JAMMU AND KASHMIR
Jammu and Kashmir is the northernmost state of India. Situated mostly in the Himalayan mountains, Jammu and Kashmir shares a border with the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh and Punjab to the south, Pakistan-administered Kashmir to the west and the People’s Republic of China to the north and east.
Jammu and Kashmir consists of three divisions: Jammu, the Kashmir valley and Ladakh. Srinagar is the summer capital, and Jammu its winter capital.
The state of Jammu and Kashmir has historically consisted of four political regions. Ladakh towards the east bordering China, Jammu towards the south bordering India and Pakistan, Kashmir Valley towards the east bordering Pakistan and Baltistan areas towards the North bordering China and Pakistan. Baltistan and a part of Kashmir Valley are under Pakistan control. Aksai Chin, claimed by India to be a part of Ladakh, is under Chinese control. While the rest is under Indian control. Pakistan and Indian controlled parts are separated by Line of Control (LOC).
Jammu and Kashmir is home to several valleys such as the Kashmir Valley, Tawi Valley, Chenab Valley, Poonch Valley, Sind Valley and Lidder Valley. The main Kashmir valley is 100 km wide and 15,520.3 km² in area. The Himalayas divide the Kashmir valley from Ladakh while the Pir Panjal range, which encloses the Valley from the west and the south, separates it from the Great Plains of northern India. Along the northeastern flank of the Valley runs the main range of the Himalayas. This densely settled and beautiful valley has an average height of 1,850 meters above sea-level but the surrounding Pir Panjal range has an average elevation of 5,000 meters.
The Jhelum River is the only major Himalayan river which flows through the Kashmir valley. The Indus, Tawi, Ravi and Chenab are the major rivers flowing through the state. Jammu and Kashmir is home to several Himalayan glaciers. With an average altitude of 5753 meters above sea-level, the Siachen Glacier is 70 km long making it the longest Himalayan glacier.
Coal, Gypsum and Limestone are the important mineral produced in the State. Coal occurs in Poonch, Rajauri and Udhampur districts; gypsum in Baramula, Kathua, Leh, Poonch, Pulwama, Rajauri, Srinagar and Udhampur districts, and Magnesite in Leh and Udhampur districts.
Other minerals that occur in the state are bauxite, ball clay, and china clay in Udhampur district; bentonite in Jammu district; borax and sulphur in Leh district; diaspore in Rajauri and Udhampur districts; graphite in Baramula district; lignite and marble in Kupwara district; quartz and silica sand in Anantnag district; and sapphire in Doda district.