Today's is a legendary day in the history of India, as on Dec 3 1971 it is said that the Indian army fought it's biggest war after independence, ever after being a part of the Second World War during the British rule. The 1971 war between India and Pakistan, which began on Dec 3 and ended on Dec 16, was initiated by Pakistan itself which even ended with the surrender of the Pakistani army. Apart from the several major losses that Pakistan had to face due to the war, the most significant loss of Pakistan was losing East Pakistan, that emerged as an independent nation after 1971 with the name of Bangladesh.
The 1971 war that was triggered by Pakistan ended with the breakdown of the Islamic state in two different nations, whereby India who only tried to defend its borders and associated Bangladeshi forces for their liberation, fought and won the entire war predominantly because of the high morale of the Indian soldiers. This year we are celebrating the completion of 49 years of the Indian victory in the third Indo-Pakistan war and have moved towards celebrating the golden jubilee in 2021.
Pakistan seems to have learned no lessons ever from the wars they've fought and the defeats they had to face in the past. The story of the 1971 India Pakistan war is yet another tale of Pakistan's miscalculated overambitious operations against India, that were destined to fail. The failure of Pakistan in 1971, cannot be compared with either of the defeats ever and cannot be compared to the failure of any country around the world, post WWII.
The Pakistani civil war, which was being fought in Eastern Pakistan was turning into a massacre for the forces being controlled from Islamabad. Pakistan was certain that they had no chance to revive from the loss caused on the Eastern front of the war, which is when they decided to open another front of the war at the Laungewala post in Rajasthan. And the things happened at the Laungewala post, are the chapters of pride of India. Pakistan took the strength of the Indian army for granted, as they always have and attacked the Laungewala post along the Rajasthan border, with an objective to capture Jaisalmer and further control entire Rajasthan.
In the history of the world, never has it ever happened after WWII that an army of around 2000 soldiers supported by 60 tanks were destroyed so badly. While, the battle at Laungewala was never in favor of India, as the number of Indian soldiers who faced the Pakistani army was only 120.
The 23 Battalion of Punjab Regiment, headed by Maj Kuldeep Singh Chandpuri took the lead to secure the Laungewala front of the 1971 war while they realized the urgency to take action at the post itself and eliminate any chance for the Pakistani forces to progress ahead. It was highly risky to take any chance, since beyond the Laungewala post in Indian land, Pakistan had no other obstacle upto Jodhpur. Maj Chandpuri's Battalion realized the sensitivity of the moment choose not to take any risk at all, even though all the odds were against them.
“The heavy loss at the Laungewala front of the 1971 war from merely a battalion of 120 soldiers became an incident of disgrace for the Pakistani forces. What further punctured the dreamy ambitions of Pakistan was the operation of the Indian Air Force on Dec 8, when India fighter jets destroyed Pak's Murid Air Base through an Air strike, which was 120 km away from the border, in the Pakistani land.”
Squadron Leader R N Bharadwaj, Flying Officer V K Heble, Flying Officer B C Karambaya and Flight Lieutenant L Devaskar were the IAF officers involved in the mission to target the Murid Air base and destroy the mightiest fighter jets that the Pakistan Air Force had at that time, as a part of the war triggered not by India but Pakistan. The target of the IAF was to destroy the five F-86 Sabre Aircrafts and eliminate any potential threat from Pakistan, from any other means in order to retaliate the Laungewala battle.
The 1971 India Pakistan war is the proudest moment for India in the history of all the wars, battles or conflicts fought between the two nations and a dark patch in the history of Pakistan and their army.