Question - An analysis of how the religious rivalry and the fight over Kashmir caused the first Kashmir war of 1947.
Part A- Investigation outline
In this investigation I am going to analyze how the religious rivalry and fighting over Kashmir caused the first Kashmir war of 1947. I am going to look at how religious rivalry between Hindus and Muslims had built up prior 1947 in Kashmir and how it continued which consequently lead to a the first Kashmir war of 1947. In this investigation I will also analyze how and why the fight over Kashmir was a major reason towards the war in Kashmir and how the war had destroyed relationships between India and Pakistan during the conflict. Hindu-Muslim rivalry was a major problem in Kashmir as it was occupied by a Hindu Monarch, Maharaja Hari Singh who ruled to a majority of Muslims in Kashmir.1 This caused tensions as Muslim leader Muhammad Ali Jinnah wanted full occupation of Kashmir under Pakistan. One of my sources is to interview my grandfather who was present in India during this conflict and had strong knowledge of the events taking place as he spoke to soldiers from his village that had fought during the war. My other source is the book by Peter Lyon called “Conflict between India and Pakistan.” This is source from a well-known author who is the member of the US-based Kashmir group and had learnt about commonwealth countries in University. This book is more useful in this aspect as it has information that is in a lot more depth compared to other books about Kashmir.
Part B- Summary and Evidence
Prior to 1947 Kashmir had faced many diplomatic problems due to the rivalry that was heating up between Hindus and Muslims. This occurred straight after the partition of India and Pakistan, where most Muslims migrated to the new state Pakistan and Hindus stayed in India, however there were still many Muslims staying in India. Soon after the partition AJK was formed which is known as Azad (free) Jammu Kashmir, this was a group that wanted a free Kashmir and no intervention by Pakistan and India2. At this time AJK was supported by Pakistani troops, which consequently ended up as a Pakistani army plot that took over territories in Kashmir.3 The dispute of Kashmir was under full action when the Maharaja of Kashmir Hari Singh wanted Kashmir to join the state of India, however the protests and arguments took place as Kashmir was mainly Muslim, and the their leader Muhammad Ali Jinnah wanted Pakistan to have full control over Kashmir. 4
Tensions were at its peak, operation “Gulmarg” had been planned out by Pakistan to take over Kashmir.5 This operation was the starting point of the first Kashmir war. The operation consisted of Pakistani troops invading districts of Kotli, Mirpur and Sialkot, so that they could have movement further into Kashmir and capture Rajauri and Poonch, which were placed in central Kashmir6. AJK forces also played a major role as the occupied many territories in the Himalayas until they were stopped by Indian troops in the outskirts of Leh.7 Indian troops being aware of this situation airlifted troops and weapons into Kashmir and this lead to the underway of the first Kashmir war.
Religious rivalry also played a major role in the causation of this war as Hindu Muslim tensions had been in its peak before the partition and the hatred towards each other’s religions seemed permanent. During the freedom movement for independence Hindu’s seemed to have no support and room for the Muslims. During the rule of the Indian National Congress, they limited Muslims and submitted them to degradations by not building any more mosques.8 Mahatma Gandhi announced the separation of these two religions into two different countries, India and Pakistan. This made the hatred and rivalry between the religions even more bitter and the fight for territorial gains was bound to occur. As interviewed my grandfather he stated “Rivalry between Hindu’s and Muslims were at its peak in...
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