a region of extreme temperatures and a very climate that was once covered in deciduous forest.-Location and description:...

 and Himalayan subtropical pine forests
Himalayan subtropical pine forests
The Himalayan subtropical pine forests are a large subtropical coniferous forest ecoregion covering portions of Bhutan, India, Nepal, and Pakistan....

 are found in the low elevations of the far southwest. These give way to a broad band of western Himalayan broadleaf forests
Western Himalayan broadleaf forests
The Western Himalayan broadleaf forests is a temperate broadleaf and mixed forest ecoregion which is found in the middle elevations of the western Himalayas, including parts of Nepal, India, and Pakistan.-Setting:...

 running from northwest-southeast across the Kashmir Valley. Rising into the mountains, the broadleaf forests grade into western Himalayan subalpine conifer forests
Western Himalayan subalpine conifer forests
The Western Himalayan subalpine conifer forests is a temperate coniferous forests ecoregion of the middle and upper elevations of the western Middle Himalayas of Nepal, India, and Pakistan.-Setting:...

. Above treeline are found northwestern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows
Northwestern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows
The Northwestern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows is a montane grasslands and shrublands ecoregion of the elevations of the northwestern Himalaya of China, India, and Pakistan.-Setting:...

. Much of the northeast of the state is covered by the Karakoram-West Tibetan Plateau alpine steppe
Karakoram-West Tibetan Plateau alpine steppe
The Karakoram-West Tibetan Plateau alpine steppe is a montane grasslands and shrublands ecoregion found in parts of Pakistan, China, Afghanistan, and India.-Setting:...

. Around the highest elevations, there is no vegetation, simply rock and ice.

The Jhelum River
Jhelum River
Jehlum River or Jhelum River , ) is a river that flows in India and Pakistan. It is the largest and most western of the five rivers of Punjab, and passes through Jhelum District...

 is the only major Himalayan river which flows through the Kashmir valley. The Indus
Indus River
The Indus River is a major river which flows through Pakistan. It also has courses through China and India.Originating in the Tibetan plateau of western China in the vicinity of Lake Mansarovar in Tibet Autonomous Region, the river runs a course through the Ladakh district of Jammu and Kashmir and...

, Tawi
Tawi River
The Tawi is a river that flows through the city of Jammu. Tawi river is also considered sacred and holy, as is generally the case with most rivers in India....

, Ravi
Ravi River
The Ravi is a trans-boundary river flowing through Northwestern India and eastern Pakistan. It is one of the six rivers of the Indus System in Punjab region ....

 and Chenab
Chenab River
The Chenab River چنRiver' آب) is a major river of Jammu and Kashmir and the Punjab in Pakistan. It forms in the upper Himalayas in the Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh, India, and flows through the Jammu region of Jammu and Kashmir into the plains of the Punjab, Pakistan...

 are the major rivers flowing through the state. Jammu and Kashmir is home to several Himalayan glaciers. With an average altitude of 5753 metres (18,874.7 ft) above sea-level, the Siachen Glacier
Siachen Glacier
The Siachen Glacier is located in the eastern Karakoram range in the Himalaya Mountains at about , just east of the Line of Control between India-Pakistan. India controls all of the Siachen Glacier itself, including all tributary glaciers. At long, it is the longest glacier in the Karakoram and...

 is 70 km (43.5 mi) long making it the longest Himalayan glacier.

The climate of Jammu and Kashmir varies greatly owing to its rugged topography. In the south around Jammu, the climate is typically monsoonal, though the region is sufficiently far west to average 40 to 50 mm (1.6 to 2 inches) of rain per months between January and March. In the hot season, Jammu city is very hot and can reach up to 40 °C (104 °F) whilst in July and August, very heavy though erratic rainfall occurs with monthly extremes of up to 650 millimetres (25.5 inches). In September, rainfall declines, and by October conditions are hot but extremely dry, with minimal rainfall and temperatures of around 29 °C (84 °F).

Across from the Pir Panjal range, the South Asian monsoon is no longer a factor and most precipitation falls in the spring from southwest cloudbands. Because of its closeness to the Arabian Sea
Arabian Sea
The Arabian Sea is a region of the Indian Ocean bounded on the east by India, on the north by Pakistan and Iran, on the west by the Arabian Peninsula, on the south, approximately, by a line between Cape Guardafui in northeastern Somalia and Kanyakumari in India...

, Srinagar receives as much as 635 millimetres (25 in) of rain from this source, with the wettest months being March to May with around 85 millimetres (3.3 inches) per month. Across from the main Himalaya Range, even the southwest cloudbands break up and the climate of Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 and Zanskar
Zanskar
Zanskar is a subdistrict or tehsil of the Kargil district, which lies in the eastern half of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The administrative centre is Padum...

 is extremely dry and cold. Annual precipitation is only around 100 mm (4 inches) per year and humidity is very low. This region, almost all above 3,000 metres (9,750 ft) above sea level and winters are extremely cold. In Zanskar, the average January temperature is −20 °C (−4 °F) with extremes as low as −40 °C (−40 °F). All the rivers freeze over and locals actually do river crossings during this period because their high levels from glacier melt in summer inhibits crossing. In summer in Ladakh and Zanskar, days are typically a warm 20°C (68 °F) but with the low humidity and thin air nights can still be cold.

Divisions



Jammu and Kashmir consists of three divisions: Jammu, Kashmir Valley and Ladakh, and is further divided into 22 districts: The Siachen Glacier
Siachen Glacier
The Siachen Glacier is located in the eastern Karakoram range in the Himalaya Mountains at about , just east of the Line of Control between India-Pakistan. India controls all of the Siachen Glacier itself, including all tributary glaciers. At long, it is the longest glacier in the Karakoram and...

