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The Kashmir is called the heaven on earth. Irish poet Thomas Moore's 1817 romantic poem Lalla  Rookh is credited with having made Kashmir (spelt Cashmere in the poem) "a household term in  Anglophone (English speaking) societies", conveying the idea that it was a kind of paradise (an  old idea going back to Hindu and Buddhist texts in Sanskrit). Kashmir has lush green valleys,  mountains, rivers, glaciers and plains.  

克什米尔被称为人间天堂。因爱尔兰诗人托马斯·摩尔(Thomas Moore)在他1817年的浪漫主义诗歌《拉拉·鲁克》(Lalla Rookh)中描写成了天堂一样的地方,克什米尔成了英语国家社会中一个家喻户晓的名字。克什米尔有郁郁葱葱的山谷、山脉、河流、冰川和平原。


After the Partition of India in 1947, the former princely state of the British Indian Empire became a disputed territory, now administered by three countries: India, Pakistan, and China.  According to Burton Stein's History of India, "Kashmir was neither as large nor as old an independent state as Hyderabad; it had been created rather off-handedly by the British after the first defeat of the Sikhs in 1846, as a reward  to a former official who had sided with the British. The Himalayan kingdom was connected to  India through a district of the Punjab, but its population was 77 per cent Muslim and it shared a  boundary with Pakistan. Hence, it was anticipated that the maharaja would accede to Pakistan  when the British paramountcy ended on 14–15 August. When he hesitated to do this, Pakistan  launched a guerrilla onslaught meant to frighten its ruler into submission. Instead the Maharaja  appealed to Mountbatten for assistance, and the governor-general agreed on the condition that  the ruler accede to India. Indian soldiers entered Kashmir and drove the Pakistani-sponsored  irregulars from all but a small section of the state. The United Nations was then invited to  mediate the quarrel. The UN mission insisted that the opinion of Kashmiris must be ascertained,  while India insisted that no referendum could occur until all of the state had been cleared of  irregulars." 


1947年印度分治后,这里成了一片有争议的领土,现在由三个国家管理:印度、巴基斯坦和中国。根据Burton Stein的印度史,“克什米尔既没有海得拉巴那么大,也没有海得拉巴那么古老;1846英国人创立了这个地方,用来奖励当时帮助英国战胜锡克教徒的一位官员(其实是汉奸)。喜马拉雅王国通过旁遮普的一个地区与印度相连,但其人口中77%是穆斯林,与巴基斯坦接壤。因此,大众预计这个王公会在8月14日至15日(也是印巴分治的日子,巴基斯坦和印度的国庆节)英国统治结束时加入巴基斯坦。巴基斯坦人有点猴急,在当他犹豫不决时,发动了游击队袭击,本想着恐吓一下,让他屈服,没曾想到,王公向蒙巴顿总督求助,总督同意了他加入印度。印度士兵进入克什米尔,将巴基斯坦支持的游击队赶出该邦的一小部分地区。联合国介入,提议由克什米尔人来觉得加入哪一边,也就是公投,而印度则坚持认为,要先把游击队全部剿灭,不然不可能举行全民公决。”

In the last days of 1948, a ceasefire was agreed under UN auspices. However, since the plebiscite demanded by the UN was never conducted, relations between India and Pakistan  soured, and eventually led to two more wars over Kashmir in 1965 and 1999. 


Azad (Free) Kashmir 

The Pakistani administered Kashmir is called Azad Kashmir, while the Indian administered  Kashmir is called Occupied Kashmir by the people of Pakistan. Interestingly the Chinese  administered Kashmir is not talked about by Pakistani people and government.  



I will write about the Kashmir issue in detail some other time, today I will take you on a journey  the Kashmir valley in Pakistan. 


After having breakfast in Islamabad, we left for Rawalakot in Kashmir. It takes 3 to 5 hours by  road from Islamabad. We took a longer way via Muree because the other route from Kahuta has  areas prone to land sliding. River Jehlam acts as a natural boundary between Punjab and  Kashmir. We stopped at Kohala bridge, on Jehlam river to enjoy the cold water of Jehlam river  and have a tea. The locals have placed charpai (beds) along the river under the shades. The river  water was sweet and thirst quencher. The tea tasted good with half of our legs covered in cold  water.  



Restaurants have sitting places besides the river and somewhere inside the smaller portion of  river. 


Across the Jehlam River the beautiful valley of Kashmir starts, with fruit trees, corn fields,  sunflower fields and pine tree covered mountains.  


Dense tree covered mountains, with river flowing in the valley. We stopped by a walnut tree full of fresh walnut beside the road to enjoy the walnuts.