A fuller accounting:
Why are we doing this?
As we begin our coverage of Kashmir, and especially as we delve into the history of this troubled region, we have repeatedly encountered the question - should we really be going down this road? Isn't Kashmir the irreconcilable issue? Is there really any room for informed debate among the audience, or is this simply too emotive an issue to bear covering? And most importantly, for any publication - will we be placing at risk the significant goodwill we have built among our readers over the years?

Read the complete editorial outlining India Together's thinking on this issue
Understanding Kashmir
A chronology of the conflict
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June 2002: Kashmir is bleeding. The Kashmir conflict continues to be unresolved after more than five decades, fuelling the conventional and nuclear arms race between India and Pakistan and bleeding their economy. Both countries have gone to war on three occasions over Kashmir and the possibility of war between the two countries has become frightening given their nuclear weapon capability.

In a series of upcoming pages on Kashmir, India Together will attempt to collate credible public domain information on the Indian state's policy and record in Jammu and Kashmir. It is hoped that this will inform and assist the Indian reader to critically analyze India's policies in Kashmir, with a view to appreciating various options that hold the promise of ending the bloodshed.

The introductory page lists a chronology of major events in the history of the Kashmir conflict. Subsequent sections will deal with the story of elections in Kashmir, the evidence regarding numerous allegations of human right violations against the Indian security forces and whether and why Kashmir might be a disputed territory, as well as various suggested solutions.

India Together is interested in compiling as accurate and complete a chronology as possible. If you dispute any of the material listed here, please email us your alternate version, along with documentary evidence, and we will certainly pass those on to our reviewers. Please write to editors@indiatogether.org with your thoughts and input.

Please also note that this is an evolving chronology. Often, because other authors submit rebuttals, or because readers point to alternative interpretations, we may make changes to these pages. Does this render the material available today inconsistent with earlier versions? Possibly, but we do not believe it detracts from the chronology itself. Instead, the wide availability of even partial chronologies encourages feedback, confirmation and rebuttals, thereby permitting the development of a more complete record of a complex history.

Chronology of Major Events

  • 1846: Jammu and Kashmir(J&K*) State is created under the Treaty of Amritsar between the East India company and Raja Gulab Singh of Jammu who buys Kashmir Valley from the East India Company for Rs.75,00,000 and adds it to Jammu and Ladakh already under his rule. Kashmir Valley is a Muslim majority region speaking the Kashmiri language and a composite cultural identity called 'kashmiriyat' transcending religious barriers; the people are hospitable and engage in Sufi tradition.
    Tavleen Singh, Kashmir: A Tragedy of Errors, New Delhi 1995, p.240

  • 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 not adequately represented in the State's services.
    Prem Nath Bazaz, Struggle for Freedom in Kashmir , New Delhi 1954, pp.140-160

  • 1932:Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah sets up the All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference to fight for Kashmiri freedom from the Maharaja's rule, which would eventually become the National Conference in 1939.

    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.
    Prem Nath Bazaz, Struggle for Freedom in Kashmir , New Delhi 1954, pp.162-6

  • 1946: National Conference launches Quit Kashmir movement demanding abrogation of the Treaty of Amritsar and restoration of sovereignty to the people of Kashmir. Abdullah is arrested.
  • 1947: On 15 August, the Indian subcontinent becomes independent. 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.

    In theory, rulers were allowed to accede their States to either Dominion, irrespective of the wishes of their people; but as a practical matter, they were encouraged to accede to the geographically contiguous Dominion, taking into account the wishes of their people and in cases where a dispute arose, it was decided to settle the question of accession by a plebiscite, a scheme proposed and accepted by India. Being a Muslim majority State and contiguous to Pakistan, Kashmir was expected to accede to Pakistan; since the Hindu Ruler acceded instead to India, a dispute arose in the case of Kashmir.

    In 1948, India imposed and won a plebiscite in the case of Junagadh, which had a Hindu majority ruled by a Muslim Ruler who acceded to Pakistan; However, in the case of Kashmir, the mirror image of Junagadh, India did not hold a plebiscite; Pakistan applied its own share of double standards by having divergent positions on Kashmir and Junagadh, insisting it get both.

