• This conflict is known as the 1965 war or Second Kashmir War and it took place after the Pakistan army’s Operation Gibraltar in India Occupied Kashmir. The 1965 war caused casualties on both sides.
• India attacked across the international border on September 6 and a full-scale war broke out which concluded with a ceasefire on September 22. Peace between the two countries was negotiated under Soviet auspices in Tashkent on January 10th, 1966.
• On September 8, India launched its main attack against Sialkot using its armoured division and other strike formations. Analysts consider this to be the largest tank battle since World War II. It was a hard and bitter struggle fought over many days and nights, resulting in many casualties on both sides. In the end India’s armoured division was forced to withdraw, owing to very high losses in men and materiel.
• The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) also played a significant role in this war, which was the first time that the air forces of both states were facing each other. PAF pilots displayed remarkable skills despite its smaller size and its best example was that of Squadron Leader M.M. Alam, who shot down five Indian fighter planes.
• On 7th September in 1965 Pakistan Navy, under the guidance of Commodore S. M. Anwar, attacked the Indian naval radar station that was set up on the coast of Dwarka in India, which is approximately 320km to the south-east of Karachi Port. The operation was successful and it boosted the morale of our soldiers and the nation as a whole.
• During this war, 1617 sq. miles of territory was occupied by Pakistan as compared to 446 sq. miles of Pakistan’s open and undefended territory occupied by India. In this war the Pakistan Army captured 20 Indian officers, 19 junior Indian Commissioned Officers and 569 other ranks.
• On January 10, 1966, a declaration of formal cessation of hostilities was signed by the presidents of both Pakistan and India. From Pakistan’s side General Ayub Khan and from India’s side Lal Bahadur Shastri were there on this occasion.
Published in Dawn, Young World, September 1st, 2018