Timeline of the Kashmir conflict
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The following is a timeline of the Kashmir conflict.
1846-1947: Kashmir before 1947
- 1846: Jammu and Kashmir(J&K) State is created for the first time with the signing on 16 March of the Second Treaty of Amritsar between the British East India company and Raja Gulab Singh of Jammu. It is an addendum to the Treaty of Lahore signed one week earlier on 9 March 1846 which gives the terms of surrender of the Sikh Durbar at Lahore to the British. The Sikhs cannot pay part of the demand made by the British; Gulab Singh steps in on their behalf to pay Rs. 7,500,000, and in return receives Kashmir Valley, part of the Sikh territories, to add to Jammu and Ladakh already under his rule. Gulab Singh accepts overall British sovereignty. Kashmir Valley is a Muslim majority region speaking the Kashmiri language and a distinct culture called Kashmiriyat.
- 1857: The War of independence, The Subcontinent fractured into hundreds of states.
- 1931: The movement against the repressive Maharaja Hari Singh begins. It is brutally suppressed by the State forces. Hari Singh is part of a Hindu Dogra dynasty, ruling over a majority Muslim State. The predominantly Muslim population was kept poor, illiterate and was not adequately represented in the State's services. The Glancy Commission appointed by the Maharaja publishes a report in April 1932, confirming the existence of the grievances of the State's subjects and suggests recommendations providing for adequate representation of Muslims in the State's services; Maharaja accepts these recommendations but delays implementation, leading to another agitation in 1934. Maharaja grants a Constitution providing a Legislative Assembly for the people, but the Assembly turns out to be powerless. The 1931 protest led to the Quit Kashmir movement against the Maharajah in 1946 by the Kashmir leader Sheikh Abdullah, and eventually to the Azad Kashmir movement which gained momentum a year later.
- 23 March 1940: The Lahore Resolution is proposed by MA Jinnah and seconded by Sikandar Hyat Khan and Fazlul Haq. Referring to British India, it states "That geographically contiguous units are demarcated into regions which should be so constituted, with such territorial readjustments as may be necessary, that the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority, as in the North-Western and Eastern zones of India should be grouped to constitute Independent States in which the constituent units shall be autonomous and sovereign". There is no mention of "Pakistan", an acronym invented by Chaudhury Rehmat Ali in England, but the Lahore Resolution later becomes known as the Pakistan Resolution.
- 26 July 1946: Quit Kashmir movement gains momentum. The Muslim Conference adopts the Azad Kashmir Resolution on 26 July 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.
1947: Kashmir Unrest and Accession
- Spring: An internal revolt begins in the Poonch region against oppressive taxation by the Maharaja. In August, Maharaja's forces fire upon demonstrations in favour of Kashmir joining Pakistan, burn whole villages and massacre innocent people. The Poonch rebels declare an independent government of Azad Kashmir in Rawalpindi on 3 October, later moved to Palandri on 24 October.
- 14/15 August: Independence of the British India into India and Pakistan. Kashmir signs Standstill Agreement with Pakistan. Rulers of Princely States are encouraged to accede their States to either Dominion - India or Pakistan, taking into account factors such as geographical contiguity and the wishes of their people. The Maharaja of Kashmir delays his decision in an effort to remain independent.
- 22 October: Pakistan precipitates the first Indo-Pakistani War (1947–48) a few weeks after independence by launching tribal lashkar (militia) from [Waziristan] in an effort to wrest Kashmir from India. Thousands of Pashtuns from Pakistan's North West Frontier Province, recruited covertly by Pakistani Army, invade Kashmir, along with the Poonch rebels, allegedly incensed by the atrocities against fellow Muslims in Poonch and Jammu. The tribesmen engage in looting and killing along the way. Maharaja of Kashmir asks India for help while the tribals halt in [Baramulla] to loot and plunder.
- 26 October: The Maharaja of the State of Jammu and Kashmir signs the Instrument of Accession (IOA), acceding the 75% majority Muslim region to the Indian Union. India accepts the accession, regarding it provisional until such time as the will of the people can be ascertained by a plebiscite, since Kashmir was recognised as a disputed territory.
