NOTABLE HISTORICAL FACTS
Northern-most Indus Valley Civilisation site located in Jammu and Kashmir
MAKING OF A CELESTIAL GLOBE
The first seamless celestial globe was made in Kashmir by Ali Kashmiri Ibn Luqman in the reign of the Emperor Akbar. Global world got attracted to this invention in the field of metallurgy.
Two of the most notable works in Sanskrit from medieval Kashmir are Kalhan’s Rajatarangani which gives a detailed account of the Kings of Kashmir and Somadeva’s Katha-sarit- sagar which is a poetic work.
In the early medieval period when the Bhakti movement was at its peak, Kashmiri language saw its first female poetess called Lal Ded, who was a Shaivite mystic.
Another interesting person in Kashmiri literature is Noor Din who was also known as Nund Rishi and was purported to bring the Hindi and Islamic elements together in his poetry
PHYSIOGRAPHY AND ENVRIONMENT
GEOGRAPHICAL FEATURES & FOREST AREA
GEOGRAPHICAL FEATURES OF JAMMU AND KASHMIR
❖ Jammu and Kashmir has a geographic area of 101387 Sq. Kms.
❖ It lies between Latitude 32°17’ and 37°05’ North and longitude 72°31’and 80°20’ East.
❖ The State is divided into three geographic regions viz. Ladakh, Kashmir Valley and Jammu.
❖ The higher regions are covered by Pir Panjal, Karakoram and inner Himalayan ranges of mountains.
❖ The important river systems of the State are the Chenab, the Tawi and the Jhelum.
❖ Forests of the state are spread over three broad geo-climatic zones covering Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh regions of the State.
❖ Vegetation and climate can broadly be categorized into sub-tropical, temperate and alpine zones with wide diversity of fauna and flora. More than 50% of the plant species used in British pharmacopoeia are reported to grow in Jammu and Kashmir.
❖ Literature indicates that 572 plant species belonging to 109 different families have medicinal value.
❖ The recorded Forest area is 20230 Sq. Kms. which constitutes 19.95 % of geographical area of the State. Forests are largely distributed in Kashmir Valley and Jammu regions.
❖ Leh and Kargil are devoid of Forest Vegetation as the region is cold desert.
❖ There are five forest types occurring in the State Viz. Subtropical Dry Evergreen, Himalayan Moist Temperate, Himalayan Dry Temperate, Subtropical Pine and Sub-alpine and alpine Forests.
❖ climate of Jammu and Kashmir varies greatly owing to its rugged topography.
❖ All the rivers freeze over and locals make river crossings during winter period because their high levels from glacier melt in summer inhibits crossing.
❖ The climate of Jammu and Kashmir is to a large extent influenced by the mountains it is surrounded by.
❖ The temperature is greatly moderated by these mountains and the water bodies.
❖ As the altitude varies in Jammu Kashmir, all the three divisions experience a different environment.
❖ While Kashmir has a moderate climate,
❖ Ladakh is a cold desert with extreme temperatures and
❖ Jammu is a sub-tropical region with abundant sunshine and hot temperature.
DRAINAGE AND RIVER SYSTEMS
JHELUM – VITASTA
➢ The river Jhelum is commonly known as ‘The Veth’.
➢ The river flows throughout the length of the valley.
➢ This river flows as a muddy stream and is a famous tourist attraction, especially the nine old brides that have been made over it all along in the Srinagar city.
➢ The source of this famous river is Verinag spring in district Anantnag.
➢ In the Valley of Kashmir this river has a length of about 203 kms.
➢ After passing through Srinagar it flows into the Wular Lake, which is regarded as its delta and then passing through Baramulla and Uri, it flows to Pakistan.
➢ Srinagar, Anantnag and Baramulla cities are situated on both sides of this river.
➢ Most of the electricity generated in Kashmir Valley is generated by the Hydel projects constructed on this river.
