Remembering the 1971 war

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Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 04 Dec 2010 07:43

39 years ago - the India Pakistan "hot, declared war" was just over 8 hours old - as I type this.

For months - as a schoolboy I had read the papers with a mixture of anxiety and excitement about the developments in East Pakistan. I did not understand the politics but knew that people were being killed in Eat Pakistan and that millions of refugees were pouring into India and that Pakistan was making very belligerent noises. For months papers and magazines had been running comparisons of the relative strengths of the Indian and Pakistani armed forces. A few F-86 Sabres had been shot down in the East, over West Bengal. My ISCE English final exam essay was written by me based on a theme of Pakistani spies torturing an Indian scientist - rescued by me and my dog -in a Famous Five style adventure. War clouds were in the air.

My ISCE exams got over a few days before the war. Blackouts were already in place. On the 3rd of December - on a clear night Pakistani planes attacked a whole lot of Indian targets. I heard a radio in my mother's room, got out of bed and tiptoed through the darkened and went to listen. My father was out on special "night duty" in a factory that was producing antibiotics at double speed to stock up for war. Indira Gandhi was making her declaration of war speech. Even before the speech was over - the radio was drowned out by the roar of MiG 21s taking off from Lohegaon heading for Mumbai where there had been an air raid alert. it turned out to be a false alarm.

A few days into the war - we travelled on a blacked-out train to Bangalore for my post-exam holidays. I followed most of the war from Bangalore - in the same house as the mother of my cousin - then Flt. Lt Kukke Suresh who was out fighting in the war. The radio and papers had a lot of reports about the East - "Jalna" and "Khulna' were names that stuck to my mind and the "Padma river", Chittagong harbor. The Ghazi made news as did the Vikrant. I recall reading about amphibious PT-76 tanks fording rivers in East Pakistan and saw photos of the Mukti Bahini using 7.62 mm Ishapore rifles - which were then commonplace with the Indian army - replacing the 303s. Not much news from the west that I can recall. Some familiar names from 19565 were coming back particulrly about tank battles in which Arun Khetarpal was killed. Longewala was not known till after the war.

Pn the 11th or 12th December 1971 I excitedly saw a news item saying that a Flt Lt Suresh had shot down a F-86 Sabre. But I was puzzled because only the year before - in 1970 I had spent a glorious week in Hindon watching planes and movies (Mera Naam Joker) with Suresh and thought he had been flying MiG 21s. But an uncle of mine confirmed that he was flying Hunters. Unfortunately there was no TV over most of India those days and only now in the days of YouTube have I seen many of the TV reports.

Let me put the links that commemorate the war:

Liberation Times
http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/1971/

http://www.subcontinent.com/1971war/1971war.html

Videos:
Liberation of Bangladesh 1/2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQGP0LK80-4


Liberation of Bangladesh 2/2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UORh9__W2Y


Western Front 1/2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4ImboEeYrk



Western Front 2/2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2EtAltIBqQ


Indian Navy East
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mj30oQuTBDU


Indian navy West
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZzNCePxoxp4


Longewala story
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fy3XLnWsok


Please add links and videos. And memories, if any.
Last edited by shiv on 05 Dec 2010 06:47, edited 2 times in total.

shiv
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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 04 Dec 2010 08:10

Jagan's video - IAF attack on Tezgaon
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TR9bmQ-DfrY
God knows why it has been flagged. The one below, however - about the massacres is truly distressing


Pakistan army massacres in Bangladesh
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0x-94U1bVUQ

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 04 Dec 2010 08:19


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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Pratyush » 04 Dec 2010 12:19

If there ever a just war in modern times. This was it. A people under brutal occupation under genocidal regime. Were set free by the courage & sacrifice of the Indian Armed forces to chart there own future as a result of this war.

That two of the most powerful militaries were unable to stop the actions and march of the Indian armed forces as they marched on the capital of what would become an independent Bangladesh is an icing on the cake.

It restored the honor of the Indian armed forces in the eyes of the world after the loss at the hands of the PLA in 62. Established in unambiguous terms that India will not be coerced by any combination of power's arrayed against it when it choses to act in the preservation of it vital national interests.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 04 Dec 2010 14:12

Pratyush wrote:If there ever a just war in modern times. This was it. A people under brutal occupation under genocidal regime. Were set free by the courage & sacrifice of the Indian Armed forces to chart there own future as a result of this war.