, although under Indian military control, does not lie under the administration of the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Kishtwar, Ramban, Reasi
Reasi District
Reasi is one of the oldest towns of the Jammu and Kashmir State. It was the seat of the erstwhile Bhimgarh State, said to have been established by Raja Bhim Dev somewhere in the 8th century. It remained an independent principality till 1822, when Maharaja Gulab Singh the then King of Jammu...

, Samba, Bandipora
Bandipora District
Bandipora district is one of the 22 districts in Jammu and Kashmir state in northern India. Bandipora town is the administrative headquarters of the district. This district was carved out from the erstwhile Baramulla district in 2007. The district is bounded by Kupwara district in the west,...

, Ganderbal, Kulgam and Shopian are newly formed districts.
Jammu
Jammu
Jammu , also known as Duggar, is one of the three administrative divisions within Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state in India.Jammu city is the largest city in Jammu and the winter capital of Jammu and Kashmir...

 region
  1. Kathua District
    Kathua district
    Kathua district is one of 22 administrative districts that comprise the state of Jammu and Kashmir in India. It is surrounded by Jammu to the northwest, the Doda and Udhampur districts to the north, the state of Himachal Pradesh to the east, Punjab to the south, and Pakistan's working boundary to...

  2. Jammu District
    Jammu District
    Jammu District is a district in Jammu and Kashmir. Jammu is the winter capital of the state. The majority of the population of the district practise Hinduism; people of all religions, Muslims, Sikhs live in peace and harmony. Jammu is also known as city of temples with major attraction as Maa...

  3. Samba District
  4. Udhampur District
    Udhampur District
    Udhampur is a district in Jammu and Kashmir. The town of Udhampur is the headquarters of this district.The 2001 census indicates the population of the district to be 743,509. There are 871 females for every 1000 males in the district. The overall literacy rate is 54.16%, with 66.43% for males and...

  5. Reasi District
    Reasi District
    Reasi is one of the oldest towns of the Jammu and Kashmir State. It was the seat of the erstwhile Bhimgarh State, said to have been established by Raja Bhim Dev somewhere in the 8th century. It remained an independent principality till 1822, when Maharaja Gulab Singh the then King of Jammu...

  6. Rajouri District
    Rajouri District
    Rajouri is a district of Jammu province in the Indian-administered Kashmir. It is close to the control line and borders with Ponch to the north and Mirpur to the southwest, both of which are in Pakistan-administered Kashmir....

  7. Poonch District
  8. Doda District
    Doda District
    Area11,691 km²Population525,000 Population density36/km2 Literacy18.5% Doda is a district of Jammu region in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India...

  9. Ramban District
  10. Kishtwar District
    Kashmir Valley region

  • Anantnag District
    Anantnag District
    Anantnag is a district in the state of Jammu and Kashmir in north-western India. It is one of eight districts which make up the Kashmir Valley. The district headquarter is Anantnag...


  • Kulgam District
  • Pulwama District
    Pulwama District
    Area1,398 km²Population649,000 Population density464/km2 Literacy47.76% Pulwama is a district in Jammu and Kashmir, India.-Administration:Pulwama district has 3 tehsils:*Pampore Tehsil*Pulwama Tehsil...


  • Shopian District
  • Budgam District
    Budgam district
    Budgam District is a district of the state of Jammu and Kashmir in India. It was formed in 1979.-Administration:Budgam district consists of 8 blocks: Beerwah, Nagam, Budgam, B.K.Pora, Khan Sahib, Khag, Narbal and Chadoora...


  • Srinagar District
    Srinagar District
    For other uses, see Srinagar .Area141 km2Population900,000 Population density6383/km2 Situated at the center of the Kashmir valley, Srinagar is the most populous district in the state of Jammu and Kashmir,Indian Administered Kashmir and is home to the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir For...


  • Ganderbal District
  • Bandipora District
    Bandipora District
    Bandipora district is one of the 22 districts in Jammu and Kashmir state in northern India. Bandipora town is the administrative headquarters of the district. This district was carved out from the erstwhile Baramulla district in 2007. The district is bounded by Kupwara district in the west,...


  • Baramulla District
  • Kupwara District
    Kupwara District
    Kupwara District is located in Jammu and Kashmir, India.-Administration:Kupwara district has 3 tehsils: Handwara, Karnah and Kupwara.This district consists of 11 blocks: Sogam, Tangdar, Teetwal, Ramhal, Kupwara, Rajwal, Kralpora, Langate, Wavoora, Trehgam and Kalaroo...


    1. Ladakh
      Ladakh
      Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

       region

    2. Kargil District
      Kargil District
      Kargil is a district of Ladakh, Kashmir, India. Kargil lies near the Line of Control facing Pakistan-occupied Kashmir's Baltistan to the west, and Kashmir valley to the south. Zanskar is part of Kargil district along with Suru, Wakha and Dras valleys...


    3. Leh District
      Leh District
      Leh is one of the two districts located in Ladakh, the other being the Kargil District to the west, in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is the second largest district in India in terms of area. It is bounded on the north by Ghanche District , a small border with Xinjiang, China, via the...



    Claimed districts


    Bagh
    Bagh District
    Bagh District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. The district, which had been part of Poonch District, was created in 1988...

      Bhimber
    Bhimber District
    Bhimber is the southernmost of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir it borders Indian-administered Kashmir to the east. The district is located between Latitude: 32-48 to 33-34 and Longitude: 73.55 to 74-45, and has an area of 1516 km². The chief town is Bhimber.-History:The area is...

