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Sep 5th, 2007 #1----
L-R Gen Musa Khan, FM Ayub Khan, AM Nur Khan, Maj Gen Yahya Khan at a briefing in September 1965.
6 September 2007 brings to us the 42nd anniversary of the Indo-Pak war of September 1965 and refreshes the memories of the fateful morning of
6 September from 1965 which went down in Pakistan's history as a significant day. Lahore, the city known as Pakistan's heart was attacked by India in the early hours of 6 September. For the next 17 days till 23 September history was in the making and the nation discovered a lot about itself. And exemplary tales of heroism and sacrifice were written in blood, for the defence of the motherland. New national heroes came up, the bar for heroism was raised much higher by those heroes.
Every 6 September we must celebrate the Defence Day with zeal and patriotism and must pay rich deserving tributes to out defenders who are ready to lay their lives for us and our Pakistan. As someone rightly put it once; for our tomorrow they sacrifice their today.
Long Live Pakistan, Long Live Pakistan Armed Forces!
Rich, hearty salutes to our defenders. :Salute:
In this Defence Day celebratory thread, I'd like to present:
A short Nishan-i-Haider Quiz.
Some interesting nd rare pictures from 1965.
And, would request everyone to share stories they've heard from their elders about the 17 fateful days in September 1965. Those who were there at the time are requested to share their memories and emotions. Those whose family members/elders took part in the war are requested even more to let us know and share with us the stories so we could offer our respects and homage to the veterans and their efforts. Those who were in Lahore, Sialkot, Rawalpindi, Karachi, Peshawar or other important bases/cantts are also requested to offer some input on the life during those days.
Last edited by Haris; Sep 5th, 2007 at 02:31 PM.
Sep 5th, 2007 #2----
The Nishan-i-Haider Quiz.
We all know Nishan-i-Haider is Pakistan's highest award, civil and military combined, it's status is highest. It is awarded posthumously for acts of courage and devotion beyond the call of duty. It is awarded to all ranks, and is the highest decoration.
Here are a few interesting question and their answers will be posted later.
It may be known by many, and many might want to discover, so please this is just for knowledge, do take part and take a shot at all questions instantly, no need to think hard, google, wikipedia, ask around or shy away.
Just answer right away!
Edit Note: Answers have been added. Highlight the spaces under the questions with your mouse to reveal and read them clearly.
1. Who is considered the most decorated Nishan-i-Haider recipient among all Nishan-i-Haider recipients to date?
Maj Shabbir Sharif Shaheed; He earned the Sword of Honour from PMA, Sitara-e-Jurat in 1965 and Nishan-i-Haider in 1971.
2. How many Nishan-i-Haider medals have been awarded so far since 1947?
3. When was the first Nishan-i-Haider awarded?
4. Who was the first recipient?
Captain Sarwar Shaheed.
5. Who is the latest on the list of Nishan-i-Haider panel of heroes?
Naik Saif Ali.
6. Who was the only one to receive the Nishan-i-Haider in the war of 1965?
Major Raja Aziz Bhatti.
7. How old was the youngest recipient of Nishan-i-Haider?
20 years old.
8. How many officers have received it?
9. How many NCOs/JCOs have received it?
Three (plus one on equivalence).
10. How many have been earned by the Army, Navy and PAF respectively so far?
9 (plus 1 on equivalence) by Army. So far none by Navy. 1 by PAF.
11. Which Regiment is the highest decorated with Nishan-i-Haiders so far?
The Punjab Regiment.
12. Which district of Pakistan has produced the most number of recipients so
13. Who received the so far only Nishan-i-Haider awarded in a non-war/peacetime situation?
Pilot Officer Rashid Minhas Shaheed.
14. Which Unit of Pakistan Army is knows as the Haidery Battalion?
17 Punjab Regiment; Major Aziz Bhatti's Unit for its exemplary role in the defence of Lahore and only award of NH earned in 1965.
15. In which year was a Nishan-i-Haider awarded last time?
Last edited by Haris; Sep 9th, 2007 at 10:53 AM. Reason: Answers Added.