That two of the most powerful militaries were unable to stop the actions and march of the Indian armed forces as they marched on the capital of what would become an independent Bangladesh is an icing on the cake.

It restored the honor of the Indian armed forces in the eyes of the world after the loss at the hands of the PLA in 62. Established in unambiguous terms that India will not be coerced by any combination of power's arrayed against it when it choses to act in the preservation of it vital national interests.


Thanks for jogging this memory. Here is a related news item that gets forgotten
http://www.rediff.com/news/2005/jun/30nixon.htm
US encouraged China to attack India: Nixon tapes
June 30, 2005 09:15 IST

President Richard Nixon and his National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger encouraged China to move militarily against India during the 1971 Indo-Pak War, and guaranteed that the US would support Beijing in the event of Soviet retaliation.

Nixon and Kissinger saw India as a 'Soviet stooge', and downplayed reports of Pakistani genocide in what was then East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). While US consular officials in Dacca, East Pakistan's capital, privately criticized the U.S. government's 'failure to denounce atrocities', Nixon and Kissinger did not want 'to get (the) West Pakistanis turned against us (the US)'.

These are merely two of the many revelations regarding the US role in the 1971 South Asia crisis, that has come to light thanks to newly released documentation contained in the State Department's Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) series and reposted Wednesday by the National Security Archive.

The editors of the document made significant use of White House tapes, and transcripts of Henry Kissinger's telephone conversations, besides the usual official cables and memoranda, to piece together the story of that time.

Dr. William Burr, senior analyst at the National Security Archive, says the US did not want to turn Pakistan against Washington at least in part because Yahya Khan, then President of Pakistan, was secretly serving as communications conduit for the US in its quest for rapprochement with China.

The close China-Pakistan relationship was central to Nixon's wish to 'tilt' US policy toward Pakistan, in part to demonstrate to Beijing that Washington would support its allies.

'I think we've got to tell (the Chinese) that some movement on their part … toward the Indian border could be very significant,' Kissinger said, according to the document.


On December 8, 1971, Nixon and Kissinger agreed to transfer planes to Pakistan and to tell China that 'if you are ever going to move, this is the time.' Kissinger noted the danger that could arise 'if our bluff is called.'


The rotten ba$tards.

What really irritates me in this day and age is people whining that we did not do more. The sort of international pressure under which Indira had to act is easily forgotten. Perhaps this explains why the 90,000 prisoners giot away. having concluded the war successfully India was probably not in a position militarily or economically to keep challenging the US that was supporting Pakistan and China against India.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 04 Dec 2010 15:16

Shiv, thanks for the great article,that brought me back to Bangalore, school days,when we listened to the news everyday about successes of the Indian Army,Air Force and Navy. I must admit, as a small boy of 11 yrs, I had no idea what was happening, till mom sent me one evening to sleep in the house of a lady whose husband was later to be awarded a medal. I am unable to recall the exact name, surname was Khullar or Bhullar, perhaps now Sqdron Leader G S Bhullar, I cannot verify.As I spent the evening listening to the radio, the lady was almost in tears, being alone at home, she requested my mother to send me, so she could feel a little at home. I did what a good boy would do, told the lady not to fear, and was rewarded with a glass of milk before bed, and then toast with butter for breakfast, and then I ran away home, after breakfast.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 04 Dec 2010 16:19

I went through all the Videos, amazing memories, and today is 4th December, what coincidence.Here's a link I found http://www.stanislites.org/alumni/conte ... andra-star

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 04 Dec 2010 16:57

sanjeevpunj wrote:I went through all the Videos, amazing memories, and today is 4th December, what coincidence.Here's a link I found http://www.stanislites.org/alumni/conte ... andra-star



Thanks - it turns out that Sunith Soares was one of the pilots who shot down 3 Paki Sabres over West Bengal before the actual declared war. the story exists somewhere on BR I think. Those Paki Sabres were flying the same pattern every day while they intruded over India. An ambush was set of an 3 of 4 were shot down. I believe this was a big morale booster for the entire country.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 04 Dec 2010 17:01

YESSS! Here it is on BR

See this page
http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/Histo ... index.html

