by Dr. Venugopal Menon


This was a state of India from 1954 to 2019, constituting the southern and south-eastern portions of the larger Kashmir region, which has been the subject of disputes between India, Pakistan, and China since the mid-20th century. The underlying regions of this state were parts of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir, whose western districts, now known as Azad Kashmir, and northern territories, now known as Gilgit-Baltistan, are administered by Pakistan. The Aksai Chin region in the east, bordering Tibet, has been under Chinese control since 1962. After the Government of India repealed the special status accorded to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Indian constitution in 2019, the Parliament of India passed the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, which contained provisions that dissolved the state and reorganized it into two union territories – Jammu and Kashmir in the west and Ladakh in the east, with effect from 31 October 2019. At the time of its dissolution, Jammu and Kashmir was the only state in India with a Muslim-majority population.

Kashmir is known as the paradise on Earth and rightly so. It has its charm in the enchanting valley views and green nature, but its festivals add an extra flavor to the beauty of the state. People try to forget all the communal tensions that exist and celebrate the festivities together in peace. This exquisitely defines the beauty of this holy land.

In India, festivals are celebrated more than in any other country in the world. And every festival is celebrated with great zeal and zest, fancy feasting, and incredible merry-making. Every religion has its hundred festivals and every state another hundred which makes this land holy, sacred, and culturally rich.


Bahu Mela:

Bahu Mela is one of the best Hindu festivals of Jammu; it is an astounding celebration held in the Bahu Fort of the region. The mela is stacked with fun, skip, and jubilance, with lights embellishing the whole place, illuminating the entire atmosphere. One can witness the marvellous traditions of the community of Jammu, from the way they dress up, to partaking in the tasty food present all through this celebration. This mela is a great opportunity to witness the vitality with which festivities are welcomed in Jammu. All participants wear their most splendid gatherings, and occupants exchange favors as a sign of worship and warmth towards one another.



(February) Eid Ul Fitr is celebrated on the last day of a month-long fasting in Ramzan or Ramadan. Namaz is offered six times on this day and fast is broken with feasting. Exchange of sweets and wearing new clothes, meeting relatives, and sharing wishes complete this peaceful festival. Eid ul Azha or Bakra Eid is celebrated in the second half of the year when a goat, camel, or sheep is sacrificed in every Muslim Household. It takes its origin from their principle of Kurbani or Sacrifice. The Urs or Ziarats is an important festival in Kashmir which witnesses participation from Muslims, Hindus, and Sikhs. It is a huge inter-communal celebration and is celebrated many times in a year.

This festival is celebrated on the death anniversaries of eminent Muslim saints like Meesha Sahib, Batamol Sahib, and Bahauddin. Often bad weather is faced on the day of Urs celebrations, despite which a huge celebration is marked by people from all religions.


Tulip Festival:


With hundreds of Tulip Gardens in all of Kashmir, the state flourishes with Tulips during the spring season. With the largest Tulip Garden in Asia in its bounty, Srinagar plays host to the great Tulip Festival every year. The festival boasts of the variety of Tulips garnered here. During the springs, the sight of the tulips in any of these gardens is a sight to behold, undoubtedly a mesmerizing and breath-taking sight, especially for a non-Kashmiri.

Tulip Festival takes place at the Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden in Srinagar, Kashmir. The festival features a showcase of local handicrafts, luscious cuisine, cultural programs, and of course, Tulips!