- 27 October: The Indian army enters the state to repel the invaders. Sheikh Abdullah endorses the accession as ad-hoc which would be ultimately decided by a plebiscite and is appointed head of the emergency administration.
- 1947/1948: Indo-Pakistani War of 1947: Pakistan disputes that the accession is illegal and the first war over Kashmir breaks out.
1948-1957: Plebiscite Conundrum
- 1948: India takes the Kashmir problem to the United Nations (UN) Security Council on 1 January.
- 1949: On 1 January, a ceasefire between Indian and Pakistani forces leaves India in control of most of the valley, as well as Jammu and Ladakh, while Pakistan gains control of part of Kashmir including what is now Azad Kashmir and Gilgit–Baltistan. Pakistan claimed it is merely supporting an indigenous rebellion in Azad Kashmir and Northern Territories against repression.
- 1949: On 5 January 1949, UNCIP (United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan) resolution states that the question of the accession of the State of Jammu and Kashmir to India or Pakistan will be decided through a free and impartial plebiscite. As per the 1948 and 1949 UNCIP Resolutions, both countries accept the principle, that Pakistan secures the withdrawal of Pakistani intruders followed by withdrawal of Pakistani and Indian forces, as a basis for the formulation of a Truce agreement whose details are to be arrived in future, followed by a plebiscite; However, both countries fail to arrive at a Truce agreement due to differences in interpretation of the procedure for and extent of demilitarisation one of them being whether the Azad Kashmiri army is to be disbanded during the truce stage or the plebiscite stage.
- 1949: On 17 October, the Indian Constituent Assembly adopts Article 370 of the Constitution, ensuring a special status and internal autonomy for Jammu and Kashmir, with Indian jurisdiction in Kashmir limited to the three areas agreed in the IOA, namely, defence, foreign affairs and communications.
- 1951: First post-independence elections. The UN passes a resolution to the effect that such elections do not substitute a plebiscite, because a plebiscite offers the option of choosing between India and Pakistan. Sheikh Abdullah wins, mostly unopposed. There are widespread charges of election rigging which continue to plague most of the subsequent elections.
- 1947-1952: Sheikh Abdullah drifts from a position of endorsing accession to India in 1947 to insisting on the self-determination of Kashmiris in 1952. In July 1952, he signs Delhi Agreement with the Central government on Centre-State relationships, providing for autonomy of the State within India and of regions within the State;
- 1953-1954: In 1953, the governments of India and Pakistan agree to appoint a Plebiscite Administrator by the end of April 1954. Abdullah procrastinates in confirming the accession of Kashmir to India. In August 1953, Abdullah is dismissed and arrested. Bakshi Ghulam Mohammed is installed in power, who then gets the accession formally ratified in 1954. Pakistan and US sign a Mutual Defence Assistance Agreement in May 1954. Indian Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru states that he is concerned about the cold-war alignments and that such an alliance affects the Kashmir issue.
- 1956-1957: On 30 October 1956, the state Constituent Assembly adopts a constitution for the state declaring it an integral part of the Indian Union. On 24 January 1957, UN passes another resolution stating that such actions would not constitute a final disposition of the State. India's Home Minister, Pandit Govind Ballabh Pant, during his visit to Srinagar, declares that the State of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and there can be no question of a plebiscite to determine its status afresh. India would resist plebiscite efforts from then on. Kashmiri activists continue to insist on the promised self-determination.
1963 - 1987: Rise of Kashmiri Nationalism
- 1963-1964: On 27 December, mass upsurge occurs in Kashmir Valley when the holy relic is found missing from the Hazratbal Shrine; the lost relic is recovered on 4 January 1964. Protest demonstrations occur in Kashmir Valley and Pakistan held parts of the State in December against Articles 356 and 357 of the Indian Constitution being extended to the state, by virtue of which the Center can assume the government of the State and exercise its legislative powers. The special status accorded to the State under Article 370, continues to get eroded over years
- 1965: Indo-Pakistani War of 1965: Pakistan takes advantage of the discontent in the Valley and sends in a few thousand armed Pakistani infiltrators across the cease-fire line in August in Operation Gibraltar, and incidents of violence increase in Kashmir Valley; A full Indo-Pakistani war breaks out which ends in a ceasefire on 23 September.
