Sunday, March 14, 2010

History of Kashmir (A Chronology of Events)

Lets have a look at the most important events regarding Kashmir

pre 13 th Century Budhist: Hindu Kashmir
13th- 19th century: Muslim Kashmir
1819 -46: Kashmir ruled ,abused oppressed as a colony by the Sikh Kingdom of Punjab
1846: Kashmir is sold:
The British colonial rulers of India sold Kashmir, including its population, through a deed of sale called the Treaty of Amritsar, to a Hindu warlord who had no roots in the area. This warlord began calling himself the Maharajah of Jammu and Kashmir. His was a particularly brutal regime, memories of which persist to this day. Several mosques were occupied and shut down by his forces. The slaughtering of a cow was declared a crime punishable by death.

1925 to 1947: discrimination against the Muslim majority:
Maharajah Hari Singh continued this policy of discrimination against the Kashmiri population, 94 percent of which is Muslim.

1931: Kashmir's first organized protest:
The people of Kashmir hold their first organized protest against Maharajah Hari Singh's cruelty. The 1931 protest led to the "Quit Kashmir" campaign against the Maharajah in 1946, and eventually to the Azad Kashmir movement which gained momentum a year later.

March 23, 1940: Pakistan Resolution passed:
The Pakistan Resolution is passed at Iqbal Park, Lahore. The resolution demands the establishment of an independent state comprised of all regions in which Muslims are the majority. The letter "K" in the word "Pakistan" represents Kashmir.

July 26, 1946: Azad Kashmir comes into being:
The Muslim Conference adopts the Azad Kashmir Resolution on July 26 1946 calling for the end of autocratic rule in the region. The resolution also claims for Kashmiris the right to elect their own constituent assembly....

June 3, 1947: British accept Pakistan plan:
The British government announces its intention of accepting the demand of Muslims for the independent state of Pakistan. The new nation would be comprised of areas where Muslims are in the majority.. All political parties, including the Muslim League (representing Muslims) and the Congress Party (representing Hindus), accept the plan...

August 1947: Kashmiri resistance encounters Maharajah's troops:
The first armed encounter between the Maharajah's troops and insurgent forces occurred in August 1947... At this time, Britain was liquidating its empire in the subcontinent.

August 14, 1947: Pakistan created:
State of Pakistan comes into being..

October 25, 1947: Maharajah flees to Jammu:
Faced with a popular revolt against his rule, the Maharajah flees to Jammu on 25th October 1947. Once in Jammu, the Maharajah receives a commitment of military assistance from the Indian government in exchange for his signing the "Instrument of Accession" document...

Lord Mountbatten conditionally accepts the document on behalf of the British Crown and proceeds to outline the conditions for official acceptance in a letter dated 27th October 1947...

"In consistence with their policy that in the case of any (native) state where the issue of accession has been subject of dispute, the question of accession should be decided in accordance with the wishes of the people of the state, it is my government's wish that as soon as law and order have been restored in Kashmir and her soil cleared of the invaders the question of state's accession should be settled by a reference to the people."

November 1, 1947: Kashmir's accession to India is not "bona fide": Jinnah:
Governor General of Pakistan, Mohammad Ali Jinnah meets Governor General of India, Mountbatten. Jinnah tells Mountbatten that Kashmir's accession to India "was not a bona fide one since it rested on fraud and violence."

November 2, 1947: Kashmiris have a right to determine future: Nehru:
Indian Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, in a speech aired on All-India Radio, reaffirmed the Indian Government's commitment to the right of the Kashmiri people to determine their own future through a plebiscite:

"We have declared that the fate of Kashmir is ultimately to be decided by the people. That pledge we have given, and the Maharajah has supported it, not only to the people of Jammu and Kashmir, but also to the world. We will not and cannot back out of it. We are prepared when peace and law have been established to have a referendum held under international auspices like the United Nations. We want it to be a fair and just reference to the people and we shall accept their verdict."