  • In Spring, internal revolt begins in the Poonch region against oppressive taxation under the recently imposed direct rule by the Maharaja; Poonch was a predominantly Muslim area. Maharaja strengthens the Sikh and Hindu garrisons in the Muslim areas and orders the Muslims to deposit arms with the police. In August, Maharaja's forces fire upon demonstrations in favour of Kashmir joining Pakistan, killing innocent people. The people of Poonch evacuate their families, cross over to Pakistan and return with arms. In the last week of August, a condition of unrest and spasmodic violence turns into an organised rebellion resulting in killings of Hindus and Sikhs and atleast 60,000 refugees fleeing to Jammu by 13 September. The rebellion spreads to adjacent Mirpur and Muzaffarabad. The Poonch rebels declare an independent government of "Azad" Kashmir on 24 October.

  • In September, massacre of Muslims start in Jammu by armed bands of Hindus and Sikhs with active support from the State forces. Hundreds of thousands of Muslims flee Jammu. On 12 October, Pakistan sends telegram to Kashmir detailing the atrocities and demands an impartial inquiry; Kashmir does not deny the charges in the reply telegram and promises an inquiry which would never be carried out. There was no communal violence in the Kashmir Valley itself.

    Barring National Conference, other political parties including the Muslim Conference and the Chiefs of Gilgit region, advise the Maharaja against acceding to the Indian Union. While in prison, Sheikh Abdullah writes a letter to a friend in Jammu, which is published in the Congress press, in favour of accession of Kashmir to India. Abdullah is released from prison on 29 September, in response to pressure from India. After his release, he speaks in favour of Kashmir's freedom before accession. Throughout his career, he would thus continue to oscillate between a pro-India stance and demanding self-determination for Kashmiris. On 22 October, he explains the apprehension of the Kashmiri Muslims in joining India, given the massacre of muslims in Kapurthala and elsewhere in India. On 26 October, he demands transfer of power to the people within ten days.

  • On 22 October, thousands of Pathan tribesmen from Pakistan, recruited by the Poonch rebels, 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. The tribesmen and the Poonch rebels are unofficially supported by various individuals and high ranking officials in Pakistan including Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan and Chief Minister of North West Frontier Province. India accuses Pakistan of violating the Standstill Agreement with Kashmir by disrupting the supply links and of engaging in aggression by sending in the tribesmen. Pakistan refutes the charges.

  • 1947: The Maharaja of the State of Jammu and Kashmir signs the Instrument of Accession (IOA) on 26 October, acceding the 75% majority Muslim region to the Indian Union, following invasion by the tribesmen from Pakistan, according to the 1948 Indian White Paper; 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 recognized as a disputed territory. [A plebiscite is the direct vote of all members of an electorate on an important public question being referred to them, in this case accession of Kashmir to India or Pakistan.] It should be noted that the IOA itself does not specify any provisionality or conditionality of accession, while the White Paper specifies it clearly, thus creating a conflict between strict legal interpretation and repeated official promise made to the people of Kashmir.

    The Indian army enters the state on 27 October to repel the invaders. On 27-28 October, Pathan tribesmen engage in looting and killing a large number of people in Baramula, which results in the exodus of over 10,000 residents. There are also charges of atrocities by the Indian army. Sheikh Abdullah endorses the accession as ad-hoc which would be ultimately decided by a plebiscite and is appointed head of the emergency administration. Pakistan disputes that the accession is illegal given the Maharaja acted under duress and that he has no right to sign an agreement with India when the standstill agreement with Pakistan is still in force.

    In November 1947, India proposes that Pakistan withdraw all its troops first, as a precondition for a plebiscite, which Pakistan rejects on the grounds that the Kashmiris may not vote freely given the presence of Indian army and Sheikh Abdullah's friendship with the Indian Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. Pakistan proposes simultaneous withdrawal of all troops followed by a plebiscite under international auspices, which India rejects. Pakistan sends regular forces to Kashmir and the first war over Kashmir breaks out.

  • Alastair Lamb, Incomplete Partition, Roxford 1997, pp.217-222

  • 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 Pakistan calls "Azad" Kashmir and Northern territories. Pakistan claims it is merely supporting an indigenous rebellion in "Azad" Kashmir and Northern Territories against repression, while India terms that territory as POK (Pakistan Occupied Kashmir).

