Ancient nations all over the globe have maintained their valuable and historical monuments are the rich legacy of the nation inherited from ancient times. Perhaps Great Britain, Russia and some European countries are ahead of the rest of the world in maintaining their heritage icons. It gives pride and honour to the people to have these monuments preserved and protected over generations and come down to them as part of their history.
Kashmir has a long history and a close study shows that it has gone through phases of prosperity as well as adversity. In A.D. 1586, Mughal Emperor Akbar’s army commanded by Raja Man Singh conquered Kashmir and annexed it to the Mughal Empire. Mughal Governors were appointed to function as the head of Government and were responsible to the Royal Court in Delhi. The first Mughal Emperor to visit Kashmir was Jahangir. He was gifted with a sense of love for nature and it is he and then his son Shahjahan who ordered laying of world famous Mughal Gardens of Kashmir namely Shalimar, Nishat, Chashma Shahi and Acchhabal. The first three gardens are located on the foothill of Zabarwan around the Dal Lake and the fourth one is in District Anantnag. These gardens are of prime attraction to the tourists all over the world. The great peculiarity about these is that they stand at the foothill of beautiful Zabarvan Mountain out looking at the spacious Dal Lake with the hillocks of Sharika Parbat and Shankaracharya in the far sight in their stately grandeur. This combination the best in the nature is rarely found anywhere. One must appreciate the intelligence, vision, tastes and skills of the engineers of the Mughal Court who laid the plan of these gardens.
We highly appreciate Government’s decision to declare these gardens as Protected Monuments. This declaration protects the gardens for encroachment or tampering of any kind like raising new structures or pulling down the old structures of affecting any change in the existing layout etc. In a sense these become untouchable. It ensures maintaining pristine purity and beauty of these rarest of rare gardens and this is a boon to the tourists and also to the people of the valley.