      Hattian
    Hattian District
    Hattian is one of the ten districts of Azad Kashmir, Pakistan. It was the part of the District of Muzaffarabad until 2009. Its district headquarter is located in the town of Hattian Bala. It consists of three tehsils Chikar, Leepa & Hattian Bala. This district has many Famous visiting points. It is...

      Haveli
    Haveli District
    Haveli District is one of the ten districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. It was formerly a part of Bagh District, but it separated from Bagh in 2009 and become the ninth district of Azad Jammu and Kashmir.The district headquarters of Haveli is Forward Kahuta...

      Kotli
    Kotli District
    Kotli is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Kotli the chief town of the district, was originally a minor town between Mirpur and Muzaffarabad, but has recently seen major growth.- Administration :...

      Mirpur
    Mirpur District
    Mirpur District is a district in the disputed and divided state of [Jammu and Kashmir]. The district is named after the main city, Mirpur. The District of Mirpur has a population of 371,000 and covers an area of . The district is mainly mountainous with some plains...

      Muzaffarabad
    Muzaffarabad District
    Muzaffarabad district of Azad Kashmir is located on the banks of the Jhelum and the Neelum rivers, and is very hilly. The district is bounded to Pakistan in the west and to Kupwara and Baramulla districts that comes under the Kashmir section which is part of the greater dispute between India and...

      Neelum
    Neelum District
    Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

      Poonch  Sudhnati
    Sudhnati District
    -Administration:The district is part of the Vale of Kashmir, which is an area in dispute between India and Pakistan. The district is divided into three tehsils: Pallandri, Mang, and Trarkhal....

     

    Astore
    Astore District
    Astore is one of the six districts of the Gilgit Baltistan. The district contains the Astore Valley and is bounded to the west by Diamer District , to the north by Gilgit District, to the east by Skardu District and to the south by Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Neelum District of Azad Kashmir...

      Diamer
    Diamer District
    Diamer District is one of the seven districts of the Northern Areas of Pakistan. It is the district in which the Karakoram Highway enters that territory from the North-West Frontier Province, the capital of the district is Chilas...

      Ghanche
    Ghanche District
    Ghanche District is the easternmost district of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan. To its northeast is Xinjiang , to the north and northwest is Skardu District, to its west is Astore District and to its south is Ladakh District in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir...

      Ghizer
    Ghizer District
    Ghizer District is northernmost part of the Northern Areas of Pakistan. Its capital is Gakuch. Ghizer is also a contact point between Gilgit and Chitral and also it is contact point to China, Tajikistan via Qurumber pass through Ishkomen/Darkut Yasin . Ghizer is a multi ethnic district and three...

      Gilgit
    Gilgit District
    Gilgit District is one of the districts of the federal territory of Gilgit-Baltistan in northern Pakistan. It was formed in 1970 when Gilgit-Baltistan was federally administered as the "Northern Areas". It is bounded by the Wakhan Corridor to the north; Xinjiang to the northeast and east; Skardu,...

      Skardu
    Skardu District
    Skardu District is part of Baltistan and currently constitutes one of the seven districts of the Gilgit-Baltistan territory of Pakistan...


    Demographics




    Jammu and Kashmir has a Muslim majority population. It is not the only Muslim majority state or territory in India, but shares this characteristic with the tiny union territory of Lakshadweep
    Lakshadweep
    Lakshadweep , formerly known as the Laccadive, Minicoy, and Amindivi Islands, is a group of islands in the Laccadive Sea, 200 to 440 km off the coast of the South West Indian state of Kerala...

     (total area being 11 square miles). Though Islam
    Islam
    Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

     is practiced by about 67% of the population of the state and by 97% of the population of the Kashmir valley, the state has large communities of Buddhists, Hindus (inclusive of Megh Bhagats
    Meghwal
    The Megh , Meghwal or Meghwar people live primarily in northwest India, with a small population in Pakistan. As of 2008, their total population was estimated at 2,807,000, of whom 2,760,000 lived in India...

    ) and Sikh
    Sikh
    A Sikh is a follower of Sikhism. It primarily originated in the 15th century in the Punjab region of South Asia. The term "Sikh" has its origin in Sanskrit term शिष्य , meaning "disciple, student" or शिक्ष , meaning "instruction"...

    s.

    In Jammu, Hindus constitute 65% of the population, Muslims 31% and Sikhs, 4%; In Ladakh, Buddhists constitute about 46% of the population, the remaining being Muslims. The people of Ladakh are of Indo-Tibetan origin, while the southern area of Jammu includes many communities tracing their ancestry to the nearby Indian states of Haryana
    Haryana
    Haryana is a state in India. Historically, it has been a part of the Kuru region in North India. The name Haryana is found mentioned in the 12th century AD by the apabhramsha writer Vibudh Shridhar . It is bordered by Punjab and Himachal Pradesh to the north, and by Rajasthan to the west and south...

     and Punjab, as well as the city of Delhi
    Delhi
    Delhi , officially National Capital Territory of Delhi , is the largest metropolis by area and the second-largest by population in India, next to Mumbai. It is the eighth largest metropolis in the world by population with 16,753,265 inhabitants in the Territory at the 2011 Census...

    . In totality, the Muslims constitute 67% of the population, the Hindus about 30%, the Buddhists 1%, and the Sikhs 2% of the population.

    According to political scientist Alexander Evans
    Alexander Evans
    Alexander Evans was a U.S. Representative from Maryland.Born in Elkton, Maryland, Evans attended the public schools and the local academy at Elkton. He was a civil engineer's assistant, and later studied law...