And the actual story: I have heard the author's name before :D
http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/Histo ... abres.html
22nd NOVEMBER 1971
JAGAN PILLARISETTI
The four Gnats dived into the attack to bounce the Sabres. The first section of Gnats was of Massey and Fg Offr SF Soarez as his No.2. The second section consisted of Flt Lt MA Ganapathy and Fg Offr D Lazarus. As the Gnats dived in, a section of two Sabres pulled out of the attack and placed themselves in an awkward position, just in front of Ganapathy and Lazarus. Ganapathy called out on the R/T 'Murder Murder Murder' . Both the pilots did not waste time on this perfect opportunity. Cannon shells slammed into the pair of Sabres and both the Sabres were badly damaged. The Pakistani pilots promptly ejected out of the Sabres and drifted down to Boyra by parachute. The wreckage fell near Bongaon village

Massey in the meantime pulled up over Ganapathy and Lazarus to latch onto another Sabre. The Sabre broke into Massey's attack forcing him to take a high angle-off burst. The burst missed the target. Massey took another well aimed burst at 700 yards and hit him in the port wing. By that time, Massey's starboard cannon had stopped firing. But the Sabre streaked back into Pakistani territory trailing smoke and fire. Massey himself realised that he was well over East Pakistani airspace in the chase to hit the Sabre. He then turned around and rendezvouzed with the rest of his formation.




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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Rahul M » 04 Dec 2010 17:47

excellent thread shiv ji. I remember the hours I spend at a stretch after I discovered liberation times, a few years back.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 04 Dec 2010 18:20

The beatles also joined in congratulating India and helping raise money to rebuild Bangladesh, by producing an album "Concert for Bangladesh" http://listeningroom.lohudblogs.com/200 ... -concerts/

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 04 Dec 2010 18:31

Longewala was a well fought battle, and here's a rare picture.Image

The picture is from this link - http://reportmysignal.blogspot.com/2009/10/battle-of-longewala-indo-pak-war-1971.html that has a write up by Col Kulvinder Singh, psc (NRI),Armed Forces Veteran.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 04 Dec 2010 18:36

Image
FIELD MARSHALL SHFJ MANEKSHAW

I am so excited reading this thread, I might be flooding unknowingly. Could not resist posting this image of SAM.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 04 Dec 2010 18:56

Image
It is interesting to know that Tibetans,usually peaceful folks in maroon or orange robes, were part of India's airborne troops that were dropped over BD.
Image
Indian Soldiers, part of SFF (mainly Tibetan origin) on Patrol. The Special Frontier Force (SFF) was created on 14 November 1962, near the end of the Indo-China War. The Cabinet Secretariat had ordered the raising of an elite guerrilla force composed mainly of Tibetan refugees. It's main goal was to conduct covert operations behind Chinese lines in the event of another Indo-China war. The first Inspector General of the SFF was a retired Indian Army Major General who was known for his unconventional thinking. Soon the SFF came to be known as 'Establishment 22' due to its first Inspector General, who used to be commander of 22 Mountain Regiment during World War II.Read more about SFF at http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/LAND-FORCES/SFF.html
Image
The Dalai Lama and Major General Uban, the inspector general of the SFF, review the SFF at Chakrata, June 1972 After the successful operations of the SFF against the Pakistani military in the 1971 war(the Liberation/formation of Bangladesh)

More images in this link - http://www.asiafinest.com/forum/lofiversion/index.php/t245861.html

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Aditya G » 05 Dec 2010 04:34

To all students of the 71 war, please do find a 1971 war atlas produced by a US Army col which has depicted the whole war into one concise PDF.

The victory is sweeter since it was the only 'total war' - in 1965 the navy did not have free hand.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby ramana » 05 Dec 2010 04:51

Link to Col Gill's atlas of 1971 War. Pdf 146 pages.

LINK

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby ramana » 05 Dec 2010 04:53

Indranil Banerjie's Links:

http://www.subcontinent.com/1971war/episodes.html

He used to be a BRF member.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby KJo » 05 Dec 2010 05:30

How has no one posted this? :twisted:

Image

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 05 Dec 2010 06:10

I found an odd, difficult to understand document from a Chinese about the 1971 war. It attracts my interest but I cannot totally decipher it. Does anyone else want to have a go.
http://chinanewsletter.blogspot.com/200 ... anned.html
1971 Indian-Pakistani war, China planned to capture New Delhi

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby ramana » 05 Dec 2010 06:30

Shiv, It needs to be rewritten in understandable English. Will work on it. Meantime request Rajaram to take look at it.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Jagan » 05 Dec 2010 06:36

Some videos from Youtube



clip from youtube showing MIG21s firing rockets over Dacca - and a british journalist describing what happened inside. (I suspect this is Gavin Young of the observer). Check the other clips uploaded by the same user.


