As soon as the name of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir comes, curiosity comes to the mind of every Indian.
The curiosity grows, after all, how is that part of India, how are the people there, how is their language and culture which Pakistan has captured. If you study about this area, then many very interesting facts come to the fore.
Border dispute and China Pakistan
The border disputes with Bangladesh and Sri Lanka in the Indian border countries have been almost resolved. There is only a partial dispute with Myanmar (Burma) and Nepal, but the two countries with which there is a serious dispute are China and Pakistan.
Our dispute with China is of two types, one in Arunachal Pradesh and its adjoining areas which China claims as its own. Second, there is a dispute related to the border which is not the area in the Ladakh region.
China never says that Ladakh or Kashmir belongs to it, but Aksai tries to be a bull about the extent of China’s border. Our dispute with Pakistan is over the area.
It does not consider Kashmir to be a part of India and calls the Indian parts it has occupied Azad Kashmir.
If we look at the Indian map, then the Indian parts which have been occupied by Pakistan can be divided into two parts. One is Mirpur, the part of Muzaffarabad which is connected with the lower part of Jammu and Kashmir on the border and the other part of Gilgit-Baltistan which is connected with Ladakh in the upper part of Kashmir.
Actually, there is a contradiction between these two parts in terms of area and population. Pakistan has occupied our 78 thousand square kilometre area, of which about 64 thousand kilometres is Gilgit-Baltistan and 14000 square kilometres is the Mirpur-Muzaffarabad area.
About 5 million people live in this area, out of which about 1.4 million people live in the larger area Gilgit-Baltistan and 3.6 million in Mirpur-Muzaffarabad.
India on PoK
Gilgit-Baltistan, divided into fourteen districts, is strategically and strategically very important. The border of Mirpur, Muzaffarabad meets only with Pakistan, but Afghanistan, Pakistan, China and India run in all four directions through Gilgit-Baltistan.
Eight of the world’s 25 highest mountain peaks are in this area, including K-2, the second-highest mountain peak after Mount Everest.
The largest glacier of the Polar region and the second-largest Devasai plateau is also in this area. This area is very rich in terms of mines.
Gold, mica, copper and precious stones are found in abundance here. It is one of the most beautiful areas in the world in terms of tourism.
If we look at the political existence of these two areas, then the area of Mirpur Muzaffarabad has a special status and is also called Azad Kashmir and officially there is a ban on the settlement of people from Pakistan but during the period of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto from Gilgit Baltistan. This facility was taken away.
Every effort was made in this area to change their identity and bring them closer to Pakistan. People from outside were settled in this area. This is the reason that between 1998 and 2011, the population of Gilgit-Baltistan grew by 63 per cent, while that of the Mirpur-Muzaffarabad area grew by only 23 per cent.
Most of the population of Mirpur, Muzaffarabad and Gilgit-Baltistan is Muslim, but the living conditions of Gilgit Muslims are different from Pakistani Muslims. The Muslims of this region are mainly Shia, Noorbakshi, Ismaili and Talibani.
Noorbakshi is found only in this area around the world. According to religion, the people here are Muslims, but the language of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir does not match with the language of Pakistanis. Pahari, Patwari, Kashmiri, Hindko, Sinha, Pasto and most of all Gurjari are spoken in this area.
Culture and the world of POK
Today in Pakistan-occupied Gilgit-Baltistan, 100 per cent of the population may have been Muslim, but history tells a different story. In ancient times, it was ruled by the Maurya dynasty and Ashoka also propagated Buddhism here. The Kushan dynasty ruled here in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD.
In the medieval period, Shah Jahan captured the area in 1637 and remained under the Mughals till 1753. After this, the area was occupied by the Afghans which lasted till 1819. In the same year, the Sikhs occupied here under the leadership of Gulab Singh. The British also showed their political ambition in this area.
When information about the spread of Russia towards this area started being received, the British first formed the Gilgit Agency here in 1877. He later took the area on a 60-year lease from the Maharaja in 1935. After the country became independent in 1947, the British returned this area to the Maharaja.
Two prominent travel writers, Hiuen Tsang in ancient times and Ibn Battuta in medieval times visited this area and mentioned it in their accounts.
There was also a Hindu population in this area then. The famous temples built here testify to this, the biggest example of this is the Sharda Peeth, about which it is said that Shankaracharya also visited this place and got this great title from this Peeth.
Talking about the political situation of this area, the Mirpur Muzaffarabad area has a special status. There is a puppet president and prime minister.
45 members are elected in the assembly here, out of which 12 members are Indian refugees from Jammu and Kashmir. Eight members are nominated out of which 5 are reserved for women.
Pakistan has declared Gilgit-Baltistan as its part. This area does not have any special status. Even the big bureaucrats are sent from Pakistan and imposed. In today’s situation, Pakistan may pacify Mirpur, Muzaffarabad, but there is deep anger against the Pakistani rule in Gilgit-Baltistan. Often their movements are strictly suppressed.