50 Years of 1971 War Triumph: Veterans of Ambala Region Relive Memories

50 Years of 1971 War Triumph: Veterans of Ambala Region Relive Memories
Lt Gen SS Mahal, GOC, Kharga Corps, and other signatories receiving the victory flame at Kharga Stadium in Ambala Cantt.

As the nation celebrates Swarnim Vijay Varsh to commemorate 50 years of the 1971 Indo-Pak war triumph, the veterans from the Ambala region, on the sidelines of an official felicitation at the Kharga Stadium in cantonment area on Thursday, shared anecdotes.

Colonel Kuldev Nand (retd) was only 26 when his 23 Mountain Artillery brigade had to face the bullets from the Pakistani forces while advancing towards Mudafarganj in Bangladesh (then East Pakistan) on the morning of December 4, 1971.

“When we received orders to move forward, suddenly firing started from the opposite side and two of our men got injured. We attacked, killed eight men and captured two. Later, we found a heavily injured armourer in the fields, who pleaded with us to shoot him. He was lucky he was facing the Indian Army, and we did not kill him. Rather, he was evacuated and given medical care, before he left for Pakistan,” he said.

Lieutenant General KS Dogra (retd) was with the corps of Army Air Defence and posted in Sambha (Jammu and Kashmir), and was responsible to track the enemy’s location.

“With the help of radar control guns, we shot down many Pakistani aircraft. On December 3 and 7, many of their aircraft were destroyed, due to which their spirits were broken, and then they never flew in our areas,” he said.

Subedar Sewa Singh, 92, from the Bombay Engineer Group, a regiment of the Corps of Engineers, who retired in 1975, couldn’t talk, but his son Baldev Singh said that his father had defused a bomb in Ferozepur Zira and saved many lives.

The felicitations took place a day after the victory flame was received in a grand reception by Lieutenant General SS Mahal, GOC, Kharga Corps. Lieutenant General Ranjit Singh (retd) highlighted the role of Kharga Corps in 1971 war triumph.

The flame will now be taken to Patiala, Chandimandir and Siachen glacier, the GOC said.