We thank the following contributors for sharing this information:  J & K Governent Industries Dept., Special Task Force Officer Akbar, and the local district Kishwari miners.  This information cannot be copied without the prior consent of KashmirBlue .
 
(To left: Arial Photo of peaks Nun & Kun; Zanskar Range, Kashmir)

The jewel in India's crown lies at latitude 33° 25' 30"N and longitude 76° 23' 15"E.

The glory days of Kashmir sapphire was a 100 years ago.  Original accounts by Edward Streeter and Albert Ramsey are finest reports published.

The economic policies of the local government and political
conflict prevent further exploration.  Every year since 2002, the J&K Minerals department publicizes a global tender.  The Indian gemstone & jewelery trade feel this is simply a "Kashmir" promotion lacking commitment.

The local government did not visit the mining area from 1998 to 1998.  The intensity of fighting was the greatest.  The J&K Minerals Ltd. with direct A.M.B. visited the mines in 1998.  The team learned that local smugglers had taken advantage of the mines. Original tunnels had been damaged and tools abandoned.

The directors team of miners and geologist cleaned the debris and surveyed the area.  Police towers were placed in key access points with soldiers ordered to "shoot to kill" any suspicious people.   A fair weather vehicular road was built to the town of Atholi.  This road shortened the walking distance to less than 6 days. Lastly, they purchased IKONOS satellite imagery of the ridge which is slightly better than Google Earth.  The final step would be to mechanize the operation and begin digging the mountain.

The minerals department has one operable drill with compressor and a small team to work.  The weather permits about 60-70 days of mining activity per year.  The State Treasury claimed a deposit of two kilograms between 1998 and 2002, but more in later years.  Although very little is facet grade.  Seventeen kilograms were sold at auction a few years ago.  The quality was mixed. A few nice, but small size stones, were sold.

The mining department is currently attempting to access the vein from several locations on the ridge approximately 100 meters apart.  They are connecting the different tunnels.  Cap Beesley, the former President of AGL company in NY created confusion by labeling stones as "'Classic Kashmir" and or "New Kashmir.  Kashmir has only one sapphire mine.  The Kashmir sapphire mine is above the village of Soomjam.  The mine, like every deposit in the world, produces a range of quality from more commercial to the world's finest gems.