  • 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.

    "..Ultimately - I say this with all deference to this Parliament - the decision will be made in the hearts and minds of the men and women of Kashmir; neither in this Parliament, nor in the United Nations nor by anybody else,"

    - Jawaharlal Nehru, Lok Sabha, August 7, 1952.

  • 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 all the subsequent elections.
    UNCIP Resolution, 30th March, 1951.

  • 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; Article 370 is confirmed and the State is allowed to have its own flag. The domination of Kashmir Valley and Abdullah's land reforms create discontent in Jammu and Ladakh.
  • 1952: Jawaharlal Nehru in the Lok Sabha on August 7 - "...Ultimately - I say this with all deference to this Parliament - the decision will be made in the hearts and minds of the men and women of Kashmir; neither in this Parliament, nor in the United Nations nor by anybody else"
    Selected works of Jawaharlal Nehru, vol. 19 pp. 295-6.

  • 1953-54: 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; Nehru states that he is concerned about the cold-war alignments and that such an alliance affects the Kashmir issue. India would resist plebiscite efforts from then on. Kashmiri activists continue to insist on the promised self-determination.
    • Balraj Puri, Kashmir: Towards Insurgency, New Delhi 1993, p.19.
    • Prem Nath Bazaz, Democracy through Intimidation and Terror, New Delhi: Heritage Publishers, 1978, p.15.

    In September 1954, Pakistan joins SEATO (South East Asian Treaty Organization) and later CENTO (Central Treaty Organization) in 1955, aligning herself with US, UK, Turkey and Iran. From 1955, Indo-Soviet relations become closer with India receiving Soviet military aid and later the Soviet would veto the 1962 UN Security Council resolutions on Kashmir in favour of India.
    Alastair Lamb, Kashmir A Disputed Legacy 1846-1990, Roxford 1991, pp.227-231
  • 1956-1959: 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.

    In April 1959, permit system for entry to the State is abolished. In October, the State Constition is amended to extend jurisdiction of Union Election Commission to the State and bring its High Court at par with those in the rest of India.

  • 1962: India and China go to war on account of a border dispute in the Ladakh region; At the end of war, China occupies 37,555 sq. kms from Indian held Kashmir at Aksai-chin and Demochok in Ladakh. In December, 5180 sq. kms are conditionally taken over by China at Shaksgam in Northern Areas of Kashmir under Pakistan control.

  • 1964: Sheikh Abdullah is released in April 1964; The ailing Prime Minister Nehru sends Abdullah to Pakistan on 25 May, in an effort to resolve the Kashmir problem, taking into account the wishes of Kashmiris; Nehru passes away on 27 May and the talks get stranded.

    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 Centre 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.

  • 1965-1966: In early 1965, India and Pakistan engage in a series of clashes in the Rann of Kutch which ends in a ceasefire on 30 June under British mediation.

    In May 1965, Sheikh Abdullah is arrested on his return to India from Mecca on account of his meeting with the Chinese Prime Minister at Algiers. Angry protests occur in Kashmir Valley; the Plebiscite Front initiates a satyagraha for Abdullah's release and many workers are arrested.

    In Aug 1965, Pakistan undertakes Operation Gibraltar and sends in a few thousand armed infiltrators across the cease-fire line, and incidents of violence increase in Kashmir valley. A full Indo-Pakistani war breaks out which ends in a ceasefire on 23 September. In January 1966, 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 Butt 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. Butt crosses into the Valley in June 1966 and engages in clashes with the Indian army. He is arrested and sentenced to death in 1968 but escapes to Azad Kashmir with help from the local people.
    • Balraj Puri, Kashmir: Towards Insurgency, New Delhi 1993, pp.31-2
    • Alastair Lamb, Kashmir A Disputed Legacy 1846-1990, Roxford 1991, pp.255-271
    • Victoria Schofield, Kashmir in Conflict, New York 2000, pp.114-6.

  • 1967-1968: In April 1967, Jammu Autonomy Forum is formed with the objective of regional autonomy. In November 1968, Gajendragadkar Commission recommends statutory regional development boards.

