The indo-pakistan war of 1971 was a head-to-head clash between India and Pakistan which led to the independence of Bangladesh. The war commenced on 3rd December 1971 and the Pakistani army surrendered with 93,000 soldiers on 16th December 1971. The war lasted for a duration of 13 days. General Amir Abdullah Khan Niazi signed the agreement with Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora around 4:30 p.m (IST) and a minute later Lieutenant General Jgjit Singh Aurora counter signed the instrument of surrender.
By the end of April 1971, violence and genocide in East Pakistan had driven an estimate of 10 million refugees to India. The situation was proving an immense strain on the fledging Indian economy and all indications anticipated that millions of others were ready to cross over. In Islamabad, the military dictator General Yahya khan refused to acknowledge that the east Pakistan citizens were fleeing to India by the millions.
Despite India’s own difficulties the east Pakistanis were accommodated in refugee camps and were provided with food and shelter. Meanwhile in East Pakistan, a local population was up in arms against their military and public administration but were brutally subjugated by the Pakistani army. Such events made Prime Minister Indira Gandhi aware about the hurdling situation, and that India might have to take action and step in forcefully.
On the eve of 3rd December,1971 an attacking movement was launched by Pakistan against India.
On 3rd Dec,1971 the war began with Operation Chengiz Khan’s pre-emptive ariel strikes on 11 Indian air stationsand radar stations in the Western Sector, primarily in Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Haryana and Rajasthan, which resulted in the commencement of hostilities with Pakistan. The first wave of attack was done with PAK against the airbases of IAF of Pathankot and Amritsar. The runways of Pathankot and Amritsar air bases were damaged in this attack, as was the radar station at Amritsar.
Taking advantage of the full moon on the night of Dec 3rd, 1971 a second wave of Pakistan air force came in bombing and strafing the Indian airfield both these attempts were so clumsy that not one Indian aircraft was damaged on the ground. Simultaneous raids were carried out by PAF at the radar station in Faridkot in Punjab, causing it damage.
The third wave of Pakistani air attacks took place on Agra in Uttar Pradesh, Halwara near Ludhiana in Punjab, and Ambala and Sirsa in Haryana. Two B-57 aircraft of PAF dropped bombs on the runway at Agra, but failed to damage it, and this runway was used by the IAF later the same evening for a retaliatory air strike on Pakistan. PAF air strikes also took place on Uttarlai, Jodhpur and Jaisalmer in Rajasthan, and Bhuj and Jamnagar in Gujarat. In addition to these air attacks, the Pakistan Army launched offensive action along the Line of Control in J&K and started artillery shelling of forward positions of the Indian Army. The Pakistan Army undertook another offensive action against India by resorting to artillery shelling at forward Indian positions in Punjab and Rajasthan, and a day later on December 4, launched an ambitious attack in Laungewala sector in Rajasthan which was thwarted by the Indian Army and IAF with the complete destruction of the Pakistani tanks and attacking forces.
Naval Hostilities in Indo-Pak war 1971
The Indo-Pakistani Naval warfare of 1971 were the series of aggressive naval battles fought by the Indian and Pakistani Navy during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. These battles were an integral part of India-Pakistan War of 1971 and the Pakistan war in Bangladesh. The series of naval operations began by the Indian Navy to exert pressure from the seas while the Indian Army and Indian Air Force moved in to close the ring round East Pakistan from several directions on land. The naval operations incorporated the naval interdiction, air defence, ground support, and logistics missions.
With the success of the Indian Navy’s operations in East Pakistan, the Indian Navy commenced two large-scale operations, Operation Trident and Operation Python in the Western front, prior to the start of formal combat between India and Pakistan.
Instrument of ‘SURRENDER’ Dhaka,1971
The Pakistan Eastern Command agreed to surrender all Pakistan armed foreces in Bangladesh to Lieutenant-General Jagjit Singh Aurora. General Officer commanding in chief of India and Bangladesh forces in the eastern theatre. This surrender includes all Pakistani land, air and naval forces as also all Para-military Forces and civil armed forces. These forces will lay down their arms and surrender at the places where they are currently located to the nearest nuclear troops under the command of Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora.
The Pakistan Eastern Command shall come under the orders of Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora as soon as the instrument would be signed (16th dec,1971). Disobedience of orders will be regarded as a breach of the surrender terms and will be dealt with in accordance with the accepted laws and usage of war. The decision of Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora was final and no such doubt should arise to the meaning of interpretation of the surrender terms. Pakistan lost, the then called East-Pakistan, 60% of its population and 20% of its Landmass.
In one swift war India achieved its biggest military and diplomatic victory, making Pakistan humiliated and making Bangladesh a reality.