Sep 5th, 2007 #3----
Sep 5th, 2007 #4----
A Pakistani soldier on guard at the milstone showing arrival at the Rajesthan town of KhemKaran in Sep 1965.
Pakistani soldiers on guard in a bunker in Sep 1965
A painting depicting the arrival of Pakistani soldiers in the captured town of Khem Karan in Rajasthan during the war in Sep 1965.
FM Ayub Khan awarding the Nishan-i-Haider medal to the wife of Major Aziz Bhatti Shaheed Mrs. Zareena Bhatti.
On her right is Mrs Brigadier Ahsan Rasheed Shami Shaheed, in line to be decorated with her husband's Hilal-i-Jurat.
Photographs courtesy ISPR.
Last edited by Haris; Sep 9th, 2007 at 10:56 AM.
Sep 5th, 2007 #5----
Ae Mard-e-Mujahid Jaag zara; A classic tarana from the era.
Ae Raahe Haq Ke Shaheedo; There couldnt have been a greater tribute as a song to martyred heroes.
Ae puttar hattan te nai wikde; the anthem for the war of 1965 and for every national day for eternity. This and a few other emotional and charged classics from Noor Jehan are a symbol of national pride.
Sep 6th, 2007 #6
Dad wrote this a few years ago.
I was assistant inspector of weapons at Inspectorate of Armaments when the emergency was declared. I was ordered to join 16th Self-Propelled Field Regiment Artillery LAD (light aid detatchment) of 3rd Armored Brigade of 6th Armd Division.
I reported at Rear HQ of the division, communicated and was picked up by regiment's MTO and taken in a jeep to the
location of regiment. My actual job was to have whole equipment of the regiment in battle-worthy state. This included
guns, vehicles, weapons and wirlesss sets. I had about 30 men under my command, all tech, almost. I was to be located
much behind the gun positions but had instead deployed myself and requisite men at the gun positions all the time.
Additionally I accepted the duties of MTO, Quarter Master and incharge B echelon thus sparing 3 officers to do the
Observer duties. Of course I also got myself trained as Observer.
1) 1965 May, Mujahideen in Indian Occupied Kashmir troubling Indian Army. Indians have its army deployed all along
the border, Pakistan responds. Late evening I report to a self-propelled artillery unit of strike formation, as tech
support officer. We are in Changa Manga jungle full of fly-size mosquitoes and wild boars sweltering heat, total
darkness dug up on the fringes of jungle. No movement or activity allowed. Additional duties including training as
reserve Observer are accepted. Observers are located on the battle front including enemy territory at vintage point to
guide and give correction to own artillery fire on enemy positions or troop movement.
2) Its July/August. Humidity has added miseries to the already extreme discomforts. Indians still have not located the strike formation. The tribesman and commandos have joined mujahideen. Indian army in IOK is in shambles and terrified and locks itself in fortified camps at night. Nowshehra, Rajauri, Poonch etc are threatened & almost vacated. It was like 1948/49 situation when even Srinagar airport was captured by mujahideen and Indians had to rush to UN for ceasefire and committed plebiscite in Kashmir. However this time, they do it differently
3) Early morning of 6 September, their air force attacks a passenger train moving from Sialkot to Lahore, crosses
the international border and launches full scale attack on Lahore without declaration of war. The generals have vowed
to have a peg at Lahore Gymkhana same evening. They are stopped at BRB canal, the main line of defence, never ever able to cross it.
4) The strike force moves same afternoon towards Kasur, Khem Karran, Taran Taran to hit at the belly of Indian Force. The advance is halted at and around Rohi nalla. Someone had messed up. The recce carried out and routes approved in the Advance Plain by Brig Lumb are all incorrect. Those routes and terrain could not bear heavy armour and artillery cross country due to very high water table. The advance is delayed by almost 48 hours. Meanwhile Indian air recce locates advance of Strike Force. It's a pity that brigadier was not court martialled and hanged.
5) Third night and we are in Indian territory, Khem Karan - Taran Taran. Indians have inundated the whole area in
the north of road. Movement towards Jullundhar and Ambala not possible. Tanks are stuck and are sitting ducks. Infantry
has reached the RV but own amour is missing. An amour unit (13 Lancers) suffers the maximum casualties when having
been hit by Indian anti amour units and having exhausted their ammunition, dismounts and fight like an infantry.