  • 1971: An Indian Airlines plane, 'Ganga', en route from Srinagar to New Delhi, is hijacked in January and diverted to Lahore and later blown up after allowing passengers to leave. Maqbool Butt claims responsibility.

    India backs sends troops to East Pakistan to defend its secessionist movement against the repressive Pakistani army. Pakistan launches an attack from the West including Kashmir. India defeats Pakistan and East Pakistan becomes independent Bangladesh. The cease-fire line in Kashmir becomes the 'Line of Control'(LOC). Pakistan holds India responsible for the dismemberment of their country.
    Alastair Lamb, Kashmir A Disputed Legacy 1846-1990, Roxford 1991, p.295
  • 1972: 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.
    Simla Agreement
  • The Indian state considers the accession of Kashmir final and thereby rejects talks of plebiscite. She considers Kashmir as an integral part of India and officially denies that Kashmir is disputed. In Feb 2002, Prime Minister Vajpayee has recently stated that India will not accept LOC as the international border and that the issue of POK will top the agenda.
  • 1974: In November, Kashmir Accord is signed by G.Parthasarathy for Indira Gandhi and Mirza Afzal Beg for Sheikh Abdullah, who is out of power at that time. The Accord retains Kashmir's special status, but the state is termed as a 'constituent unit of the Union of India'. Opposition parties and Pakistan condemn the Accord. Abdullah is installed back in power. Later in 1977, he would speak in favour of protecting the autonomy and special status of Kashmir.
    Victoria Schofield, Kashmir in Conflict, New York 2000, p.125.
    Kashmir Accord

  • 1976: Maqbool Butt 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 1980's. The Sikri Commission is appointed to inquire into regional grievances in J&K.

  • 1984: Indian and Pakistani armies engage in clashes in Siachen Glacier, a no-man's land at an altitude of 20,000ft with extreme weather conditions, where the cease-fire line had been left undefined by 1972 Simla Agreement; Siachen is perceived to be of strategic importance for access to the Northern Areas and the spasmodic clashes would continue through later years, costing thousands of lives and billions of dollars.
    Alastair Lamb, Kashmir A Disputed Legacy 1846-1990, Roxford 1991, p.326

  • 1987: Farooq Abdullah wins the elections. The Muslim United Front (MUF) accuses that the elections have been rigged. The MUF candidate Mohammad Yousuf Shah is imprisoned and he would later become Syed Salahuddin, chief of militant outfit Hizb-ul-Mujahedin. His election aides (known as the HAJY group) - Abdul Hamid Shaikh, Ashfaq Majid Wani, Javed Ahmed Mir and Mohammed Yasin Malik - would join the JKLF.
    Balraj Puri, Kashmir: Towards Insurgency, New Delhi 1993, p.52
    A.G. Noorani, Contours of militancy
    Pankaj Mishra, The Birth of a Nation

    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 are recruited by JKLF.

  • 1988: Protests begin in the Valley along with anti-India demonstrations, followed by police firing and curfew.
  • 1989: Militancy increases with bomb blasts. On 8 December, Rubaiya Sayeed, daughter of the Home Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed is kidnapped by the JKLF. She is released safely on 13 December in exchange for the release of five JKLF leaders. Kashmiri Pandits Jia Lal Taploo and Neel Kanth Ganjoo are killed by militants, the latter for sentencing Maqbool Butt to death in 1984.

    Soviet occupation of Afghanistan comes to and end. A large numbers of militant and weapons enter Kashmir through Pakistan, further fueling the discontent.
    Human Rights Watch, Arms Pipeline, 1994.

    In the Indian Defence Review of July 1989, one of India's top defence specialists, K.Subrahmanyam, cites the existence of a secret Pakistani plan to start a Kashmiri uprising, code-named 'Operation Topac', that the late General Zia-ul-Haq reportedly set in motion. However, this plan is later shown to be false and concocted by Indian analysts as a hypothetical exercise, a fact Subrahmanyam later acknowledges. Curiously, Operation Topac continues to be quoted by Indian officials including the Indian Embassy.
    Edward Desmond, The Insurgency in Kashmir(1989-1991), Contemporary South Asia (March 1995), 4(1), p.8

  • 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.
    Victoria Schofield, Kashmir in Conflict, New York 2000, pp.143-154.
    Balraj Puri, Kashmir: Towards Insurgency, New Delhi 1993, pp.60-61.