Indian troops being welcomed in Dhaka


Niazis Bluster


B/W clip of indian troops in dacca

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Jagan » 05 Dec 2010 06:38

Colour Footage

Before the War

(From Pak Side) Preparations in Dacca for the War - Footage of six Indian soldiers from the Naga Regiment captured before the war. Footage of Razakars

(Warning - Graphic content)[font="Arial Black"][/font]
(From Pak) It is about the early days of fighting in the Comilla sector in East Pakistan. There is some GRAPHIC content on Indian war dead.

During the War

(From India) Coverage of the Chamb Battle front, Tanks, troops, an Mi-4 stnding by to evacuate battle wounded.

After the War


PA POW movement to India (has Brig H S Kler in it)


Gen Manekshaw visits Pak POWs and Indian Troops


This has some coverage of the distasteful incident where Kader Siddiquis men killed some Biharis in front of the press. The second part of the film is about the arms laying down ceremony held after a few days - in which Gen Nagra, Gen Sagat Singh and Brigadier Kler were present . An interview with Brig Baqar Siddiqui - Chief of Staff under Niazi.


Bihari refugees after the war (And Indian troops providing protection to them)


Evacuation of refugees after the war. Aircraft flying into Dacca

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 05 Dec 2010 06:42

Jagan wrote:Some videos from Youtube



clip from youtube showing MIG21s firing rockets over Dacca - and a british journalist describing what happened inside. (I suspect this is Gavin Young of the observer). Check the other clips uploaded by the same user.



The story associated with the above video clip is in BR. Let me quote:
http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/Histo ... Dacca.html
On 14th December I had just returned from a close-support mission in the morning from Mainamati Cantonment when Group Captain Wollen came rushing to our operations room and said, "Bhoop, a very critical and urgent task has come from Air HQ. There is a very important meeting going on at Circuit House, Dacca and this building needs to be attacked at 1120 hrs."

I told him that, first it was already 1055 and it required 21 minutes to be at Dacca and then "Where in God's name is the Circuit House located in Dacca?"

He said, "If you hurry up you can just about make it. Here, I have tourist map of Dacca and here, next to this road crossing is the Circuit House." I looked back at him, the Circuit House was part of a densely populated area of Dacca and from the air one could see hundreds of road crossings, how was one to pick that one? I simply said, "Yes Sir, it shall be done." I borrowed that map from him to be taken along and with this, search for that Circuit House after getting overhead Dacca.

For this mission I was taking four MiG-21s loaded with 32 high explosive rockets each. I was strapped in the cockpit of the aircraft and started the engine, just when I saw one of our Flight Commanders waving a paper and run towards me. "Sir, this is for you." It read, Target is Government House, repeat Government House and not Circuit House. Confirm understood. Best of luck and good shooting. Mall."

I raised my thumb to confirm that I had noted the change. I quickly scanned the tourist map in my lap and located the Government House and taxied out. At this stage I did not inform of the change to the other three members of my team which consisted of Flight Lieutenant Vinod Bhatia, Flight Lieutenant Raghavachari and Flight Lieutenant Malhi as I did not want to announce this on R/T for the whole world to know.

Airborne and as we were approaching Dacca and had barely a minute to go, I gave the new target to my numbers 2, 3 and 4. I described the rough location of the target and asked them to look for it. Flight Lieutenant Bhatia spotted it first, calling that the target was at 11 o'clock, 500 yards away. It was a magnificent old styled palatial building with a high dome, situated in the middle of a lush green compound. There were quite a few vehicles inside the entrance gate.

I did a "chakkar" around it to reconfirm its identity and then ordered the attack taking the building from broad side. I aimed at the room below the dome, others took on other portions. We did two passes each and fired 128 rockets into the Government House.

