The Government of India administers almost 60% of the state of Jammu and Kashmir and is unequivocal on its stand - "Kashmir is an integral part of India". The official map of the state, as approved by the Indian Government, shows the entire state of Jammu and Kashmir, including Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Kashmir, and Aksai Chin, as part of Indian Territory. According to the Indian government the Instrument of Accession was a legal act executed without any deceit or coercion.Read in detail
Pakistan authorities refer to the 1933 Pakistan Declaration and claim Kashmir to be one of the Indian units that were to secede from India and join Pakistan. Pakistan claims that the accession to India was unconstitutional since it violated the terms of the 'Standstill Agreement' between Pakistan and the Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan was formed on the basis of the Two Nation Theory. Since most of the people inhabiting the Kashmir valley are Muslims,Read in detail
In 1947, before they withdrew colonial authority, the British Government divided the Indian subcontinent into two states, based largely on religious demographics. The primarily Muslim nation, Dominion of Pakistan, was formed on August 14, 1947 and the largely Hindu state, Union of India, was formed on August 15, 1947. In one of the largest instances of population transfers post World War II, over 11.2 million people moved from their homes as a result of the partition. Over 5 million Hindus and Sikhs moved to India, primarily from West Punjab, and about 6 million Muslims moved from India to present-day Pakistan. A poorly executed transfer resulted in violent communal disputes and caused about 500,000 deaths.
In 1947, Maharaja Hari Singh Dogra, the great-grandson of Gulab Singh, was offered a choice - the Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir could join either of the newly formed states of India and Pakistan or could remain independent. The undecided Maharaja entered into a Standstill Agreement with Pakistan allowing for continuation of normal trade and exchanges till a settlement was reached. In the meantime, a rebel faction from Poonch revolted against the Maharaja's rule and declared the formation of Azad Kashmir, an independent government. By the October of 1947, the Poonch rebel faction invited Pakistani guerilla troops to engage in a campaign to dissuade Kashmir from joining India. The guerilla troops left a trail of plunder and murder across Kashmir. Perturbed by the unsettling new development, Maharaja Hari Singh appealed to the British Viceroy Lord Mountbatten. As suggested by Mountbatten, the Maharaja agreed to accede to India on the condition that Indian troops would evict the Pakistani lashkars from Jammu and Kashmir. On October 26, 1947, the king executed the Instrument of Accession and Jammu and Kashmir was thus poised to join the Dominion of India. Mountbatten formally accepted the accession. With this, the Maharaja handed over the valley to India. By the instrument of Accession, the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir accepted three subjects as ones on which the Dominion Legislature can make laws. They are- Defense, External Affairs, and Communication. Lord Mountbatten remarked that the state's accession be eventually settled by a referendum. Pakistan contested the accession on the grounds that Kashmir's Standstill Agreement with Pakistan was still in force at the time. India has maintained ever since that the state has been irrevocable acceded to India following the Instrument of Accession, Pakistan has maintained that the people of Kashmir be allowed to participate in a referendum to settle the issue.Three Wars and a Line of Control
Three major and bloody wars have been fought by the two countries over Kashmir since 1947. The Indo-Pakistan War of 1947 resulted from Maharaja Hari Singh's execution of the Instrument of Accession. When war escalated to vociferous levels India invited mediation by the international community and the United Nations. The war ended in December 1948 by which time the Line of Control (LOC) was established to demarcate the administrative segments of Kashmir. The international boundary dispute was still left pending. The war of 1965 ended after bleeding the two countries. Thousands of lives had been lost and the intervention of USA and erstwhile USSR had become necessary. India recorded a victory but the damages to both nations. On January 10 1966, the Tashkent Declaration was signed and the two nations withdrew forces to the LOC. The war of 1971 was unrelated to the Kashmir issue and centered on Bangladesh.
Later, in 1999, the Kargil War reopened raw wounds. Pakistani troops infiltrated the Kargil district across the LOC and assisted insurgents in the area. India retaliated and the war that ensued caused panic in the international community with the threat of a nuclear war becoming imminent. International pressure forced Pakistan to withdraw. Besides, with the Indian army having reclaimed the Tiger Hills and other strategic peaks in the Batalik, Pakistan had not much to gain by pressing on with the offensive. Over the years, a number of clashes have marked the Siachen Glacier region where the Line of Control is not clearly chalked out.