    On 13 February, Lassa Kaul, director of Srinagar Doordarshan, is killed by the militants for pro-India media policy. In the end of February, an estimated 400,000 kashmiris take to the streets of Srinagar, demanding a plebiscite.

    On March 1, an estimated one million take to the streets and more than forty people are killed in police firing. Massive protest marches by unarmed civilians continue in Srinagar.

    The JKLF tries to explain that the killings of Pandits were not communal. 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 in March.

    In May, an estimated 200,000 Kashmiris take to the streets in a funeral procession of the martyred leader Mirwaiz Maulvi Farooq; over 100 are killed in police firing. Jagmohan resigns and Girish Saxena is appointed as the new Governor.

    Pakistan considers Kashmir as a disputed territory and has insisted on implementation of a plebiscite as per UN resolutions. That Pakistan has beem arming and training foreign militants besides indigenous militants, is acknowledged by most nations commenting on the conflict, due to compelling evidence. Since 1990, Pakistan has played down the demands of the pro-independence groups in Kashmir, and has primarily supported groups for whom 'liberation' of Kashmir means 'accession to Pakistan'.
  • 1990-2001: An officially estimated 10,000 desperate Kashmiri youth cross-over to Pakistan for training and procurement of arms. The Hizb which is backed by Pakistan, increases its strength dramatically. ISI favours the Hizb over the secular JKLF and cuts off financing to the JKLF and in some instances provides intelligence to India against JKLF. In April 1991, Kashmiris hold anti-Pakistan demonstrations in Srinagar following killing of a JKLF area commander by the Hizb. In 1992, Pakistan forces arrest 500 JKLF marchers led by Amanulla Khan in POK to prevent bid to cross the border. India also uses intelligence from captured militants. JKLF militancy declines. The JKLF faction led by Yasin Malik announces unilateral ceasefire in 1994 and pursues political agenda under the All Parties Hurriyat (Freedom) Conference (APHC) umbrella, followed by Amanulla Khan's JKLF faction's ceasefire in 1997. Since 1995, foreign militant outfits with Islamic agenda such as Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Harkat-ul-Mujahedin have dominated the militancy in Kashmir, besides the indigenous Hizb, all of them under the umbrella United Jehadi Council(UJC). Other indigenous and foreign militant organizations proliferate.

    Renegade militants supported by the Indian security forces are used for extrajudicial executions of militants, besides human right activists, journalists and other civilians, and conveniently dismissed as "intergroup rivalries". In 1997, the Director General of Police Gurbachan Jagat acknowledges that continued services of the renegades have become counter-productive in view of their excesses. The most serious incident of a communal nature namely the murder of sixteen male Hindus in Kishtwar in August 1993 is condemned by the JKLF and the Hizb. According to official reports, 307 Hindus and 377 Muslims have been killed in the Doda and Rajouri districts as of 1998. Hindu fundamentalism by the local armed Village Defence Committee (VDC) backed by the Army and terrorism by Muslim insurgents in defense of the Muslim community, have fed each other. Some militant groups with Islamic agenda have attacked women sporadically for not wearing the veil, which has been condemned by the indigenous militants. The APHC has recently called for foreign militants to leave Kashmir, since they are tarnishing the image of their freedom struggle.
    Praveen Swami, The Kargil War, New Delhi 1999, pp.71-2.
    Guardian UK,Kashmiris tell militants to go

  • In November 1995, a BBC documentary programme showed evidence of camps in Azad Kashmir and Pakistan, supported by the Jamaat-i-Islami (political wing of the Hizb), where fighters were trained and openly professed their intention of fighting in Kashmir.

  • In May 1998, India conducts nuclear tests; Pakistan also responds with nuclear tests. On 21 February 1999, India and Pakistan sign Lahore Declaration, agreeing to 'intensify their efforts to resolve all issues, including the issue of Jammu and Kashmir.' Soon after his visit to Lahore, the Indian Prime Minister Vajpayee states that 'Kashmir is an integral part of India and not a single area of Indian soil would be given away.'
    Victoria Schofield, Kashmir in Conflict, New York 2000, pp.207-8.

