An understanding of the regional importance of Kashmir


In this article, I will explain the regional importance of Kashmir not only for India but for Pakistan, China and some western countries. My article includes history of Kashmir, the geopolitical as well as regional importance of Kashmir, and about natural Kashmir and man-made Kashmir.

Introduction

Heaven as enumerated in the holy Bhagavat Geeta, is a place that is full of pleasure,purity and joy. Kashmir is landlocked region in south-Asia, fitted between Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and China. Kashmir is considered as "paradise" or "heaven" on earth because of its scenic-splendor, snow-capped mountains, plentiful wildlife, hospitable people, and local handicraft

Lookback

The history of Kashmir has been both royal and full of turmoil. The Brahmins was the first inhabitants of Kashmir and lived in the mountainous region of Kashmir (Jammu- "city of temples"). Ashoka the Great introduced the spread of Buddhism in Kashmir. In 1346 a Hindu king was defeated by Shams-ud-Din who became the first Muslim ruler of Kashmir, later on Raja Ranjeet Singh however managed to conquer Kashmir again and made it a part of the Sikh Empire. With the arrival of the Britishers Kashmir was snatched and later sold to Raja Gulab Singh in 1846 by the 'treaty of Amritsar'. His kingdom further passed to his successor Maharaja Hari Singh until after the partition Pak forcibly tried to occupy Kashmir, India defended Kashmir and Maharaja agreed to allow Kashmir to be a part of the Indian territory. Pakistan never accepted Kashmir to be a part of India and always protested resulting into wars in 1947,1965,1971, and 1999 and when they were not able to win the wars they cowardly started to tie up with terrorists and infiltrated the lands of Kashmir spreading terror and mass killing.

Importance of Kashmir

The Geo-politico-economic importance of Kashmir lies wrapped one on the other and eventually interweave together. Kashmir is not only important to India and Pakistan but also majorly to China and the West world. The following points will explain the importance of Kashmir: -

  1. The natural hub of glaciers and water bodies : The Biafo glacier, Siachen glacier, Baltoro glacier, Hispur glacier, Nabru glacier are some prominent glaciers of the state. Pakistan is heavily dependent on the prominent rivers of Kashmir for agricultural as well as household purposes. Kashmir's fresh water lakes are extremely resourceful for both the nations and has been a hot issue between the nations.

    Indus Water Treaty,1960

    Eastern Rivers (IND controlled):
    • Ravi
    • Beas
    • Sutlej


    Western Rivers(PAK controlled).:
    • Jhelum
    • Chenab
    • Indus


    Controlling these rivers through dams and canals have been beneficial for both India and Pakistan, Mangla Dam built on the Indus is one of the largest dam projects in the world. Various hydroelectricity projects are on these rivers alight the life of millions of people


  2. Siachen Glacier: It is the longest glacier in the Karakorum and second-longest non-polar glacier (after Fedchenko glacier, Tajikistan). It is the world's highest battlefield. It is the source of Nubra river which feeds the mighty Indus. This is in controversy since 1984, the major strategic point here is the Saltoro ridge where clashes between India and China often occur. Indian military forces are well trained to not even survive but also to guard in the diverse climatic conditions.


  3. Silk Route: The Historic silk route extending from China to Rome passes through Kashmir and importantly links Pakistan and China. Both Pakistan and China have border disputes on Pakistan occupied Kashmir and Aksai-Chin. Eventually, Pak and China are close diplomatic and military allies of each other.

    Discussing the strategic importance of Kashmir, when the Silk route was opened in 1965, Pak handed over full control of Gilgit to China (building a modern air base there), form where China can ponder deepest into the Indian territory


The Geo-political importance of Kashmir

The Kashmir issue over time has been well transformed from a regional issue between India and Pak to an international concern. The transient motives of nations have reviewed the paradise on earth to a hub of terror. The desire of west world to make a stand into the biggest continent can be fulfilled up to some extend by interfering into the Kashmir. Like Kosovo and Bosnia if Kashmir becomes an autonomous state (as some groups living in Kashmir think) it would automatically promote western interference of military troops as are in Afghanistan.Kashmir have been proved to be beneficial culturally, socially, economically, politically and militarily for India, Pakistan, China as well as the West world.

Natural Kashmir Vs Man-made Kashmir

On one hand, the state of Kashmir is world famous for its scenery, mountains, lakes, blossoms, while on the other hand, the painful truth is that the place is indulged into mass murdering of Hindu pandits, moderate-Muslims, Sikhs and is now internationally recognized as a 'hub of terror'. What God gave us was 'paradise' but people turned it into a 'hell', one cannot imagine what inhuman techniques are used by the terrorists to fulfill their needs. In the words of famous political scientist Laski, 'A society which is empowered and knows to talk need not to fight' and that is what distinguishes us from animals. Only cooperation and understanding can save the beautiful landscape from turning into a bloody battlefield. The major role to establish peace or anarchy in the state are its citizens, government and security personnel, the climatic beauty and regional significance standstill upon these three pillars.


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