By the second attack smoke and dust could be seen rising from many locations from the abode the mightiest in East Pakistan. It obviously broke the backbone of the civilian Government. Two days later General Niazi, the Supreme Commander of the Pakistan Military in East Pakistan was to surrender to the Indian Defense Forces along with 93,000 troops.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby VikramS » 05 Dec 2010 10:48

Remembering Kukke Suresh

Found this article on the blog linked earlier in the thread. A lot of details about one of our favorite hero.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby sanjeevpunj » 05 Dec 2010 19:07

Image
Brigadier Sawai Bhawani Singh Bahadur, MVC,(retd), also known as His Highness the Maharaja of Jaipur, commanded 10 Parachute (Special Forces) during the 1971 Indo-Pak War as a Lt. Col. Along side him,were many brave men, including Lt.Col Bhawani Dutt Dogra , already decorated with an MVC(now retd) after China Attack. I personal know Lt.Col Bhawani Dutt Dogra, who is currently recovering after a knee replacement operation at the Research and Refferals Hospital in Gurgaon,New Delhi.The team led by Lt Col Bhawani Dutt Dogra (then 2nd Lt) escorted Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to safety after the 1971 war.The BR link to Brig. Sawai Bhawani Singh is here.http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/HEROISM/Bhavani.html

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby rohitvats » 06 Dec 2010 00:08

sanjeevpunj, the only paradrop which took place in BD that I'm aware of is the drop at Tangail to capture the Poongli Bridge on Jamuna by 2 Para. While SFF was involved in operations in Chittagong tract, AFAIK, it was not involved in any paradrop.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby partha » 06 Dec 2010 01:10

Jagan wrote:Colour Footage

Before the War

(From Pak Side) Preparations in Dacca for the War - Footage of six Indian soldiers from the Naga Regiment captured before the war. Footage of Razakars


Any idea what happened to those 6 soldiers of Naga regiment?

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Victor » 06 Dec 2010 03:38

The defining fact of the war for me was how many of these coward pakis surrendered even though they were fully armed and threatening to fight for "a thousand years". The measure of a coward can be gauged by the loudness of his bombast, the level of his violence on the weak and his response to violence on him. In all of these departments, the pakis showed that there never were greater cowards on earth than them. The have set the standard and continue to live up to it. BTW, I wonder how we arrived at the "90,000 POWs" number? The American TV news link spoke of 100,000 POWs. Some pakis are now frantically trying to fudge the number lower, thinking that somehow 40,000 is better than 90,000 :roll: .

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby SBajwa » 06 Dec 2010 04:26

If there ever a just war in modern times. This was it. A people under brutal occupation under genocidal regime. Were set free by the courage & sacrifice of the Indian Armed forces to chart there own future as a result of this war.



so!! what are we trying to proove here? There is no human morality in inter states politics!! We should have destroy Pakistan and annexed East Bengal ., so that there is no bangladesh and our eastern states having access to sea for their economic betterment!!

1971 was a classic war where we picked defeat from the jaws of victory (classic indian ethos)


We are still behaving as if india only exists in UP/Bihar/Madhya Pradesh/Delhi and that will be our downfall!! the sooner the pakistan/bangladesh/saudir arabia is destroyed the better it will be for the whole world and us!!

1971 was just a lesson!! for us Indians by Krishna!! telling us that "those who don't finish their own Dharma and Karma are destined to repeat it again and again".

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby SBajwa » 06 Dec 2010 04:32

Thus if we don't finish Pakistan and Bangladesh in our lifetimes (50+ years) than expect to believe that your children and great grand children won't know anything whatsoever about Desi Ethos!! We will be praying to Arabian 5 times a day and giving our money to Arabian tourism for Hajj and umra!!

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Baikul » 06 Dec 2010 06:09

If we're doing personal memories.

I am told that a few months after the '71 war there came a time when I, as a three year old, ran back to my mother yelling that "an Uncle" was in the house, asking for her.

Turns out the 'Uncle' was my father, back from the '71 war and he'd been gone long enough that I'd forgotten him.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 06 Dec 2010 07:04

Baikul wrote:If we're doing personal memories.

I am told that a few months after the '71 war there came a time when I, as a three year old, ran back to my mother yelling that "an Uncle" was in the house, asking for her.

Turns out the 'Uncle' was my father, back from the '71 war and he'd been gone long enough that I'd forgotten him.


:rotfl: Good one.