The Government of India accepted the "Instrument of accession" conditionally, promising the people of the state and the world at large that "accession" would be final only after the wishes of the people of the state were ascertained upon return of normalcy in the state...

Following this, India moved her forces into Srinagar and a drawn-out fight between Indian forces and the forces of liberation ensued. The forces of Azad Kashmir successfully resisted India's armed intervention and liberated one-third of the State.

January 1948: India brings Kashmir issue to UN Security Council:
Realizing it could not quell the resistance, India brought the issue to the United Nations Security Council in January 1948. The rebel forces had been joined by volunteers from Pakistan and India charged Pakistan with having sent "armed raiders" into the state. It demanded that Pakistan be declared an aggressor in Kashmir. Furthermore, India demanded that Pakistan stop aiding freedom fighters, and allowing the transit of tribesmen into the state.

After acceptance of these demands, coupled with the assurance that all "raiders" were withdrawn, India would allow a plebiscite to be held under impartial auspices to decide Kashmir's future status.

In reply, Pakistan charged India with maneuvering the Maharajah's accession through "fraud and violence" and colluding with a "discredited" ruler in the repression of his people. Pakistan's counter complaint was also coupled with the proposal of a plebiscite under the supervision and control of the United Nations to settle the dispute.

April 21, 1948: UN resolution envisages cease-fire, withdrawals:
The Security Council discussed the question from January until April of 1948. It came to the conclusion that it would be impossible to determine responsibility for the fighting and futile to blame either side. Since both parties desired that the question of accession should be decided through an impartial plebiscite, the council developed proposals based on the common ground between them...

These were embodied in the resolution of 21st April 1948, envisaging a cease-fire, the withdrawal of all outside forces from the state, and a plebiscite under the control of an administrator who would be nominated by the Secretary General. For negotiating the details of the plan, the council constituted a five-member commission known as "United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan," (UNCIP) to implement the resolution.

After the cease-fire, India began efforts to drag the issue down, and under various pretexts tried to stop the UN resolution from being implemented. To this day, India pursues the same plan, and the resolution of 1948 has yet to be realized.

1947 - 48: India, Pakistan at war over Kashmir:
India and Pakistan went to war over Kashmir from 1947-48. All early UN Security Council Resolutions admonished both countries, demanded an immediate cease-fire, which would be followed by a UN-directed plebiscite...

January 24, 1957: UN Security Council reaffirms 1948 resolution:
The Security Council, reaffirming its previous resolution, further declared that any action taken by the Constituent Assembly formed in Kashmir "would not constitute disposition of the state in accordance with the above principles."

February 5, 1964: India fails to keep her promise:
India reneges from her pledge. The Indian representative tells the Security Council, "I wish to make it clear on behalf of my government that in no circumstances we can agree to the holding of a plebiscite in Kashmir." Defense Minister, Kirshnan Menon, gives the reason: "Kashmir would vote to join Pakistan and no Indian Government responsible for agreeing to plebiscite would survive".

March 1965: India claims Kashmir:
The Indian Parliament passes a bill declaring Kashmir a province of India.

August 1965: Pakistan accused of sending infiltrators:
India accuses Pakistan of sending infiltrators to Kashmir. Indian forces cross the cease-fire line in Kashmir.

September 6, 1965: India launches attack against Pakistan:
India attacks Pakistan across the international border and tries to capture Pakistan's second largest city, Lahore.

September 23, 1965: calls for an end to hostilities:
The United Nations Security Council arranges a cease-fire.

January 10, 1966: Tashkent agreement signed:
The Soviet Union arranges talks between Pakistan and India. The Tashkent Agreement is signed through the mediating efforts of the Soviet Prime Minister Alexi Kosygin. The agreement reaffirms that the dispute should be settled by peaceful means. The armies are to withdraw to their original positions.

November 1971: attack against East Pakistan:
Indian Army attacks East Pakistan...

December 16, 1971-Bangladesh is established:
Pakistan surrenders East Pakistan to India. India declares East Pakistan as "Bangladesh."