  • In June 1998 A Farooq Abdullah instituted Regional Autonomy Committee (RAC) proposes devolution of political power at regional, district, block and panchayats levels and allocation of funds according to an objective and equitable formula. Measures are also suggested to safeguard and promote cultures of various ethnic communities. 6 months after the recommendations, the State Government substitutes the RAC report with its own report recommending the division of the three regions (Ladakh, Kashmir and Jammu) into eight autonomous units on ethnic-religious lines without proposing any devolution of political and economic powers.
    Balraj Puri, Jammu on the brink, 2001

  • In May 1999, the Indian Army patrols detect intruders from Pakistan on Kargil ridges in Kashmir. India fights to regain lost territory. The infiltrators are withdrawn by Pakistan in mid-July, following the Washington Agreement with the US. War between India and Pakistan becomes more frightening given the nuclear weaponry possessed by both countries and Kashmir remains the underlying flashpoint.

  • In March 2000, around the time of US President Clinton's visit to India, unidentified gunmen gun down 35 Sikhs at Chittisinghpora; India blames foreign militants; Kashmiris blame renegade militants employed by Indian security forces; A few days later, security forces kill five persons in an "encounter" at Panchalthan village and claim they are "foreign militants" responsible for the Sikh massacre. Later, in July 2002, DNA testing of the corpses proves that the five persons killed were civilians. No judicial inquiry has been conducted on the Sikh massacre till date.
    The Hindu,`Security forces killed civilians', 17 July 2002.
    Praful Bidwai, Massacre of J&K Sikhs
    Amnesty International, Impunity must end in Jammu and Kashmir, 2001.
    Pankaj Mishra, Death in Kashmir

  • In June 2000, the State Autonomy Committee( SAC) Report is discussed and an autonomy resolution is adopted in the J&K Assembly. The SAC Report recommends restoration of Article 370 to pre-1953 status with Indian jurisdiction limited to defence, foreign affairs and communications. The Indian Cabinet rejects the autonomy recommendation in July.
    Ashok Behuria, Autonomy Debate in Jammu and Kashmir
    BBC News, Anger over Kashmir decision

  • In November 2000, India announces an unilateral ceasefire in Kashmir which continues through May 2001; APHC welcomes the ceasefire but states that the ceasefire will not be effective unless it is supplemented with unconditional dialogues to resolve the Kashmir dispute and an end to human right violations by the Indian forces. The Hizb declares an unilateral ceasefire in July which is withdrawn only two weeks later, following India's refusal to include Pakistan in any trilateral talks over the Kashmir dispute proposed by the militants.
    BBC News, Kashmir ceasefire extended till May
    BBC News, Kashmiri separatists propose peace

  • In July 2001, India and Pakistan fail to arrive at a joint agreement at Agra Summit. India accuses Pakistan for engaging in cross-border terrorism. Pakistan denies the accusations.
    BBC news,Kashmir issue blocks summit deal, 17 July, 2001
    BBC News, Pakistan blames India for train bomb

  • Dec 13, 2001: Terrorist attack the Indian Parliament, India and Pakistan build up massive troops along the border.

  • May 14, 2002:: At least 30 people are killed in a terrorist attack on an Indian army camp in Jammu.

  • May 21, 2002: Abdul Ghani Lone, a leading and popular moderate Hurriyat leader is assassinated by unidentified gunmen. Mirwaiz Maulvi Farooq had been assassinated by unidentified gunmen in similar fashion 12 years preceding this. On both occasions, India blames Pakistan sponsored militants while Kashmiris blame Indian sponsored renegades. An impartial investigation has not yet been carried out.

India Together is interested in compiling as accurate and complete a chronology as possible. If you dispute any of the material listed here, please email us your alternate version, along with documentary evidence, and we will certainly pass those on to our reviewers. Please write to editors@indiatogether.org with your thoughts and input.