- 1966: In January, Tashkent Declaration is signed by both countries agreeing to revert to pre-1965 position, under Russian mediation. Pakistan supported guerrilla groups in Kashmir increase their activities after the ceasefire. Kashmiri nationalists Amanullah Khan and Maqbool Bhat form another Plebiscite Front with an armed wing called the Jammu and Kashmir National Liberation Front(NLF) in Azad Kashmir, with the objective of freeing Kashmir from Indian occupation.
- 1972: Republic of India and Pakistan agree to respect the cease-fire as Line of Control. India and Pakistan sign the Simla Agreement in July, which has a clause that the final settlement of Kashmir will be decided bilaterally in the future and that both the sides shall respect the LOC.
- 1976: Maqbool Bhat is arrested on his return to the Valley. Amanullah Khan moves to England and NLF becomes Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front(JKLF).
- 1979: The USSR invades Afghanistan. The US and Pakistan are involved in training, recruiting, arming, and unleashing the Mujahedin on Afghanistan. The mujahedin so recruited would take on their own agenda of establishing Islamic rule in Kashmir from the late 1980s.
- 13 April 1984: The Indian Army takes Siachen Glacier region of Kashmir. Maqbool Bhat is executed.
1987 - Now: Kashmir Insurgency
- 1987: Farooq Abdullah wins the elections. The Muslim United Front (MUF) accuses that the elections have been rigged. The insurgency in the valley increases in momentum from this point on, given the consistent failure of democracy and limited employment opportunities. The MUF candidate Mohammad Yousuf Shah is not only cheated in the rigged elections, but also imprisoned and he would later become Syed Salahuddin, chief of militant outfit Hizb-ul-Mujahedin. His election aides called the HAJY group - Abdul Hamid Shaikh, Ashfaq Majid Wani, Javed Ahmed Mir and Mohammed Yasin Malik - would join the JKLF. Amanullah Khan takes refuge in Pakistan, after being deported from England and begins to direct operations across the LoC. Young disaffected Kashmiris in the Valley such as the HAJY group are recruited by JKLF.
- 1988: Protests begin in the Valley along with anti-India demonstrations, followed by police firing and curfew.
- 1989: End of Soviet occupation of Afghanistan releases a great deal of militant energy and weapons to Kashmir. Pakistan provides arms and training to both indigenous and foreign militants in Kashmir, thus adding fuel to the smouldering fire of discontent in the valley.
- 1990: In January, Jagmohan is appointed as the Governor. Farooq Abdullah resigns. On 20 January, an estimated 100 people are killed when a large group of unarmed protesters are fired upon by the Indian troops at the Gawakadal bridge. With this incident, it becomes an insurgency of the entire population. On 1 March, an estimated one million take to the streets and more than forty people are killed in police firing. On 13 February, Lassa Kaul, director of Srinagar Doordarshan, is killed by the militants for implementing pro-Indian media policy. Though the JKLF tries to explain that the killings of Pandits were not communal, the murders cause a scare among the minority Hindu community. The rise of new militant groups, some warnings in anonymous posters and some unexplained killings of innocent members of the community contribute to an atmosphere of insecurity for the Kashmiri Pandits. Joint reconciliation efforts by members from both Muslim and Pandit communities are actively discouraged by Jagmohan. Most of the estimated 162,500 Hindus in the Valley, including the entire Kashmiri Pandit community, flee the Valley in March.
- 1990 and after: An officially estimated 10,000 desperate Kashmiri youth cross-over to Pakistan for training and procurement of arms. Indigenous and foreign militant groups besides pro-India renegade militants proliferate through the 1990s with an estimated half a million Indian security forces deployed in the Kashmir Valley since the 1990s with increasing violence and human right violations by all sides leading to tens of thousands of civilian casualties.