July 2 1972: Simla Agreement signed:
The Simla Agreement between Pakistan and India is signed. Both agree to make efforts toward establishing durable peace by seeking a solution to existing problems, including "a final settlement of Jammu and Kashmir."

1987: a new Kashmiri resistance begins:
The current uprising of the people of Kashmir starts out as a protest against inefficiency, corruption, religious discrimination and Hindu communalism.

January 19, 1990: Kashmir brought under Indian control:
The Indian government brings Kashmir under its direct control. The state legislature is suspended, the government is removed and the former Director General of the Indian Secret Service, Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), Mr. Jagmohan is appointed governor.

January 20, 1990: hostilities increase:
There are large-scale demonstrations and thirty people are killed by Indian security forces. A curfew is imposed in most cities.

February 25, 1990: support from civil servants:
Government employees join demonstrations.

February 27, 1990: United Nations not allowed in Kashmir:
India refuses to allow any United Nations official to visit Kashmir.

March 2, 1990: Kashmiris shot during Srinagar march:
Forty people are killed when police open fire at a march of more than one million Kashmiris through the streets of Srinagar. Police are ordered to shoot at sight.

March 28, 1990: Refugees flee to Pakistan:
Refugees start pouring into Pakistan from occupied Kashmir.

April 10, 1990: India threatens war:
Prime Minister Singh of India threatens war and says, "we are not going to stop till we have achieved our objectives."

April 14, 1990: military reinforcements in Kashmir:
Indian authorities send military reinforcements to Kashmir.

July 1990: Jammu and Kashmir Disputed Areas Act passed:
Under this act, India's security forces personnel have extraordinary powers over anyone who is suspected of disturbing the peace or harboring militants or arms.

November 1992: Amnesty International not allowed into Kashmir:
Amnesty International is barred from going to the Kashmir valley.

January 1 - 3, 1994: another failure over Kashmir:
Pakistan and India's foreign secretaries fail to narrow differences on Kashmir. Pakistan rules out more talks unless India ends alleged human rights violations in Kashmir.

January 9, 1995: India declares occupied Kashmir "backward":
India declares occupied Jammu and Kashmir territory a "backward" state. It offers tax breaks and concessions to businesses in an attempt to get rid of the Kashmiri freedom movement.

January 14, 1995: Indian intelligence seeks to divide resistance movement:
Unable to crush the Kashmiri struggle for freedom, Indian intelligence agencies increase efforts to exploit sectarian differences among the Mujahideen (the Kashmiri resistance movement).

January 20, 1995: India doesn't want third-party involvement in Kashmir:
India excludes the possibility of third-party involvement in the resolution of the Kashmir dispute. But it says it is prepared to hear from Pakistan directly about how much "elbow room" is necessary to commence talks between the two countries.

May 9, 1995: fire rages through Chrar Sharif:
Hundreds of homes are destroyed on Eid when a fire rages through Chrar Sharif. The Mujahedeen were under siege by the Indian army for two months in this town.

May 12, 1995: anti-India protest in the wake of Chrar Sharif fire:
Anti-India protests overwhelm the Kashmir Valley in the wake of the destruction of the 650-year-old mausoleum of Sheikh Nooruddin Wali (R.A.) and a mosque next to it. India accuses Pakistan of being behind the destruction of the shrine and issues a strong warning against interference in its internal affairs.

May 18, 1995: APHC rejects offer for talks on Kashmir with India:
The APHC rejects an offer for talks on Kashmir by New Delhi. The organization says it will not enter into any dialogue with New Delhi unless India admits Kashmir is a disputed territory.

July 20, 1995: journalists' kidnapping in Kashmir a sign of media clampdown:
The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) says the kidnapping of four journalists in Kashmir is only one current example of a complete clampdown on any independent journalism in the area. In its report, On the Razor's Edge, the CPJ also notes the Indian government harasses and intimidates reporters.

November 11, 1995: India launches anti-Pakistan propaganda campaign:
Upset about the media and human rights reports against its campaign of suppression and repression in occupied Jammu and Kashmir, India launches a multi-million dollar propaganda campaign against Pakistan. Pakistan is accused of aiding and abetting "terrorism" in Kashmir using money from the drug trade.

