On the 24th of October, the freed area of Azad Jammu & Kashmir celebrates Azad Kashmir Day with national enthusiasm and traditional zest. Every year on this day, the establishment of the 1st revolutionary government, led by ‘Ghazi-e-Millat’ Sardar Mohammad Ibraheem Khan, is commemorated. This day is also known as Youm-e-Tasees of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. This magnificent valley, heaven on Earth with breathtaking sights and sounds has a history of continuous struggle against tyranny. The region was a princely state administered first by the British East India Company and then by the British Raj. Special tribute is also paid to all the heroes of this era who laid their lives to support and uphold the cause of independence and freedom. The region called the state of Azad Jammu & Kashmir, which covers about 5000 sq. mi out of a total area of 84471 sq. mi.
At the conclusion of British rule, British India was divided into two newly independent countries: India and Pakistan. Princely states were given the choice which one of the counties to join. However, Hari SinghMaharaja of Jammu and Kashmir was afraid that Jammu and Kashmir would lose its autonomy, so he chose the third option, which was to remain independent. However, Muslims from western provinces wanted to join Pakistan and rebelled against the Maharaja. They took control of the region and proclaimed a provisional government of Azam Jammu and Kashmir (literally translated as “Free Jammu and Kashmir”) on October 3, 1947.
This government quickly failed, but on October 21, several thousand armed rebels overpowered the Maharaja’s forces and captured an even larger territory. On October 24, Muhammad Ibrahim Khan, known as the “Father of Azad Kashmir”, established the second provisional government of Azad Jammu and Kashmir
Kashmir is an integral part of Pakistan’s foreign policy and military policy. Kashmir is a majority disputed area between India and Pakistan. The Kashmiri people have been brutally oppressed, denied democracy and self-determination, and suffered two wars and many military mobilizations. Today a million troops face each other across the Indo-Pakistan border. Pakistan’s Federal Government manages it. The people of the freed territory have seen remarkable progress in practically every sphere of life during the last seventy-one years.Over the decades, the armed conflict between the Indian and Pakistani regimes led to open war in 1947, 1965 and 1971. This embedded the issue of Kashmir into the core of the ideology and strategy of both ruling classes in their approach to politics. In 1947, Quaid-e-Azam Muhammed Ali Jinnah, explained to Louis Mountbatten, British viceroy in India before independence, that the K in Pakistan stood for Kashmir.
Azad Kashmir day is celebrated to highlight Pakistan’s right to the territory. In addition, Pakistan also celebrates Kashmir Solidarity Day, also known as simply Kashmir Day, on February 5. It is a public holiday that was established in 1990 to express solidarity with the India-occupied (as the Pakistani government perceives it) part of Kashmir.