• The Indus River originates at the confluence of the Sind River & the Gar River, which is Mansaror Lake in Tibet.
• It is the longest river in the subcontinent. While it is about 3500 kms long, 1500 km of it flows through Jammu and Kashmir.
• The river is excellent for those interested in water rafting.
• The Indus River flows in between the Ladakh range and the Zansk arrange.
• Indus has numerous tributaries, principal among them are Gilgit River,Gumal River and Kabul River.
• This river runs across the northern areas of Ladakh and some parts ofPakistan (Ghanghche district) for approximately 340 miles or 550 km.
• It is a major branch of the Indus River.
• The source of the Shyok River is the Rimo glacier.
• The merging of two Himalayan rivers forms the river Chenab.
• These are the Chandra River & the Bhaga River.
• Thus, the river Chenab is popularly known as the Chandrabhaga.
• Chenab river is also well known for its historical importance.
• This river is famous for its ice-cold water and trout Fish.
• Kishan Ganga River is in Drass (Kargil) in inner Himalayas.
• After passing through the mountain tracks of Gurez, Keran and Karnah,Kishan Ganga joins the Jhelum at Doemel. Kishan Ganga hydro-electric Project is situated on this river.
• The source of Tawi is the Kailash Kund Spring at Soej hills in Bhaderwah.
• After flowing through the Chennani and Udhampur, Tawi passes through Jammu and joins the Chenab and then enters Pakistan.
• The Tsarap River is a major river in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
• Also known as Tsarap Chu, it runs across the Zanskar area in Ladakh.
• The Yapola River is also named the Wanla River.
• It is a river in the Ladakh region of the state & pours into the Indus Riverat Lamayuru.
• The Zanskar River is a tributary of the Indus River.
• It runs to the north of the Indus and it has two principal branches.
• The first branch is known as the Doda River and the second branch is created by the Kargyag River and Tsarap River.
• Ravi is a Trans boundary river flowing through northwestern India and Northeastern Pakistan.
• After the partition of India in 1947, the waters of River Ravi along with five other rivers of the Indus system (Beas, Sutlej, Chenab, Jhelum andIndus) keep India and Pakistan under the Indus Water Treaty and form the headquarters of Indus Basin.
• The river drains a total catchment area of 14442 sq kms in India after flowing for a length of 720 kms.
• A major tributary that joins Ravi is Siawa near Basholi in the State.
• It flows along the Indo-Pak border for about 80 kms, before entering Pakistan and joining the Chenab.
• The major multipurpose project built on this river is Ranjit Sagar Dam in village
The outer plain of Jammu is covered with alluvial soils which were deposited by running water and fluvio-glacial action. The hilly and mountainous areas aregenerally covered by residual soils, while other areas are covered with alluvial and moraine soils.
• Dal is a lake in Srinagar (Dal Lake is a misnomer as Dal in Kashmiri means lake), the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir.
• The urban lake, is integral to tourism and recreation in Kashmir and is Named the “Jewel in the crown of Kashmir” or “Srinagar’s Jewel”.
• The lake is an important source for commercial operations in fishing and Water plant harvesting.
• The wetland is divided by causeways into four basins; Gagribal, Lokut Dal, Bod Dal and Nagin (although Nagin is also considered as an independent lake). Lokut-dal and Bod-dal each have an island in the centre, known as Rup Lank (or Char Chinari) and Sona Lank respectively.
• Scenic views of the lake can be witnessed from the shore line Mughal gardens, such as Shalimar Bagh and Nishat Bagh built during the reign of Mughal Emperor Jahangir and from houseboats cruising along the lake in the colourful shikaras.
• Birds: grey leg geese, mallard, ducks, pochards, Peasant Tail Jasana Come from Siberia, China, Central Asia and North Europe
• During the winter season, the temperature sometimes reaches -11 °C (12 °F),freezing the lake.
