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  • The Other Kashmir: Society, Culture and Politics in the Karakoram Himalayas

    The Other Kashmir: Society, Culture and Politics in the Karakoram Himalayas
    Publisher: Pentagon Press
    ISBN 978-81-8274-797-5
    Price: ₹. 1495/- Purchase Download E-copy

    Publisher: Pentagon Press
    ISBN: 978-81-8274-797-5
    Price: Rs. 1495 [Download E-Copy]

    About the Book

    The Karakoram Himalayas have unique geo-political and geo-strategic importance as the boundaries of South and Central Asian countries converge here. Abutting the borders of Afghanistan, China, Pakistan and India and being situated in close proximity to Central Asia, the Karakoram-Himalayan region has been an important constituent of India's trans-Himalayan communication network in the continent and beyond. This region is the cradle from where ancient Indian culture including Buddhism spread to different directions in Central Asia, East Asia and South East Asia. The Karakoram-Himalayan region, what has also been called 'Northern Areas' of the erstwhile  State of Jammu and Kashmir-comprising Hunza, Nagar, Gilgit, Baltistan, Yasin, Astore, Chilas, Koh-Ghizar , Gupis , Punial and Ishkoman - is the single largest territorial unit of the State. This area constitutes about two-thirds of the total area of 84,471 sq. miles of the entire Jammu and Kashmir State. 

    The region displays a wide diversity of cultural patterns, languages, ethnic identities and religious practices. The entire region has been a melting pot of different cultures and faiths – Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam. Whereas a variety of languages – Ladakhi, Balti, Shina, Burushaski, Gojali, Khowar etc. exist in the region, the cross-border linkages between various ethnic-religious groups turn this frontier into a complex vortex of geopolitics. The induction and settlement of Punjabis, Pakhtoons and the Taliban cadres by Pakistan as its calculated policy to colonise the Shia/Ismaili dominated region has not only changed its demographic balance but also led to the rise of sectarianism and religious extremism often leading to violence and conflict. At the same time, the region has been witnessing a new urge for revival of its indigenous languages, cultural heritage and social practices. The social and political aspirations of different indigenous ethnic-religious groups in Karakoram-Himalayas have remained suppressed due to the geopolitical and religious factors. 

    Whereas Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir has been the focus of national and  international attention during the past six decades or so, Gilgit-Baltistan region has eluded attention. This is mainly because this frontier area has been put under iron curtain by the successive Pakistani governments. It is against this background that this book deals with the historical,  cultural, geopolitical, strategic, socio-economic and political perspectives on the entire Karakoram-Himalayan region. That the book is based on the papers contributed by area specialists and experts from the region-Gilgit-Baltistan, Mirpur-Muzaffarabad and Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir besides well known academics and strategic analysts, makes it  special.

    About the Editor

    Born in Srinagar (Kashmir) in 1951 and educated at S.P.College and Kashmir University,  Dr. K. Warikoo is Professor of Central Asian Studies, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He is an eminent educationist, author and scholar, who has been teaching for over 27 years at the Central Asian Studies Programme, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Internationally known for his distinguished service to Himalayan, Central Asian, Eurasian and Silk Route Studies, Prof. Warikoo has published 18 books, most of them of pioneering nature. These include  Central Asia and South Asia: Energy Cooperation and Transport Linkages; Himalayan Frontiers of India (UK, US, Canada, Routledge, 2009); Religion and Security in South and Central Asia (UK, US, Canada, Routledge, 2011); Cultural Heritage of Kashmiri Pandits; Cultural Heritage of Jammu and Kashmir; Afghanistan: Challenges and Opportunities; Bamiyan: Challenge to World Heritage; Central Asia: Emerging New Order; Central Asia and Kashmir: A Study in the Context of Anglo-Russian Rivalry. He is the Founder Editor of Himalayan and Central Asian Studies, a quarterly journal being published regularly and uninterruptedly since 1997, devoted to the study of various issues pertaining to the Himalayan and Trans-Himalayan region in South and Central Asia. He has supervised over 27 Ph.D and 50 M.Phil research scholars, thus inspiring, guiding and training the young generation in the field of Himalayan and Central Asian studies. Prof. Warikoo has conducted intensive field studies in Tajikistan (including Tajik-Afghan border), Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Siberia, Xinjiang (including Kazakh-Xinjiang border), Tibet and  Mongolia,