    , approximately 95% of the total population of 160,000–170,000 of Kashmiri Brahmins, also called Kashmiri Pandits, (i.e. approximately 150,000 to 160,000) left the Kashmir Valley in 1990 as militancy engulfed the state. According to an estimate by the Central Intelligence Agency
    Central Intelligence Agency
    The Central Intelligence Agency is a civilian intelligence agency of the United States government. It is an executive agency and reports directly to the Director of National Intelligence, responsible for providing national security intelligence assessment to senior United States policymakers...

    , about 300,000 Kashmiri Pandits from the entire state of Jammu and Kashmir have been internally displaced
    Internally displaced person
    An internally displaced person is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country's borders. They are often referred to as refugees, although they do not fall within the current legal definition of a refugee. At the end of 2006 it was estimated there were...

     due to the ongoing violence.
    Division Population % Muslim % Hindu % Sikh % Buddhist and other
    Kashmir (53.9%) 5,476,970 97.16% 1.84% 0.88% 0.11%
    Jammu (43.7%) 4,430,191 30.69% 65.23% 3.57% 0.51%
    Ladakh (2.3%) 236,539 47.40% 6.22% 45.87%
    Jammu and Kashmir 10,143,700 66.97% 29.63% 2.03% 1.36%
    Statistics calculated from the 2001 Census India District Profiles
    There are roughly 1.5 million refugees from Indian Administered Kashmir in Azad Kashmir and Pakistan. An estimated 50–100,000 Kashmiri Muslims and 150–300,000 Kashmiri Pandits have been internally displaced
    Internally displaced person
    An internally displaced person is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country's borders. They are often referred to as refugees, although they do not fall within the current legal definition of a refugee. At the end of 2006 it was estimated there were...

     due to militancy.


    In Jammu and Kashmir, the principal spoken languages are Kashmiri
    Kashmiri language
    Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

    , Urdu
    Urdu
    Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

    , Dogri, Pahari
    Pahari languages
    The Pahari languages are a geographic group of Indic languages spoken in the lower ranges of the Himalayas, from Nepal in the east to the Indian states of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir in the west.-Classification:The Pahari languages fall into three groups:*Eastern, consisting...

    , Balti
    Balti language
    Balti is a language spoken in Baltistan, in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and adjoining parts of Ladakh. Baltistan, before 1948, was part of Ladakh province. The Balti language is a dialect of the Ladakhi language, a form of Tibetan. It is mutually intelligible with Ladakhi proper and Burig...

    , Ladakhi, Gojri
    Gojri
    Gojri, also known as Gujari is a variety of Rajasthani spoken by the Gujjars of Northern-Pakistan, India and Afghanistan.Rajasthani, Marwari and Gujarati are evolved from Gujari. The language was known as Gujjar bhakha or Gurjar Apabhramsha lately. It was used as literary language as early as 12th...

    , Shina
    Shina language
    Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

     and Pashto. However, Urdu written in the Persian script is the official language of the state. Many speakers of these languages use Hindi
    Hindi
    Standard Hindi, or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi, also known as Manak Hindi , High Hindi, Nagari Hindi, and Literary Hindi, is a standardized and sanskritized register of the Hindustani language derived from the Khariboli dialect of Delhi...

     or English as a second language.

    Statehood


    Kashmir Valley dominated by ethnic Kashmiris have largely driven the Azadi campaign. Non-Kashmiri Muslim ethnic groups (Paharis, Sheenas, Gujjars and Bakarwalas), who dominate areas along the Line of Control, have remained indifferent to the separatist campaign. Jammu province region has 70:30 Hindu-Muslim ratio. Parts of the region were militancy-hit, but violence there has ebbed along with the Valley after India and Pakistan started a peace process in 2004.

    Dogras (67%) are the single largest group in the multi-ethnic region of Punjabis, Paharis, Bakerwals and Gujjars. Statehood is demand in Hindu-dominated districts. Ladakh is the largest region in the state with over two hundred thousand people. Its two districts are Leh (77% Buddhist) and Kargil (80% Muslim population). Union territory status has been the key demand of Leh Buddhists for many years.

    Politics and government



    Jammu and Kashmir is the only state in India which enjoys special autonomy under Article 370
    Article 370
    Article 370 of the Indian constitution grants special autonomous status to Jammu and Kashmir.-Text of Article 370:In view of its importance the text of the article 370 is reproduced below:Article 370 of the Constitution of India...

     of the Constitution of India according to which, no law enacted by the Parliament of India
    Parliament of India
    The Parliament of India is the supreme legislative body in India. Founded in 1919, the Parliament alone possesses legislative supremacy and thereby ultimate power over all political bodies in India. The Parliament of India comprises the President and the two Houses, Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha...

    , except for those in the field of defence, communication and foreign policy, will be extendable in Jammu and Kashmir unless it is ratified by the state legislature of Jammu and Kashmir. Subsequently, jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of India
    Supreme Court of India
    The Supreme Court of India is the highest judicial forum and final court of appeal as established by Part V, Chapter IV of the Constitution of India...

     over Jammu and Kashmir has been extended.

    Jammu and Kashmir is also the only Indian state that has its own flag and constitution, and Indians from other states cannot purchase land or property in the state. Designed by the then ruling National Conference, the flag of Jammu and Kashmir features a plough
    Plough
    The plough or plow is a tool used in farming for initial cultivation of soil in preparation for sowing seed or planting. It has been a basic instrument for most of recorded history, and represents one of the major advances in agriculture...

     on a red background symbolizing labour substituted the Maharaja's state flag. The three stripes represent the three distinct administrative divisions of the state, namely Jammu, Valley of Kashmir, and Ladakh.