December 23, 1995: APHC seeks intervention of UN, OIC and others:
The APHC seeks the intervention of the United Nations, Organization of the Islamic Conference, Amnesty International and other worldwide human rights bodies to help stop India's destruction of occupied Kashmir.

February 16, 1996: APHC calls for tripartite talks:
Kashmiri groups ask India and Pakistan to begin tripartite talks to end the six-year-old rebellion against New Delhi. The groups say most Muslims in the area support the proposal.

May 5, 1996: Indian Prime Minister makes his first visit to Kashmir:
Indian Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao makes his first visit to Kashmir. He says upcoming general elections in the region could not be foiled by what he described as Pakistani moves toward destabilization.

May 13, 1996: government employees boycott Indian elections:
Over 1.5 million government workers assigned to election duty by Indian authorities strike for 18 days to boycott the electoral process at the call of Jammu and Kashmir Government Employees Confederation.

June 8, 1996: APHC rejects greater autonomy:
The APHC rejects the Indian government's offer of greater autonomy for occupied Kashmir. The organization says the problem cannot be resolved by remaining in India.

August 2, 1996: Gowda tries to sweeten the deal for Kashmir:
HD Deve Gowda, Prime Minister of India, reveals a package of economic benefits for Kashmir just before state elections scheduled for the following month. Gowda announces outstanding loans of up to Rs.50, 000 will be waived, Kashmir will receive special assistance of Rs.3.52 billion for developing infrastructure in the state.

September 14, 1996: APHC leadership arrested:
Prior to elections for the state assembly, Indian troops arrest the APHC's entire leadership.

September 16, 1996: sham elections held in Kashmir:
Widespread coercion of voters by the Indian forces takes place during the second phase of the state assembly elections in occupied Kashmir.

A BBC correspondent, who saw many constituencies, said in some places the Indian army broadcast messages from mosques telling people to come out to vote. In other places, people complained they were coerced into voting.

Journalists also reported seeing buses and trucks commanded by the region's paramilitary forces bringing out reluctant voters.

March 3, 1997: Mujahedeen reject carving up Kashmir:
Kashmiri Mujahedeen reject the carving up of Kashmir between India and Pakistan.
"The proposal for any kind of division of the state can never be accepted by the people of Jammu and Kashmir, and we will always oppose it," says Shabir Ahmed Shah, a Kashmiri leader.

March 28, 1997: India and Pakistan begin negotiations:
Pakistan's Foreign Secretary, Shamshad Ahmed, and India's Foreign Secretary, Salman Haider, meet at the negotiating table for the first time in three years. The issue of Kashmir is high on the agenda.

March 31, 1997: talks look hopeful:
Pakistan and India end four days of talks aimed at reducing tension and agree to meet again in Islamabad.

April 22, 1997: change in government elicits cautious reaction in Kashmir:
The people in Indian-occupied Jammu & Kashmir react cautiously over the change of government in India.

May 12, 1997: India and Pakistan meet again:
Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Indian Prime Minister Inder Kumar Gujral agree to establish joint working groups to resolve all outstanding issues between the two countries since 1947.

June 22, 1997: India and Pakistan reach an agreement:
Pakistan and India agree to establish a mechanism for enduring dialogue on issues between the two countries.

June 23, 1997: Kashmir is one of eight major issues:
Pakistan and India pinpoint eight issues to be discussed in future talks including the issue of Jammu and Kashmir. However, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif says the country maintains its stand on Kashmir.

June 25, 1997: India says Kashmir is not a "disputed territory":
At the conclusion of a second round of talks in Islamabad, India rejects Pakistan's assertion that Jammu and Kashmir is a "disputed territory."

Indian Foreign Minister, Salman Haider, says India will not discuss the status of Indian-held Kashmir with Pakistan. He says if anything is to be discussed it will be "Pakistan-held" Kashmir and northern areas illegally annexed by Pakistan.