WULAR LAKE (RAMSAR SITE)
• Wular Lake is the 2nd largest fresh-water lake of Asia, situated on the foothills of Haramuk Mountain. I -t is spread in a total area of 200 square kmcovering almost 24 km in Length while its breadth is 10 km.
• The lake lies between the towns of Sopur and Bandippore, in Sangrama, near Baramula Road.
• Main source of water for Wular Lake is River Jhelum. This lake also has a Smallisland in its centre called the ‘Zaina Lank’. This island was. Constructed by King Zainul-Abi-Din.
• Birds: Short- Eagle Little Cuckoo, European Hoopoe, Monal Pheasant andHimalayan Pied Woodpecker – Wular Lake is also said to be a remnant of Satisar Lake that existed In ancient times.
HOKERA WETLAND (RAMSAR SITE)
• Located at the northwest Himalayan bio geographic province of Kashmir, back of the snow-draped Pir Panchal.
• Known as the ‘Queen Wetland of Kashmir
• Also known as Hokersar wetland.
• A natural perennial wetland contiguous to the Jhelum basin, it is the only site with remaining reed beds of Kashmir and pathway of 68 waterfowl species like Large Egret, Great Crested Grebe, Little Cormorant, Common Shelduck, Tufted Duck and endangered White-eyed Pochard, coming from Siberia, China, Central Asia, and Northern Europe.
SURINSAR MANSAR WETLAND (RAMSAR SITE)
• Surinsar Lake and Mansar Lake are considered to be twin lakes.
• Freshwater composite lake in semi-arid Panjab Plains, adjoining the Jhelum Basin with catchment of sandy conglomeratic soil, boulders and pebbles.
• Surinsar is rain-fed without permanent discharge, and Mansar is primarily fed by surface run-off and partially by mineralised water through paddy fields, with inflow increasing in rainy season
. • According to Mahabharta , the origin of the lake is closely associated with the legendary warrior of Mahabharat, Arjun. It is said to believe that Arjun shot an arrow in to the Mansar and a spring gushed of the earth and now it is known as Surinsar Lake.
• The lake supports CITES and IUCN Redlisted Lissemys punctata, Aspideretes gangeticus, and Mansariella lacustris
• This composite lake is high in micro nutrients for which it is an attractive habitat, breeding and nursery ground for migratory waterfowls like Fulica atra, Gallinula chloropus, Podiceps nigricollis, Aythya fuligula, and various Anas species.
Mountains have a special geographical importance to the State of Jammu and Kashmir. Kashmir valley is enclosed by high mountain-chains on all sides except
for certain passes and a narrow gorge at Baramulla. There are Siwalik hills towards the south and very lofty mountains in the north, the peaks of which always remain covered with snow. There are volcanic mountains too in the State. They have caused havoc in Kashmir in the past.
Some of the famous mountains are
KARAKORAM (8615.17 M) AND KYUNLUN RANGES:
▪ Both these mountains lie to the north and north-east of the State and separate it from Russian Turkistan and Tibet.
▪ In the north west, Hindukush range continues towards Karakoram range, where K2 peak, the second highest peak of the world, is situated.
▪ It is about 600 metres above sea level and separates Indus Valley from the valley of Kashmir; it prevents south west cold winds from reaching Kashmir.
▪ Ladakh region terminates at Zojila pass (3529 metres) from where begins the valley of Kashmir. Poat pass (5716 metres) of this range is also a famous pass in this range.
NUN KUN RANGE:
▪ It lies between Ladakh and kashmir border. It is 7055.1 metres above sealevel. To its south-east is situated Kulu and to its north-west is situated Kargil tehsil of Ladakh.
▪ One has to pass through Bawalocha pass (4891 metres) to reach Leh (Ladakh) from Kulu. In 1947, when Kargil was attacked by Pakistan, Indianforces, arms and ammunition were sent to Ladakh by the Indian Union through this pass.
