Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Indo-Pak War (1947-48)

The Provincial sub-division of Kashmir followed geographical features. The lofty Pir Panjal Range , running roughly east to west with heights varying from 2500 to 4500 metres divides the valley from Jammu region. Further, towards the east running from north to south, lies the great Himalayan range comprising heights above 5000 metres, which divides Ladakh from both the valley and Jammu region.   North of the valley and Ladakh lie Gilgit, Hunza, Baltistan,also known as the Northern Territories. Main land India was linked to the Valley by a fair weather road from Pathan kot, across the 2,700 metres high Banihal Pass to Srinagar. A mountainous trade route also existed between Manali (in present day Himachal) and leh, the district headquarters of Ladakh.Other major routes into the valley as well as  to the northern areasrun through what is now Pakistan.   
The strategy enjoyed by Pakistan to annex the state was was expected that before India reacted possession of Jammu and Kashmir would constitute law.In this game plan Pakistan came within a whisker of success. With the Northern Territories overrun by 30th July 1947, by 26 Oct elements of the main columns were at Baramulla.. So kilometres from Srinagar, raping and looting along the way.
The military set in Jammu and   Kashmir comprised of an army Hd. quarter at Srinagar and four Brigades. The army HD. Quarter was headed by Brigadier Rajendra Singh, chief of staff of the J&K state force .The state force had no artillery or armour. 
The Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir, Hari Singh, son of Gulab Singh, had raised his hands up when Pakistani trbal intruders backed by Regular army infiltrated his region.  
The Indian Armed Forces reacted immediately after the act of accession, when an impromptu airlift operation was put together and an infantry battallion -1 Sikh was flown to Srinagar.   
After fierce battle a cewase fire was installed under the the supervision of UN team on 1 jan 1949, with a loss of a portion of Jammu and Kashmir.