    Since 1990, the Armed Forces Act
    Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958
    The Armed Forces Act , was passed on September 11, 1958, by the Parliament of India. It conferred special powers upon armed forces in what the act calls "disturbed areas" in the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura...

    , which gives special powers to the Indian security forces, has been enforced in Jammu and Kashmir. The decision to evoke this act was criticized by the Human Rights Watch
    Human Rights Watch
    Human Rights Watch is an international non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on human rights. Its headquarters are in New York City and it has offices in Berlin, Beirut, Brussels, Chicago, Geneva, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, Moscow, Paris, San Francisco, Tokyo,...

    .

    Like all the states of India, Jammu and Kashmir has a multi-party democratic system of governance with a bicameral legislature. At the time of drafting of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, 100 seats were earmarked for direct elections from territorial constituencies. Of these, 25 seats were reserved for the areas of Jammu and Kashmir State that came under Pakistani occupation, which came down to 24 after the 12th amendment of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir:
    After a delimitation in 1988, the total number of seats increased to 111, of which 87 were within Indian administered territory. The Jammu & Kashmir Assembly is the only state in India to have a 6 year as against the norm of a 5 year term followed in every other state's Assembly. There was indication from the previous INC Government to bring parity with the other states, but this does not seem to have received the required support to pass into law.

    Influential political parties include the Jammu & Kashmir National Conference
    Jammu & Kashmir National Conference
    The Jammu & Kashmir National Conference is a State political party in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India. Led at the time of Indian Independence in 1947 by Sheikh Abdullah, it dominated electoral politics in the state for many decades...

     (NC), the Indian National Congress
    Indian National Congress
    The Indian National Congress is one of the two major political parties in India, the other being the Bharatiya Janata Party. It is the largest and one of the oldest democratic political parties in the world. The party's modern liberal platform is largely considered center-left in the Indian...

     (INC), the Jammu and Kashmir People's Democratic Party
    Jammu and Kashmir People's Democratic Party
    The Jammu and Kashmir People's Democratic Party is a state political party in Jammu and Kashmir, India. It was founded in 1999 by the former Union Home Minister, Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, and captured power in the state of Jammu and Kashmir in October 2002 assembly elections. Since 2004 it has one...

     (PDP), the Bharatiya Janata Party
    Bharatiya Janata Party
    The Bharatiya Janata Party ,; translation: Indian People's Party) is one of the two major political parties in India, the other being the Indian National Congress. Established in 1980, it is India's second largest political party in terms of representation in the parliament...

     (BJP) and other smaller regional parties. After dominating Kashmir's politics for years, National Conference's influence waned in 2002, when INC and PDP formed a political alliance and rose to power. Under the power sharing agreement, INC leader Ghulam Nabi Azad
    Ghulam Nabi Azad
    Ghulam Nabi Azad is an Indian politician from the Indian National Congress and the current Minister of Health and Family Welfare of the Government of India....

     replaced PDP's Mufti Mohammad Sayeed as the Chief Minister
    Chief Minister
    A Chief Minister is the elected head of government of a sub-national state, provinces of Sri Lanka, Pakistan, notably a state of India, a territory of Australia or a British Overseas Territory that has attained self-government...

     of Jammu and Kashmir in late 2005. However, in 2008, PDP withdrew its support from the government on the issue of temporary diversion of nearly 40 acres (16.2 ha) of land to Sri Amarnath Shrine Board. In the 2008 Kashmir Elections that were held from 17 November to 24 December, the National Conference
    Jammu & Kashmir National Conference
    The Jammu & Kashmir National Conference is a State political party in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India. Led at the time of Indian Independence in 1947 by Sheikh Abdullah, it dominated electoral politics in the state for many decades...

     party and the Congress
    Indian National Congress
    The Indian National Congress is one of the two major political parties in India, the other being the Bharatiya Janata Party. It is the largest and one of the oldest democratic political parties in the world. The party's modern liberal platform is largely considered center-left in the Indian...

     party together won enough seats in the state assembly to form a ruling alliance.

    Some Kashmiris, especially those residing in Kashmir valley, demand greater autonomy, sovereignty and even independence from India. Due to the economic integration of Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of India, separatist movements across Kashmir valley were on a decline. However, following the unrest in 2008, which included more than 500,000 protesters at a rally on 18 August, secessionist movements gained a boost.

    The 2009 edition of the Freedom in the World (report) by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
    United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
    The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees , also known as The UN Refugee Agency is a United Nations agency mandated to protect and support refugees at the request of a government or the UN itself and assists in their voluntary repatriation, local integration or resettlement to...

     rated Jammu and Kashmir to be partly free, while in comparison Pakistan-administered Kashmir
    Pakistan-administered Kashmir
    Azad Kashmir borders the Pakistani provinces of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the west, the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan to the north west, the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of People's Republic of China to the north and the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir, to the east.A...

     was rated to be not free.

    Economy



    Jammu and Kashmir's economy is predominantly dependent on agriculture and allied activities. The Kashmir valley is also known for its sericulture
    Sericulture
    Sericulture, or silk farming, is the rearing of silkworms for the production of raw silk.Although there are several commercial species of silkworms, Bombyx mori is the most widely used and intensively studied. According to Confucian texts, the discovery of silk production by B...

     and cold-water fisheries. Wood from Kashmir is used to make high-quality cricket bats, popularly known as Kashmir Willow. Kashmiri saffron
    Saffron
    Saffron is a spice derived from the flower of Crocus sativus, commonly known as the saffron crocus. Crocus is a genus in the family Iridaceae. Each saffron crocus grows to and bears up to four flowers, each with three vivid crimson stigmas, which are each the distal end of a carpel...

     is also very famous and brings the state a handsome amount of foreign exchange. Agricultural exports from Jammu and Kashmir include apples, barley, cherries, corn, millet, oranges, rice, peaches, pears, saffron, sorghum, vegetables, and wheat, while manufactured exports include handicrafts, rugs, and shawls.