July 26, 1997: Indian Prime Minister Gujral warns army:
At the beginning of a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir, India's Prime Minister, Inder Kumar Gujral, warns Indian soldiers in occupied Kashmir against committing human rights abuses. He offers to hold unconditional talks with Kashmiri Mujahedeen groups to end seven long years of violence in the region.

July 27, 1997: Gujral does a turnaround:
In a turnaround from the previous day's statement, Indian Prime Minister, Inder Kumar Gujral, says that Kashmir's freedom fighters would have to surrender their arms before peace talks with the government could begin.

August 10, 1997: increase in reports of harassment of Kashmiri women:
Reports are coming through of Kashmiri women and girls being arrested, tortured and raped. The chairperson of the Indian Commission for Women, Dr. Mohini Giri, said Kashmiri women were being treated in the most inhumane way all over Kashmir.

September 27, 1997: India renews armed forces laws:
India directs the state government in Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir to renew two special laws. These laws give a free hand and immunity to the armed forces. The Special Powers Act and the Disturbed Areas Act originally came into effect in 1990 and were to expire in early October.

October 12, 1997: rioting after Jami Mosque desecration:
Angry anti-India demonstrations are sparked by the desecration of the historic Jamia Mosque in Srinagar by Indian troops. They besieged the mosque, entered it wearing their boots and carried out an extensive search for three hours.

February 8, 1998: fear over "Kashaf commandos":
The APHC's executive committee expresses grave concern over the formation of a secret force, the "Kashaf commandos," by Indian forces. The newly formed force creates dissension among the Kashmiri Mujahideen and fans the flames of communal violence by killing members of the Hindu minority in Muslim majority areas and then blaming the Mujahideen for the actions.

March 19, 1998: Governor confesses India's human rights violations:
The governor of Jammu and Kashmir, KV Krishna Rao, confesses that Indian forces were responsible for massacre of Kashmiri people on several occasions and that he felt deeply for these human rights violations.

April 2, 1998: Pakistan accused of fomenting war in Kashmir:
India's new Hindu nationalist government accuses Pakistan of helping Kashmiri separatists and warns it is ready to respond to the "proxy war" in Kashmir.

April 10, 1998: Pakistan and India should "go the extra mile":
United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Bill Richardson, urges Pakistan and India to "go the extra mile" and hold a dialogue on Kashmir and other issues in order to stop the nuclear missile race in the area.

April 22, 1998: appointment of new Kashmir governor:
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government appoints Girsh Saxena as Governor of Jammu and Kashmir. The appointment is resented by human rights activists and intellectuals who demanded a senior politician close to Kashmir be sent as governor.

May 24, 1998: major offensive against Mujahedeen:
Kashmir's Chief Minister, Farooq Abdullah, says India will launch a major offensive against "foreign" fighters in the northern state of Kashmir and that the Indian government is ready to "flush" the Mujahedeen out of the state.

May 26, 1998: Indian troops and Mujahedeen clash:
In Indian-occupied Kashmir, Mujahedeen clash with Indian troops in the Keri, Rajauri area.

May 30, 1998: India responds to nuclear testing:
In response to Pakistan's nuclear testing, India warns Islamabad about Kashmir. Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee says while India was ready to talk to Pakistan it should harbour no ambitions towards capturing Kashmir. Pakistan says it is prepared to have a non-aggression pact with India on the basis of just settlement of the Kashmir issue.

June 6, 1998: Pakistan proposes Kashmir resolution and a halt to nuclear arms buildup:
Pakistani Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, proposes talks between Islamabad and New Delhi to stop the South Asian arms race and urges the international community to help resolve the issue of Kashmir.

August 1, 1998: "massive" joint operations against Mujahedeen:
India's Home Minister, L.K. Advani, says more forces are being sent to Indian-occupied Kashmir for "massive" joint operations. He said this is due to the fact that the Kashmiri Mujahedeen have intensified their efforts in the valley for the last many months.