Wikipedia's Kashmir map now demarcates the Line of Control. The Northern Areas, also known as Gilgit-Baltistan, is the region under Pakistani occupation. Jammu and Kashmir, according to the map is the India - administered region of the state. Azad Kashmir together with Gilgit-Baltistan is referred to as Pakistan-occupied Kashmir by India and as Pakistan-administered Kashmir by the United Nations. Azad Kashmir was the region occupied by Pakistan in war of 1947. Aksai Chin, to the north-east of the state is the part of Jammu and Kashmir claimed by China. The Line of actual Control in the map demarcates the area administered by India.
The CIA Map of Pakistan includes all of Gilgit-Baltistan region in Pakistan's territory. Most of (what Pakistan call) Azad Kashmir is still retained in the Map of India. The map shows the 1972 Line of Control as the boundary separating the two countries. To the east of Kashmir, the CIA map designates Aksai Chin as territory claimed by India. The authenticity of this map has been disputed by many Indian agencies but has been endorsed by Pakistani groups.
Google Maps has designated the various regions without a clear international boundary demarcation and has not labeled the respective regions.
In their map of Pakistan, BBC, the international news agency has marked all of Jammu and Kashmir and has made a distinction between 'Pakistani controlled Kashmir' and 'Indian controlled Kashmir'. The map does not make references to the Aksai Chin region.
Lonely Planet, in its Map of India, marks out the border as per the official map of India but the Map of Pakistan shows parts of Pakistan administered Kashmir as Pakistani territory. The Map of India also demarcates Gilgit-Baltistan and Aksai Chin differently from the rest of the country.
In 1949, following the first India-Pakistan War the UN Ceasefire Line was accepted as the line of administrative control for defense purposes. In 1972 the Shimla Agreement was signed by India and Pakistan and the Line of Control was recognized as the "line of Conflict', not an international border, but one that protects the recognized position of both nations. The UN map of Pakistan clearly demarcates the LOC as per the Shimla Agreement and places a disclaimer that the international boundary as shown is not an endorsement by the UN. The map disclaimer also reads "The final status of Jammu and Kashmir has not yet been agreed upon by the parties". All neutral agencies follow the UN lead and map the Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir region as disputed territory. The United Nations' stand is not an official endorsement of the territorial authority by either nation, nor does the international community accept any demarcation till the two nations have reached an agreement.
With the end of the first India-Pakistan War in 1949, Pakistan divided Kashmir into a number of regions. The two controversial regions among these are-
Gilgit - Baltistan Gilgit - Baltistan is the northernmost province of Kashmir which is currently occupied and administered by Pakistan. Commonly referred to as Federally Administered Northern Areas (FANA), the area was formed by uniting Gilgit, Baltistan, Hunza, and Nagar. The region is part of what India calls Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK). The mapping of this region poses a problem to most map-makers since both Pakistan and India consider Gilgit - Baltistan integral regions of their own respective territories.
Despite having occupied the Gilgit - Baltistan region, Pakistan had not officially assigned the region the status of a province due to the country's commitment to the United Nations Resolution 48. The reluctance of the Government of Pakistan to establish constitutional authority caused much dissatisfaction among the inhabitants of the region.
In April 2008 an international conference was held in Brussels at the European Parliament. The conference was overseen by the International Kashmir Alliance. Most members of the European Conference urged Pakistan to establish regulated administration in the region and to oversee the formation of a judiciary to deal with the human-rights violation concerns in the area. Subsequently in 2009, Pakistan implemented autonomous rule in the province. Pakistan's President Zardari signed the Gilgit-Balistan Empowerment and Self Governance order on August 29.2009. Though the constitution of Pakistan does not yet officially recognize Gilgit-Baltistan as a province, the region has been provided a status comparable with other provinces. A Legislative Assembly is elected by the people and administration is overseen by the Chief Minister.
Currently Gilgit - Baltistan is a self-governing region administered through a representative government. The judiciary of the province is independent. Currently the office bearers of the Government of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan, are -
|Pir Karam Ali Shah
|Syed Mehdi Shah
|Saif Ullah Chattha
|Inspector General of Police