    Horticulture plays a vital role in the economic development of the state. With an annual turnover of over Rs. 300 crore, apart from foreign exchange of over Rs. 80 crore, this sector is the next biggest source of income in the state’s economy. The region of Kashmir is known for its horticulture industry and is the wealthiest region in the state. Horticultural produce from the state includes apples, apricots, cherries, pears, plums, almonds and walnuts.

    The Doda
    Doda
    Doda is a town and a notified area committee in Doda district in Jammu & Kashmir of India.-Geography:Doda is located at . It has an average elevation of 1107 metres .-Demographics:...

     district has deposits of high-grade sapphire
    Sapphire
    Sapphire is a gemstone variety of the mineral corundum, an aluminium oxide , when it is a color other than red or dark pink; in which case the gem would instead be called a ruby, considered to be a different gemstone. Trace amounts of other elements such as iron, titanium, or chromium can give...

    . Though small, the manufacturing and services sector is growing rapidly, especially in the Jammu division. In recent years, several consumer goods companies have opened manufacturing units in the region. The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM)
    ASSOCHAM
    The ASSOciated CHAMbers of Commerce and Industry of India is the umbrella body of chambers of commerce in India. The organisation represents the interests of trade and commerce in India, and interacting with the Government of India on policy issues, and liaisoning with their international...

     has identified several industrial sectors which can attract investment in the state, and accordingly, it is working with the union and the state government to set up industrial parks and special economic zones. In the fiscal year 2005–06, exports from the state amounted to Rs. 1,150 crore. However, industrial development in the state faces several major constraints including extreme mountainous landscape and power shortage.

    The Government of India has been keen to economically integrate Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of India. The state is one of the largest recipients of grants from New Delhi, totaling $ 812 million per year. It also has a mere 4% incidence of poverty, one of the lowest in the country. In an attempt to improve the infrastructure in the state, the Indian government has commenced work on the ambitious Kashmir Railway
    Kashmir Railway
    The Kashmir Railway is a railway line being built in India to connect the state of Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of the country. Officially termed the Jammu Udhampur Srinagar Baramulla Railway Link , the railway starts from Jammu and, when completed, will travel for to the city of Baramulla on...

     project which is being constructed by Konkan Railway Corporation
    Konkan Railway Corporation
    Konkan Railway Corporation is a subsidiary of the Indian Railways . It operates the Konkan Railways, a subsidiary zone of the Indian Railways. It is headquartered at Belapur in Navi Mumbai. The company started its full operations of trains on 26 January 1998...

     and IRCON at a cost of more than US$2.5 billion. The Jammu & Kashmir Bank
    Jammu & Kashmir Bank
    The Jammu & Kashmir Bank was founded on October 1, 1938 under letters patent issued by the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir, Hari Singh. The Maharaja invited eminent Kashmiri investors to become founding directors and shareholders of the bank, the most notable of which were Abdul Aziz Mantoo, Pesten...

    , which is listed as a S&P CNX 500
    S&P CNX 500
    The S&P CNX 500 is India’s first broad-based stock market index of the Indian stock market. The S&P CNX 500 represents about 96% of total market capitalization and about 93% of the total turnover on the National Stock Exchange of India ....

     conglomerate, is based in the state. It reported a net profit of Rs. 598 million in 2008.

    Before insurgency intensified in 1989, tourism formed an important part of the Kashmiri economy. The tourism economy in the Kashmir valley was worst hit. However, the holy shrines of Jammu and the Buddhist monasteries of Ladakh continue to remain popular pilgrimage and tourism destinations. Every year, thousands of Hindu pilgrim
    Pilgrim
    A pilgrim is a traveler who is on a journey to a holy place. Typically, this is a physical journeying to some place of special significance to the adherent of a particular religious belief system...

    s visit holy shrines of Vaishno Devi
    Vaishno Devi
    Vaishno Devi Mandir is one of the holy Hindu temples dedicated to Shakti, located in the hills of Vaishno Devi, Jammu and Kashmir, India. In Hinduism, Vaishno Devi, also known as Mata Rani and Vaishnavi, is a manifestation of the Mother Goddess.The temple is near the town of Katra, in the Reasi...

     and Amarnath which has had significant impact on the state's economy. The Vaishno Devi yatra alone contributes Rs. 475 crore to the local economy annually.

    Tourism in the Kashmir valley has rebounded in recent years and in 2009, the state became one of the top tourist destinations of India. Gulmarg
    Gulmarg
    Gulmarg is a town, a hill station and a notified area committee in Baramula district in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.-Geography:Gulmarg is located 52 km from Srinagar. It is located at . It has an average elevation of .-Demographics:...

    , one of the most popular ski resort
    Ski resort
    A ski resort is a resort developed for skiing and other winter sports. In Europe a ski resort is a town or village in a ski area - a mountainous area, where there are ski trails and supporting services such as hotels and other accommodation, restaurants, equipment rental and a ski lift system...

     destinations in India, is also home to the world's highest green golf course
    Golf course
    A golf course comprises a series of holes, each consisting of a teeing ground, fairway, rough and other hazards, and a green with a flagstick and cup, all designed for the game of golf. A standard round of golf consists of playing 18 holes, thus most golf courses have this number of holes...