August 19, 1998: Vajpayee wants new talks:
India's Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee, offers talks with Pakistan. However, he says the dialogue has to be comprehensive and not just focused on Kashmir.

August 26, 1998: India bans Britannica CD-ROM:
India bans importation of Encyclopedia Britannica on CD-ROM because it shows Kashmir as a disputed territory.

August 29, 1998: Nelson Mandela's involvement in Kashmir issue urged:
The Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) calls on South African President, Nelson Mandela, to persuade Pakistani and Indian teams attending a Non-Aligned Movement meeting to solve the Kashmir issue in a peaceful, democratic and permanent manner.

September 2,1998: NAM calls for resolution of Kashmir dispute:
For the first time in history, the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) calls for a peaceful resolution of the dispute over Jammu and Kashmir. Nelson Mandela, who chaired the 12th NAM summit, says everyone should hope the issue of Jammu and Kashmir is solved through peaceful negotiations and everyone should be willing to help resolve the matter.

Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee says "third parties" should stay out of the Kashmir dispute.

September 23, 1998: Pakistan and India agree to resume Kashmir talks:
Pakistan and India agree to resume stalled dialogue on Kashmir and other security issues.

October 18, 1998: no agreement between India and Pakistan:
The first diplomatic talks between the two countries since nuclear testing was conducted by the two in May, end in Islamabad. There is no agreement on how to ease tensions in the area.

May 26, 1999: India launches air strikes against Mujahedeen in Kargil:
After three weeks of "intense skirmishes" between India and Pakistan, India launches air strikes to "flush out" Mujahedeen on its side of a Kashmir cease-fire line. India claims up to 680 "Afghan militants," backed by Pakistan, have invaded high ridges and another 400 are waiting to cross over to the Indian side of the Line of Control. Pakistan calls the air strikes "very, very serious" and puts its troops on high alert. India and Pakistan agree to hold talks over Kashmir in the first sign that the two sides might be trying to defuse escalating tensions.

June 1999: Kashmir peace hope flounders:
As India promises to continue ground and air strikes against infiltrators, a senior Indian minister warns there is little point in peace talks with Pakistan. But after some time, talks on Kashmir are confirmed. Pakistan and India fix a date for their first significant attempt to defuse the tension over Kashmir.

However, India continues its assault on suspected infiltrators holed up in the Himalayas with fresh air strikes, ahead of talks with Pakistan. India and Pakistan end their talks on the fierce fighting in Kashmir without agreement on how to halt the conflict. India presses ahead with its military offensive a day after US President Clinton asks Pakistan to persuade them to pull out.

July 1999: Clinton urges India-Pakistan talks:
India announces it has taken the key Tiger Hill peak following an all-out assault. Mujahedeen fighters are reported to be leaving the mountains of Indian-occupied Kashmir as both Pakistan and India claim victory in the two-month conflict. As fighting in the territory dies down, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif appeals for a permanent settlement of the Kashmir dispute.

February 2000: US President makes statement:
President Bill Clinton says he would be happy to mediate between India and Pakistan over the Kashmir conflict -- if asked.

March 2000: killings in mosque:
Indian troops in kashmir kill three separatists in a mosque near the border town of Handwara. In the same month, 36 Sikhs are massacred in the village of Chattisinghpora.

July 2000: India celebrates Kargil "victory":
India holds special ceremonies to mark the first anniversary of its "victory" in the Kargil conflict with Pakistan.

August 2000: more negotiations:
The Indian government and Mujahedeen commanders prepare for a round of peace talks.

November 2000: call for Muslim nations to cut ties with India:
A leading separatist, Syed Salahuddin, calls on Muslim nations to cut diplomatic and economic ties with India. At the same time, Kashmiri leaders call on India to recognize the territory as disputed and to hold talks with Pakistan and Kashmiri leaders.

June 2001: fresh talks:
A new round of talks are slated to begin between India and Pakistan on the issue of Kashmir.

July 2001: Agra Summit:
Indian Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee, and Pakistani President, Pervez Musharraf, meet in Agra, India for a summit on relations between the two nations.