6) I am traveling in a jeep in the evening leading ammunition and food supply convoy towards Taran Taran. The
wireless operator in the back seat is in comm with imam (commanding officer of the unit) who wants to speak to me. I
lean back and turn my head to grab the mike. A shower of bullets graze the back of my neck. Some guerrilla in elephant
grass/ high sugar cane/ cotton plants. We deploy to search but cant find him. Its dark, we miss the gun positions track
and probably start traveling up-north. Suddenly we stop on hearing "Stop Oy kaun ay. Ki password ay". In the mild moon
light I could make out some tanks "Oay aapi aan sardar ji, towaday gawandhi" and start reversing. We had hit the
enemy concentration. It was too late for sardar ji to realize, who started firing but by then we escaped. We reached
our destination at dusk. The second in command was resting in bushes rather than in foxhole. His explanation : The
guerrilla will always look you up in the foxholes ! I smiled to tell him I was better off there being no time night
before to dig a foxhole, I had rested with a skeleton in a grave!
7) The threat at Lahore was increasing. Our brigade was ordered to move to Lahore-Barki Sector. It was
mid-afternoon and I was leading a convoy of guns, ammo, POL and supply vehicles. Outskirts of Kasoor on Kasoor-Lahore
road, in the open, saw two enemy aircrafts hovering. By then PAF had achieved parity with IAF and it was considered
safe enough to move during day time. The aircrafts dropped their four bombs and hurried away. We could see these
floating in the sky and coming toward us but were helpless so we kept moving. These exploded in the flanks causing no
damage at all. The aircrafts dared not dive to straffe us!
8) Barki Sector, mid night, on gun positions. We hear shouts from jeep fast traveling rearwards to Lahore. "Enemy
has crossed BRB with armor and is fast advancing. Run for your life". The adjutant ( who is a minister now )
orders all guns to be deployed broad in one line and to be used as antitank. A Major
dismounts a jeep with sub machine gun in his hands, shouting "where is the enemy? Who has spread this rumour.
Jawano come along lets hunt the enemy" and rushes toward BRB with his men.
9) Meanwhile India has launched its largest offensive with one armored and two infantry divisions in Sialkot
sector. At that time Pakistan had only one armored regiment in support of one infantry brigade in that sector. They stopped the onslaught. The tanks were lined up one mile apart in one frontal line and told to advance, find the enemy and engage. (The armor moves in triangular formulation. One tank in front, two in rear flanks. This is one troop. Then three troops and one troop in reserve. All these is one squadron. Then the three squadron making a regiment. Then three regiments make a brigade. Then three brigades making a division. So the formation is a very broad base isosceles triangle. The strength of advancing armor is accessed by number of engagement by opposing force in time and distance frames. So contact by enemy of 45 tanks in short time and distance frame befooled it to be an armored division frontal attack). This slowed down the momentum of Indian advance to regroup and Pakistan gained time to move forces from other sectors. Only one brigade had held the advance of one crops for 3 days !!(excellent command of Brig Niazi who, sadly, proved to be a failure in EP as Corps Comd).
10) So we are moved from Lahore to Sialkot. We take up position along Sialkot-Pasroor road, in general area village
Bathhe. The other armored brigade of strike force was also moved from Kasoor sector to reinforce at and around
Chawinda. At one point all the field, medium and heavy guns were deployed almost next to each other and
unconventionally very much forward. (Field arty is one regiment per brigade, medium is distributed one battery each and
heavy is one regiment per corps. The guns are deployed (1965 era warfare) at about 3-4 miles (field), 6-8 miles
(medium), 10 miles (heavy) from the forward defensive lines (FDLs). Enemy assesses strength of forces from distance of
shells falling in its territory. So knowing the max range of guns held by an opposing forces, say 20 miles of heavy
gun, if the shell lands 10-20 miles deep in its territory, it is heavy gun and therefore corps deployment. As all the
guns were deployed about 2-3 miles from FDLs, Indians were confusingly harassed. All field guns were being assessed as
medium, medium as heavy and heavy as super heavy! They were foxed. But such like tactics are effective for couple of
days only. They added an extra armor and artillery brigade to their strength.