    . However with the decrease in violence in the state has boosted the states economy specifically tourism.
    Year Gross State Domestic Product (in million INR
    Indian rupee
    The Indian rupee is the official currency of the Republic of India. The issuance of the currency is controlled by the Reserve Bank of India....

    )
    1980 11,860
    1985 22,560
    1990 36,140
    1995 80,970
    2000 147,500
    2006 539,850

    Culture




    Ladakh is famous for its unique Indo
    Culture of India
    India's languages, religions, dance, music, architecture, food and customs differ from place to place within the country, but nevertheless possess a commonality....

    -Tibetan culture
    Tibetan culture
    Tibetan culture developed under the influence of a number of factors. Contact with neighboring countries and cultures- including Nepal, India and China - have influenced the development of Tibetan culture, but the Himalayan region's remoteness and inaccessibility have preserved distinctive local...

    . Chanting in Sanskrit
    Sanskrit
    Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

     and Tibetan language
    Tibetan language
    The Tibetan languages are a cluster of mutually-unintelligible Tibeto-Burman languages spoken primarily by Tibetan peoples who live across a wide area of eastern Central Asia bordering the Indian subcontinent, including the Tibetan Plateau and the northern Indian subcontinent in Baltistan, Ladakh,...

     forms an integral part of Ladakh's Buddhist lifestyle. Annual masked dance festivals, weaving
    Weaving
    Weaving is a method of fabric production in which two distinct sets of yarns or threads are interlaced at right angles to form a fabric or cloth. The other methods are knitting, lace making and felting. The longitudinal threads are called the warp and the lateral threads are the weft or filling...

     and archery
    Archery
    Archery is the art, practice, or skill of propelling arrows with the use of a bow, from Latin arcus. Archery has historically been used for hunting and combat; in modern times, however, its main use is that of a recreational activity...

     are an important part of traditional life in Ladakh. Ladakhi food has much in common with Tibetan food
    Cuisine of Tibet
    Tibetan cuisine reflects local climes and customs. Few crops grow at the high altitudes that characterize Tibet, although a few areas in Tibet are low enough to grow such crops as rice, oranges, bananas, and lemon. The most important crop is barley. Flour milled from roasted barley, called tsampa,...

    , the most prominent foods being thukpa
    Thukpa
    Thukpa is a Tibetan noodle soup, usually served with meat. It is popular in Tibet, Bhutan, Nepal, and also in the states of Sikkim, Ladakh, Arunachal Pradesh and some other parts of India. The food is widely available in restaurants in these regions...

    , noodle soup; and tsampa
    Tsampa
    Tsampa is a Tibetan staple foodstuff, particularly prominent in the central part of the region. It is roasted flour, usually barley flour and sometimes also wheat flour or rice flour...

    , known in Ladakhi as Ngampe, roasted barley flour. Typical garb includes gonchas of velvet, elaborately embroidered waistcoats and boots, and gonads or hats. People, adorned with gold and silver ornaments and turquoise headgears throng the streets during various Ladakhi festivals.


    The Dumhal is a famous dance in the Kashmir valley, performed by men of the Wattal region. The women perform the Rouff, another traditional folk dance. Kashmir has been noted for its fine arts for centuries, including poetry and handicrafts. Shikaras
    Shikaras
    The shikara is a type of wooden ship found on Dal Lake and other water bodies of Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir, India. Shikaras are of varied sizes and are used for multiple purposes, including transportation of people. Drivers use oars having a unique spade-shaped bottom to row the shikara. A usual...

    , traditional small wooden boats, and houseboat
    Houseboat
    A houseboat is a boat that has been designed or modified to be used primarily as a human dwelling. Some houseboats are not motorized, because they are usually moored, kept stationary at a fixed point and often tethered to land to provide utilities...

    s are a common feature in various lakes and rivers across the Valley.

    The Constitution of India
    Constitution of India
    The Constitution of India is the supreme law of India. It lays down the framework defining fundamental political principles, establishes the structure, procedures, powers, and duties of government institutions, and sets out fundamental rights, directive principles, and the duties of citizens...

     does not allow people from regions other than Jammu and Kashmir to purchase land in the state. As a consequence, houseboats became popular among those who were unable to purchase land in the Valley and has now become an integral part of the Kashmiri lifestyle.

    Kawa, traditional green tea with spices and almond, is consumed all through the day in the chilled winter climate of Kashmir. Most of the buildings in the Valley and Ladakh are made from softwood and is influenced by Indian, Tibetan
    Tibetan culture
    Tibetan culture developed under the influence of a number of factors. Contact with neighboring countries and cultures- including Nepal, India and China - have influenced the development of Tibetan culture, but the Himalayan region's remoteness and inaccessibility have preserved distinctive local...

    , and Islamic architecture
    Islamic architecture
    Islamic architecture encompasses a wide range of both secular and religious styles from the foundation of Islam to the present day, influencing the design and construction of buildings and structures in Islamic culture....

    .

    Jammu's Dogra culture and tradition is much similar to that of neighbouring Punjab
    Punjab (India)
    Punjab ) is a state in the northwest of the Republic of India, forming part of the larger Punjab region. The state is bordered by the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh to the east, Haryana to the south and southeast and Rajasthan to the southwest as well as the Pakistani province of Punjab to the...

     and Himachal Pradesh
    Himachal Pradesh
    Himachal Pradesh is a state in Northern India. It is spread over , and is bordered by the Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir on the north, Punjab on the west and south-west, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh on the south, Uttarakhand on the south-east and by the Tibet Autonomous Region on the east...

