Often this question comes up, where is Kashmir. How big is it?
It’s quite big.
Kashmir as a country
Its size measures about to 222,236 square kilometres. If United Kashmir was a country, it would be larger than at least 168 countries in the world. Its current size puts it at the 86th number.
And would have more population that would make it the 64th most populous country in the world. Bigger than Ecuador or Rwanda or even Portugal.
(Population of a United Kashmir right now would be, Azad Kashmir is 4 million as of the last census in Pakistan, add to that Indian-occupied Kashmir at 14.283 million = combined population of a United Kashmir would be 18.283 million)
Just for a perspective. It’s almost as big as the United Kingdom. It is three times the size of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxumberg combined. It would be the 86th largest country in the world bigger than Guyana or Ireland for that matter.
It’s larger than the combination of the following countries: Antigua and Barbados; Bahamas; Bahrain; Barbados; Brunei Darussalam; Cape Verde; Comoros; Cyprus; Dominica; Gambia; Grenada; Holy See; Jamaica; Kosovo; Lebanon; Luxemburg; Maldives; Malta; Mauritius; Micronesia; Monaco; Montenegro; Qatar; Saint Kitts &Nevis; Saint Lucas; Saint Vincent & the Grenadines; Samoa; San Marino; Sao Tome and Principe; Seychelles; Singapore; Tonga; Trinidad and Tobago; Tuvalu; and Vanuatu.
Here’s an interesting comparison by the Economist, although it doesn’t include Azad Kashmir territory.
The maps of Kashmir
Kashmir has kept cartographers of both India and Pakistan busy.
Here’s the map of Kashmir and Jammu when it was a British protectorate in 1912
Here’s the official map of Pakistan
Here’s what the Indians have to show on Kashmir
First of all, the map on Jammu Kashmir is restricted. One has to fill a form etc to just get a map of the region.
But a deeper search lands us to the Map of India on the website of the Indian Embassy in Chile.
But what does the United Nations have to say about the map of Jammu Kashmir
This is an important question, as it is the UN maps that are recognised by international law.
So, on the UN geospatial website, we find out not only they have different map for Jammu Kashmir. But there’s actually Jammu Kashmir area in the country’s section. How about that!
We go to the general map of South Asia. We find
We go to the Jammu Kashmir Area map, and we find
And the United Nations Military Observers Group in India and Pakistan has another map of Jammu and Kashmir.
While Google, Facebook and other online platforms have varied maps of Jammu Kashmir. A Google India Map will show Jammu Kashmir, part of the Indian territory, while it doesn’t show the same when it comes to Google Maps in other parts of the world.
Basically we can only say one thing, like the political status of Jammu Kashmir is disputed internationally. So are its maps.