    List of Maps and Photographs

    1. Rock Art of Gilgit-Baltistan
    -- Muhammad Arif
    2. Karakoram Himalayas and Central Asia: The Buddhist Connection
    -- K. Warikoo
    3. Sharda: History and Importance
    -- Ayaz Rasool Nazki
    4. Language, Culture and Heritage of Mirpur
    -- Muhammad Rafiq Bhatti
    5. Political Dynamics of Culture and Identity in Baltistan
    -- Senge H. Sering
    6. The Making of a Frontier: The Relationship between Kashmir and its Frontier Territories
    -- K. Warikoo
    7. Geo-Strategic Importance of Gilgit-Baltistan
    -- K. Warikoo
    8. The Karakoram-Himalayan Region: Geopolitical Perspective
    -- Afsir Karim
    9. Political and Democratic Process in Gilgit-Baltistan
    -- Paul Beersmans
    10. Gilgit-Baltistan of Jammu and Kashmir in Constitutional Limbo
    -- Senge H. Sering
    11. Role of Political Parties in Pakistan Administered Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan
    -- Shaukat Kashmiri
    12. Demography and Discontent: Crisis of Modernity and Displacement in Undivided Jammu and Kashmir
    -- Praveen Swami
    13. Hydropower Exploitation in Gilgit-Baltistan and Pakistani Administered Kashmir
    -- Shabir Choudhry
    14. Bhasha Dam Project: Geographical, Historical and Political Perspectives
    -- Safdar Ali
    15. Political Unrest in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK): A View from the Pak Press
    -- Priyanka Singh
    16. Religious Extremism in NWFP, Swat and Chitral: Impact on Gilgit-Baltistan
    -- Manzoor Hussain Parwana
    17. Human Rights Situation in Pakistan Administered Kashmir
    -- Nasir Aziz Khan
    18. Sectarian Conflict in Gilgit-Baltistan
    -- Alok Bansal
    19. Pakistan Occupied Kashmir: An Emerging Epicentre of Global Jihad
    -- Wilson John





    Prof. K. Warikoo is Professor of Central Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.
    Mohammad Arif is former Deputy Director, Northern Circle of Archeology, Lahore, Pakistan.
    Dr. Ayaz Rasool Nazki is Director, ICCR Cultural Centre, Srinagar, Kashmir.
    Prof. Mohammad Rafiq Bhatti is Principal, Shah-e-Hamadan College of Business Administration & Commerce, Mirpur.
    Senge Sering, a young academic and cultural activist from Baltistan, has worked with Aga Khan Development Programme in the region. He is currently President, Institute for Gilgit-Baltistan Studies,Washington.
    Major General (Retd.) Afsir Karim is a well known defence analyst and Editor of AAKROSH, the quarterly journal on terrorism and international conflicts.
    Paul Beersmans is President, Belgian Association for Solidarity with Jammu and Kashmir, Belgium.
    Shaukat Kashmiri is Chairman, United Kashmir People’s National Party.
    Praveen Swami is The Hindu’s Strategic Affairs editor, and Resident Editorof its New Delhi edition.
    Dr. Shabir Choudhry is Director, Institute of Kashmir Affairs, London.
    Safdar Ali of Gilgit is Spokesman, Balawaristan National Front.
    Dr. Priyanka Singh is Associate Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi.
    Manzoor Hussain Parwana is Chairman, Gilgit-Baltistan United Movement, Skardu, Baltistan.
    Nasir Aziz Khan is Spokesperson, United Kashmir People’s National Party.
    Alok Bansal is Senior Fellow, the Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS), New Delhi.
    Wilson John is Senior Fellow, Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi.

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