How old is this fight?
Kashmir is an ethnically diverse Himalayan region, covering around 86,000 sq miles (138 sq km), and famed for the beauty of its lakes, meadows and snow-capped mountains.
Even before India and Pakistan won their independence from Britain in August 1947, the area was hotly contested.
Under the partition plan provided by the Indian Independence Act, Kashmir was free to accede to either India or Pakistan.
The maharaja (local ruler), Hari Singh, initially wanted Kashmir to become independent – but in October 1947 chose to join India, in return for its help against an invasion of tribesmen from Pakistan.
A war erupted and India approached the United Nations asking it to intervene. The United Nations recommended holding a plebiscite to settle the question of whether the state would join India or Pakistan. However the two countries could not agree to a deal to demilitarise the region before the referendum could be held.
In July 1949, India and Pakistan signed an agreement to establish a ceasefire line as recommended by the UN and the region became divided.
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