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Jammu And Kashmir


The history of Jammu & Kashmir is quite old. In 250 BC, Ashoka, the great Mauryan king, established the city of Pandrethan and built many viharas and chaityas. Kanishka, the great Kushana king, called the Third Buddhist Council at Harwan, near Srinagar, in the first century AD. This Council saw the division of Buddhism in two distinct streams called Hinayana and Mahayana.

Local kingdoms ruled extensively in this region until the 12th century AD when Muslims invaded the region. The greatest Muslim king of early medieval age in Kashmir was Zain-ul-Abidin. He got the throne in AD 1420 and ruled up to 1470. His long rule contributed extensively to the spread of art, culture, music, and every other field in the life of Kashmir people. He created a strong army and conquered many regions nearby Kashmir. These were the times of golden rule in Kashmir, when peace and harmony prevailed. After the death of King Zain-ul-Abidin, was a period of destruction for Kashmir where many raiders from outside looted the state and made the people and local rulers their captives.

In 1587, Akbar annexed Kashmir into his vast empire. Jahangir, son of Akbar, created two beautiful gardens in Kashmir on the bank of Dal Lake namely, the Shalimar Bagh and Nishat Bagh. After two centuries, Kashmir came into the hands of the Pathans in 1752, when the Afghan ruler Abdul Shah Abdali attacked this region on the request of local noblemen. The Pathans established a rule of terror here.

In 1819, the Sikhs under Maharaja Ranjit Singh annexed this region, but their empire remained in place only for 27 years. From 1846 to 1957, the Dogras ruled over this region when British defeated Ranjit Singh and handed over the administration of this region to Maharaja Gulab Singh. During India’s freedom struggle, people from this state participated extensively under the leadership of Sheikh Abdullah and joined India in 1948 after the country became independent.

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