NANGA PARBAT RANGE:
▪ This range spreads in Gilgit. Its height is 8107.68 metres above sea level and is utterly devoid of vegetation. It was conquered by the Italian mountaineers in 1954.
▪ This is now under the unlawful possession of Pakistan.
HARMUKH MOUNTAIN :
▪ This is a range of the Himalayas and is situated at a height of 5141.3 metres above sea level towards Bandipore between the rivers Jhelumand Kishan Ganga valley.
BURZIL MOUNTAIN :
▪ It bifurcates Kashmir and Ladakh on which Burzil pass is situated at aheight of 3200 metres above sea level.
AMARNATH MOUNTAIN :
▪ This is famous for its holy Amarnath Cave, at a height of 5372 metresabove sea level, which thousands of pilgrims visit every year onRakshabandan.
▪ They have to pass Mahagunas pass (1475 metres) on their way to ShriAmarnathji. Gwasharan (5450 metres) is situated in the Lidar valley towards Pahalgam; on it lies the famous glacier Kolahi.
▪ Sheeshnag Mountain also spreads in this valley. It is called Sheshnag, its peaks resemble the heads of seven big snakes.
▪ Toshmaindan (4270 metres) and Kajinag (3700 metres) mountains lie in the Inner Himalayas.
▪ They remain clad with snow throughout the year, but during summer when the snow melts, the water flows down into the Jhelum river.
▪ This mountain spreads through the Gulmarg valley. The famous spring Alpathar lies on its peak, from which Nullah Nagal comes out and flows down into the Wullar lake.
▪ It separates Kashmir valley from the outer Himalayas and is about 2621 Kms. in length and 50 Kms. in breadth. Famous Banihal pass (2832 metres) lies in the shape of a tunnel on its peak; it remains covered with snow during winter making it impassable.
▪ Now at a height of 2200 metres above sea level a new tunnel JawaharTunnel’ has been constructed.
▪ The tunnel is 2825 metres long and it was opened for traffic on 22nd Dec.1956. On the other end of this range lie Baramula pass (1582 metres) andHajipir pass(2750 metres). Hajipir joins Poonch and Uri.
▪ During 1965 Indo Pak war, the Indian army had occupied this pass. Later on it was handed over to Pakistan.
▪ The Sivalik Hills is a mountain range of the outer Himalayas also known as Manak Parbat in ancient times ▪ Runs for a distance of 2,400 km from the Potwar Plateau to the Brahmaputra valley.
▪ These hills extend from the north of the outer plains to middle mountains of the State reaching heights varying from 600 metres to1500 metres above sea level.
▪ The Shivalik Group is more recent and was formed in the period 15 million years to about 800,000 years ago. Rocks were formed out of the eroded rock material that was deposited into the lake like basin created by the Indian plate striking against the Tibetan plateau. There were differences in the type of material deposited over the geological ages leading to the Shivalik Group rocks being divided into 3 sub-groups: a) The Lower Shivalik Group – The sedimentary rocks in this formation are characterized by the grey sandstone, siltstone and red mudstone. The sandstone is hard and resistant to erosion. b) The Middle Shivalik Group- It includes sandstone of coarser material and grey-black mudstone and medium grained bright grey sandstone. c) The Upper Shivalik Group – The group consists of pebbles, cobbles and boulders
• Trikuta Parvat is a sacred place in Katra and is visited by Hindu devotees who come for Mata Vaishno Devi Yatra. • There are three hills and this why it is also called Trikutachal, Tri stands for three. • During the Shravan month (July-August), a large number of Lord Shiva devotees visit Trikuta Parvat to collect wood apples (bel) since the region is rich in the fruit and is also called Garden of Shiva. • There’s also a Shiva Temple on Trikuta Parvat called Trikutachal Mahadev Temple. In this temple, even Goddess Trishuli is also worshipped. The temple is also place from where River Mayurkashi also originates.