On 5 August, two major decisions were taken regarding the State of Jammu and Kashmir. The first was that parts of Article 370, which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir, were turned defunct with immediate effect. The second was regarding the reorganisation of the state. Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh would be two separate union territories, beginning 31 October. Jammu and Kashmir got Girish Chandra Moormoo and Ladakh got RK Mathur as lieutenant governors. And with the implementation of this decision, apart from Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, many things have changed in the politics of the country. That includes the new political map of the country.
After making Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh two Union Territories, the government released a new map of the country on 2 November. The new map shows 28 States and nine Union Territories. The Survey General of India has released this map.
Showing Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Aksai Chin as part of India is nothing new. The Indian map has never recognised the administrative control of these regions by Pakistan and China respectively. The new map of the Jammu & Kashmir Union Territory but specifies 20 districts, including the three PoK districts of Muzaffarabad, Panch and Mirpur. Ladakh consists of two districts Kargil and Leh. These specifications of districts used to be absent in the old map.
In 1947, there were 14 districts in the State of Jammu and Kashmir. These included Kathua, Jammu, Udhampur, Reasi, Anantnag, Baramulla, Poonch, Mirpur, Muzaffarabad, Leh and Ladakh, Gilgit, Gilgit Vajrat, Chilhas and the tribal areas. By 2019, the State government of Jammu and Kashmir reorganised the 14 districts into 28 districts. In Kupwara, Bandipur, Srinagar, Budgam, Pulwama, Shopian, Kulgam, Rajouri, Ramban, Doda, Kishtwar, Samba, and Kargil, new districts were created.
But when the State of Jammu and Kashmir was divided into two parts on 5 August, the map changed once again. And now two new Union Territories are added to this map. In all, 22 districts have been included in Jammu and Kashmir. These are Kathua, Jammu, Samba, Udhampur, Doda, Kishtwar, Rajouri, Reasi, Ramban, Poonch, Kulgam, Shopian, Srinagar, Anantnag Budgan, Pulwama, Ganderbal, Bandipora, Baramulla, Kupwara, Mirpur and Muzaffarabad.
Apart from this, two districts of Kargil and Leh have been created in the Union Territory of Ladakh. The map of Leh shows the Pakistan-occupied area of Gilgit-Baltistan. This means that the Leh district includes Gilgit, Gilgit Wazarat, Chilhas, and the Tribal Territory currently in Pakistan’s possession and Aksai Chin given by Pakistan to China.
Both Pakistan and China have expectedly rejected the new Indian map as much as they used to dismiss the older one.