- 1999: Kargil War
- 14–16 July 2001: General Pervez Musharraf and Atal Behari Vajpayee meet for peace talks.
- October 2001: Kashmiri assembly in Srinagar attacked (38 people dead).
- December 2001: Attack on Indian parliament in New Delhi.
- 2 May 2003: India and Pakistan restore diplomatic ties.
- 11 July 2003: Delhi-Lahore bus service resumes
- 24 September 2004: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Musharraf meet in New York during UN General Assembly.
- July 2006 : Second round of Indo-Pakistani peace talks.
- June 2010: Following the killing of a young Kashmiri Tufail Ahmad Mattoo, protest demonstrations continue in Kashmir for months.
- June 2011: September - Indian forces kill three Pakistani soldiers in firing across the Line of Control. India accuses Pakistan of opening fire first.
- June 2012: August - The Chief Minister of Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, Omar Abdullah, says that the security situation there is not yet conducive to the revoking of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in the state.
- June 2012: September - Indian President Pranab Mukherjee visits Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir within two months of taking up office. Despite the threat of protests from separatists, see Insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir, the visit passes off without serious incident.
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- Prem Nath Bazaz, Struggle for Freedom in Kashmir , New Delhi 1954, pp.140-166
- Sikandar Hyat Khan on 11 March 1941 tells the Punjab Legislative Assembly: “No Pakistan scheme was passed at Lahore… As for Pakistan schemes, Maulana Jamal-ud-Din’s is the earliest…Then there is the scheme which is attributed to the late Allama Iqbal of revered memory. He, however, never formulated any definite scheme but his writings and poems have given some people ground to think that Allama Iqbal desired the establishment of some sort of Pakistan. But it is not difficult to explode this theory and to prove conclusively that his conception of Islamic solidarity and universal brotherhood is not in conflict with Indian patriotism and is in fact quite different from the ideology now sought to be attributed to him by some enthusiasts… Then there is Chaudhuri Rahmat Ali’s scheme (*laughter*)…it was widely circulated in this country and… it was also given wide publicity at the time in a section of the British press. But there is another scheme…it was published in one of the British journals, I think Round Table, and was conceived by an Englishman…..the word Pakistan was not used at the League meeting and this term was not applied to (the League’s Lahore) resolution by anybody until the Hindu press had a brain-wave and dubbed it Pakistan…. The ignorant masses have now adopted the slogan provided by the short-sighted bigotry of the Hindu and Sikh press…they overlooked the fact that the word Pakistan might have an appeal – a strong appeal – for the Muslim masses. It is a catching phrase and it has caught popular imagination and has thus made confusion worse confounded…. So far as we in the Punjab are concerned, let me assure you that we will not countenance or accept any proposal that does not secure freedom for all (*cheers*). We do not desire that Muslims should domineer here, just as we do not want the Hindus to domineer where Muslims are in a minority. Now would we allow anybody or section to thwart us because Muslims happen to be in a majority in this province. We do not ask for freedom that there may be a Muslim Raj here and Hindu Raj elsewhere. If that is what Pakistan means I will have nothing to do with it. If Pakistan means unalloyed Muslim Raj in the Punjab then I will have nothing to do with it (*hear, hear*)…. If you want real freedom for the Punjab, that is to say a Punjab in which every community will have its due share in the economic and administrative fields as partners in a common concern, then that Punjab will not be Pakistan but just Punjab, land of the five rivers; Punjab is Punjab and will always remain Punjab whatever anybody may say (*cheers*). This, then, briefly is the future which I visualize for my province and for my country under any new constitution. Intervention (Malik Barkat Ali): The Lahore resolution says the same thing. Premier: Exactly; then why misinterpret it and try to mislead the masses?…” The resolution demands the establishment of an independent state comprising all regions in which Muslims are the majority. The letter “K” in the word "Pakistan" represents Kashmir.
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- Pakistan Covert Support
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