Those of us who leave home in the morning and return every evening do not even begin to understand the sacrifices made by families such as yours Baikul. Thank your father and mother for me.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 06 Dec 2010 07:31

My late cousin Suresh got, along with his Vir Chakra, a booklet containing all the names and citations of all Vir Chakra awardees from 1971. Here is a 6 MB scanned pdf of that booklet containing all 87 names along with a citation of the reason for the Vir Chakra.

http://rapidshare.com/files/435172262/v ... lowres.pdf

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 06 Dec 2010 07:40

Soon after the 1971 war, a 50-odd page illustrated booklet bearing an account of the war was published. I still have the original and the following scanned pdf used to be visible from my now dead Geocities account.

You can download the entire 2.6 MB booklet here:

http://rapidshare.com/files/435174685/1971war.pdf

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby g.sarkar » 06 Dec 2010 09:16

shiv wrote: The rotten ba$tards. What really irritates me in this day and age is people whining that we did not do more. The sort of international pressure under which Indira had to act is easily forgotten. Perhaps this explains why the 90,000 prisoners giot away. having concluded the war successfully India was probably not in a position militarily or economically to keep challenging the US that was supporting Pakistan and China against India.

Dr. Shiv,
I do not know if you remember the economic slow down in India after the Bangladesh war. The industrial growth slowed down significantly, fresh engineering graduates were getting no jobs (and there was no way of avoiding this, as a change in intake of fresh students, showed up after 5 years), factories were without orders and unemployment grew etc. One reason for this was the cost of the war that had to be paid. Another was the fact Nixon/Kissinger were angry with us and bent on screwing Mrs. Gandhi.
Gautam

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby Jagan » 06 Dec 2010 09:52

partha wrote: Any idea what happened to those 6 soldiers of Naga regiment?


They were 'liberated' at the end.. about a dozen indian army jawans by that time.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby shiv » 06 Dec 2010 10:12

g.sarkar wrote:
shiv wrote: The rotten ba$tards. What really irritates me in this day and age is people whining that we did not do more. The sort of international pressure under which Indira had to act is easily forgotten. Perhaps this explains why the 90,000 prisoners giot away. having concluded the war successfully India was probably not in a position militarily or economically to keep challenging the US that was supporting Pakistan and China against India.

Dr. Shiv,
I do not know if you remember the economic slow down in India after the Bangladesh war. The industrial growth slowed down significantly, fresh engineering graduates were getting no jobs (and there was no way of avoiding this, as a change in intake of fresh students, showed up after 5 years), factories were without orders and unemployment grew etc. One reason for this was the cost of the war that had to be paid. Another was the fact Nixon/Kissinger were angry with us and bent on screwing Mrs. Gandhi.
Gautam


The post war years were miserable.

When we sit in judgment of history a mere 39 years later - at least a few people are still alive to recount the conditions that led to the choices that were made in those days - including the choice of not carrying the war forward to occupy West Pakistan or even keep the Paki troops in India and blackmail Pakistan.

It is so easy for us in 2010 to shiver in our dhotis and have a 25 page thread on what we will do or will not do in case of a 2 front war. 1971 was a 2 front war with the possibility of turning into a 4 front war. China was encouraged to move against us and we had to set forces aside for China. And the US - with Nixon and Kissinger at the helm was dead set against India. Most older people like me will certainly be dead in another 40 years and there will be very few people to recall why the things that happened in 1971 happened in that particular way.

We fought a Pakistan that had arms and material support from the US and China. And Iran. And Turkey. Ind Indonesia. How naive to say that we should have done this that and the other. Ignorance, like history keeps coming round and round.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby rohitvats » 06 Dec 2010 12:27

^^^Add to it the situation on Western Front prior to the outbreak of formal war in East.....In words of Lt.General Candeth, the Western Army Commander, "‘The most critical period was between 8 and 26 October when 1 Corps and 1 Armoured Division were still outside Western Command. Had Pakistan put in a pre-emptive attack, during that period, the consequences would have been too dreadful to contemplate and all our efforts during the war would have been spent in trying to correct the adverse situation forced on us".

These were some of the odds we faced.

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Re: Remembering the 1971 war

Postby KLNMurthy » 06 Dec 2010 12:59

here is a 30 year perspective on the Bangladesh war which now seems poorly remembered:

Thirty Years Of Twilight


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