Regarded by the Mughals as 'the earthly paradise', Kashmir has held a particular fascination for many. Since time immemorial, tourists as well as pilgrims belonging to different regions have been attracted to this land of scenic splendour, bracing climate and sacred shrines. The present book is about this land and its handsome people noted for their tolerance, intelligence, industry and skill. It describes Kashmir's rich contribution to the fabric of Indian life -its art, literature and culture.
Somnath Dhar, after serving on the staff of S.P. College, Srinagar, worked with the Ministry of External Affairs, in New Delhi and abroad. He is the author of Kashmir: Eden of the East, Kashmir in Stories, Folk-tales of Kashmir, Tales of Kashmir, Folk-Tales of Turkey, and Kalhana. His book, Historical Tales of Kashmir (1984) was followed by Nepal: Land of Gods, Goddesses and Demons, which he co-authored with his wife, Asha (1985). Jammu and Kashmir Folklore (1986) won him two awards, one in 1988 and the other in 1989. as a historian and folklorist, he has presented papers at national and international conferences.
A book on Jammu and Kashmir state, covering a wide
ground, ranging from ancient history to cultural heritage,
arts and folklore, is always welcome. Harving already run
into two editions -1977 and 1991-and now being printed
for the third time displays the popularity of the subject as
well as the engaging style in which it has been written by
Prof. Somnath Dhar. He has to his credit eleven books on
Kashmir, besides this volume which has appeared under
India-the Land and the People series of the National Book
Trust. This book should continue to appeal to all those
interested in the Elysian Vale, the fabled Jammu region and
the mysterious land of Ladakh. I appreciate the hard,
sustained work that has gone into this volume in updating
the facts and figures, as far as possible.
I have great pleasure in writing a foreword to this
revised edition, and commend it to interested readers as
well as visitors to Kashmir.
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