The Hurriyat conference (APHC) is an umbrella organization of over 20 political, social and religious groups founded in 1993. It is political face of the Kashmiri separatist movement. The response to APHC's calls for strikes and protests indicate that it has support. The Hurriyat is committed to self-determination for Kashmiris and fighting Indian rule by peaceful means and has thus far refused to participate in Jammu & Kashmir's elections, although it is deeply divided in whether the ultimate objective is independence or accession to Pakistan.
Section conclusion

Any claim that all would be well in Kashmir but for Pakistan's cross-border terrorism is simplistic and hides the internal trauma in the Valley. Grave human rights violations by the Indian security forces, such as arbitrary arrests, torture, rape and extrajudicial killings, continue to be reported, being extensively documented by human rights organizations. Violence and human rights violations by militants continue. Pakistan controls Azad Kashmir and Northern Territories in a repressive manner. Kashmiris are alienated from both countries given brutal repression by India and violent excesses by pro-Pakistan militants. In a recent poll by Mori, only 9% and 13% of people of Kashmir Valley have preferred to join India and Pakistan respectively. Kashmiri activists resent the gradual erosion of their autonomy promised under Article 370 and the fact that the promised self-determination ** has been denied so far and hence insist on being included in the talks without preconditions, which both India and Pakistan resist. The evolving consensus opinion however is that UN resolutions are out-dated, since the dispute has evolved into tripartite; that other solutions like regional autonomy and independence should be considered given that various regions in Kashmir have evolved independently since 1947 and that the conflict is restricted to the Kashmir Valley whose area is less than 16% of the total area of Indian controlled J&K. It is no secret that the majority people of Jammu and Ladakh want to remain with India.

The Hurriyat claims to represent the whole state, however it has refused to indicate the future status of various regions and communities within the proposed state. The Hurriyat does not have strong support outside the Kashmir Valley and parts of Azad Kashmir and hence needs to accomodate regional solutions. Abdul Ghani Lone, the most popular leader among the Hurriyat moderates, and well known for his rejection of the gun, was assassinated in May 2002.
The toll

As of June 1999, an estimated 400,000 army troops and other federal security forces were deployed in the valley, including those positioned along the Line of Control. Since 1990, over 40,000 people are estimated to have been killed in Kashmir , about half of them are civilians; According to official handouts (which tend to be conservative in the number of Muslim civilians killed by the security forces and mostly exclude thousands of custodial killings), 2477 civilians had been killed by Indian security forces, 6673 civilians and 1593 security personnel had been killed by the militants amounting to a total of 19,866 killings (counting 8000+ militants) as of 1998, including 982 Hindus and Sikhs killed as of 1999. An estimated 36,000 Hindu families and 20,000 Muslim families (as of 1993) have fled the Valley and many of them still languish in the refugee camps in Jammu and Azad Kashmir, being displayed by India and Pakistan respectively for propaganda. Akhila Raman
June 2002

  1. Akhila Raman is a researcher on the Kashmir conflict. The June 2002 edition of this page was reviewed by Pervez Hoodbhoy and Angana Chatterji. Pervez Hoodbhoy is a professor of physics at Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad. Angana P. Chatterji is Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology at California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco.

  2. *Jammu and Kashmir is also referred to as Kashmir in short. It consists of the Kashmir Valley (15,948 sq.kms= 6158 sq. mile), Jammu (26,293 sq.kms) and Ladakh(59,146 sq.kms) under Indian control; "Azad" Kashmir (13,297 sq.kms) and Northern Territories (64,817 sq.kms) under Pakistani control; Aksai Chin, Demochok(37,555 sq.kms) and Shaksgam(5,180 sq.kms) under Chinese control, at present. In the post-1949 ceasefire context, J&K(or Kashmir) is used to refer to the Indian held territory, unless specified otherwise. According to 1981 census, the Kashmir Valley has a population of 3.1 million with 95% Muslim majority; Jammu and Ladakh are predominantly Hindu and Buddhist respectively; the total population of Indian and Pakistan controlled J&K is 6 million (with 64% Muslim majority) and 2.55 million (with 100% Muslim majority) respectively. The term 'Kashmiris' has been used to denote the people of Kashmir or Kashmir Valley depending on the context.
    Jammu-kashmir.com, Facts and Figures

  3. **Self-determination refers to the clause 'the will of the people shall be ascertained regarding the question of accession' in 1948 Indian White Paper and the UN resolutions.