    . Traditional Punjabi festivals such as Lohri and Vaisakhi
    Vaisakhi
    Vaisakhi is an ancient harvest festival celebrated across North Indian states, especially Punjab by all Punjabis regardless of religion. In Sikhism the Khalsa was founded on same day as the Vaisakhi festival, so Sikhs celebrate twice as much....

     are celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm throughout the region, along with Accession Day
    Accession Day (Jammu and Kashmir)
    Accession Day is a holiday in India's northernmost state, Jammu and Kashmir, commemorating 26 October 1947, when Maharaja Hari Singh signed of the Instrument of Accession, in which Jammu and Kashmir joined the Dominion of India. Festivities of the day include holding rallies, bursting of...

    , an annual holiday which commemorates the accession of Jammu & Kashmir to the Dominion of India. After Dogras, Gujjar
    Gujjar
    The Gurjar are an ethnic group in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Alternative spellings include Gurjara, Gujar, Gurjjara and Gūrjara. The spelling Gurjara or Gurjar is preferable to the rest....

    s
    form the second-largest ethnic group in Jammu. Known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle, Gujjars are also found in large numbers in the Kashmir valley. Similar to Gujjars, Gaddis are primarily herdsmen who hail from the Chamba region in Himachal Pradesh. Gaddis are generally associated with emotive music played on the flute
    Flute
    The flute is a musical instrument of the woodwind family. Unlike woodwind instruments with reeds, a flute is an aerophone or reedless wind instrument that produces its sound from the flow of air across an opening...

    . The Bakkarwalas found both in Jammu and the Vale of Kashmir are wholly nomadic pastoral people who move along the Himalayan slopes in search for pastures for their huge flocks of goats and sheep.

    Education



    In 1970, the state government of Jammu and Kashmir established its own education board and university. Education in the state is divided into primary, middle, high secondary, college and university level. Jammu and Kashmir follows 10+2 pattern for education of children. This is handled by Jammu and Kashmir State Board of School Education
    Jammu and Kashmir State Board of School Education
    The Jammu and Kashmir State Board of School Education is the main board of school education in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. It is based in Srinagar and is under the administration of the state government of Jammu and Kashmir...

     (abbreviated as JKBOSE). Various private and public schools are recognized by the board to impart education to students. Board examinations are conducted for students in class VIII, X and XII. In addition there are various Kendriya Vidyalayas (run by the Government of India) and Indian Army schools that also impart secondary school education. These schools follow the Central Board of Secondary Education
    Central Board of Secondary Education
    The Central Board of Secondary Education is a Board of Education for public and private schools, under the Union Government of India.-History:...

     pattern.

    Notable higher education or research institutes in Jammu and Kashmir include Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences Soura Srinagar, National Institute of Technology Srinagar
    National Institutes of Technology
    The National Institutes of Technology , are a group of higher education engineering institutes in India. Comprising thirty autonomous institutes, they are located in one each major state/territory of India. On their inception decades ago, all NITs were referred as Regional Engineering Colleges ...

    , Government College of Engineering and Technology, Jammu
    Government College of Engineering and Technology, Jammu
    The Government College of Engineering and Technology, Jammu is an engineering institute located in Jammu, Jammu and Kashmir, India. It offers the degree of Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Sciences, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering and...

     and the Government Medical College of Jammu. University-level education is provided by University of Jammu
    University of Jammu
    The University of Jammu was established in 1969 by an Act of the State Legislature which effectively bifurcated the erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir University into the Universities of Jammu and Kashmir respectively. The University is at present located on the banks of the Tawi River...

    , University of Kashmir
    University of Kashmir
    -Faculties/Departments:* Arts** Department of Arabic** Department of Urdu** Department of English** Department of Kashmiri** Department of Foreign Languages** Department of Library and Information Science** Department of Linguistics...

    , Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Jammu
    Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Jammu
    Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Jammu came into existence on 20 September 1999 following the amendment in Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology Act 1982 through the State legislature...

    , Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir
    Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir
    Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences & Technology of Kashmir is an agricultural university located in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India...

    , Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University
    Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University
    The Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University, commonly referred to as SMVD University or SMVDU, is a Statutory university on an campus located near Katra, Jammu and Kashmir. It is situated near the Shrine of the Mata Vaishno Devi, after which it is named...

    , Islamic University of Science & Technology
    Islamic University of Science & Technology
    The Islamic University of Science & Technology is a public university located at Awantipora, Pulwama, Jammu and Kashmir, India. The university has been set up as a centre for higher learning for the people of the Jammu and Kashmir State and its neighbouring regions. The University aspires to be the...

    , Baba Ghulam Shah Badhshah University
    Baba Ghulam Shah Badhshah University
    The Baba Ghulam Shah Badhshah University is a university in India which came into existence by the Act of the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly in 2002...

    , Institution of Technicians and Engineers (Kashmir), and Government Degree College Kathua
    Government Degree College Kathua
    Government Degree College is the co-ed college in Kathua and serves to the people of Kathua district and its adjoining areas. It is about 3 km from the heart of the Kathua city. It runs courses in Sciences, Arts, Firshries, Computer Sciences for three years degree courses. The college is...

    .

    See also


    • Zomia (geography)
      Zomia (geography)
      Zomia is a geographical term coined in 2002 by historian Willem van Schendel of the University of Amsterdam to refer to the huge massif of mainland Southeast Asia that has historically been beyond the control of governments based in the population centers of the lowlands...



    External links