11) I was incharge of B-echelon as well, supposed to be located 3 miles behind gun positions, getting food
prepared, collecting ammo, POL and other supplies and delivering personally as many times a day as possible. I would
get baulking from boss for spending most of day at gun positions and also loc the echelon not more than one mile
behind. The gun positions always run the risk of counter bombardment (CB) by enemy. The "Tipsy-dog" radar would trace
the trajectory of shell, feed data to heavy mortars who would fire back. One day a heavy CB came. Artillery commander
at brigade HQ asked for situation report. The adjutant wisely said "We are Ok, Imam, the enemy CB is falling 500 yards
plus of us at our rear", Expecting that enemy will be listening to wireless comm. Within few minutes the CB was
shifted and we could watch the shells falling 500 yards ahead of us! When dust cleared I saw one shell embedded in the
inner rear wall of my trench unexploded!
12) Chawinda! O Yes. It was 17 or 18 September. Indians had reorganized. They launched the most severe attack with
four heavy armored brigades and infantry division plus. To face them were four armored regiments and five infantry
battalions, all depleted. Aim was to isolate Lahore from west through axis Chawinda- Pasroor-Narowal-GT Road. All the
artillery guns were deployed in anti-tank roll and SP Guns as tanks, to fire point blank at approaching enemy. This
probably was the biggest armor battle-war since WW2. In next 3 days it was all over. We didn't budge an inch but caused
very heavy damage to enemy to force them to retreat. O yes I took shoots as observer like a gunner officer!
13) Once again ceasefire was negotiated. At midnight 23 September, all firing was to be stopped. That night, at
gun position, we were picking up possible enemy targets or concentrations, off the map and "sending" 18 to 36 shells of
105 mm caliber high explosive salvos as last gifts. In return, just before cease fire, we attracted CB. One of the SP
guns fully loaded with shells and cordite caught fire. A young captain, mounted the SP tank and started throwing out
shells and cordite and warning the crew to take away the nearby shells and explosives. He single handedly extinguished
the fire. I had seen that captain once returning from observers duty with a bullet hole in his sleeve folds. This young
officer had joined the unit during the war and I had the honour to share the bunker. A very brave, imaginative,
intelligent and shrewd officer. He is a VVIP now (General Pervez Musharraf)
14) Morning of the ceasefire and I went over to the area where the tank battle was fought. In an area of about 4x8
miles, there were innumerable destroyed enemy tanks, littered with dead bodies, limbs and even boots. I had the camera
on me and took many photos. Most of the dead I found were Sikhs. On my return I informed acting Imam of what I saw. I
marked the area of my adventurous recce on the map. The eyeballs of adjutant popped out. He said "This particular area
where you have been roaming, was mined by us only 3-4 days back to protect our singleline front of gun deployment".
This was the forth instant that I found death being so near yet so far away. It firmed my belief there after that
destiny is not in your control. The day and time is fixed for one's demise. I have never ever been afraid of death
15) This war was a draw. However an outnumbered force stood like a rock against very heavy odds. But for one
mistake by one brig, the history would have been different today. We have the same situation now as in 1965 but India
dare not cross international border not even the LOC. They had had their lesson!!!I am only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.
Sep 7th, 2007 #7----
Valuable input 5Abi!
Sep 9th, 2007 #8----
Answers added folks, if anyone's interested...
Sep 19th, 2007 #9
A bundle of thanks for sharing this valuable information with us. Please enlighten me on few more points as follows:
Below is the list of HAIDERI Units of Army.
Captain Muhammad Sarwar Shaheed's Unit
Formrly, 2nd Batallion of the 1st Punjab Regiment and later 2nd Punjab "Haideri" Regt.
Major Muhammad Tufail Shaheed's Unit
Formerly East Pakistan Rifles and later ____ Punjab Regt. Some say that it is 16 Punjab Regt which, as per my knowledge, is wrong. 16 Punjab Regt was formerly known as 5th Batallion of the 14th Punjab Regt. It is also called 40 Pathans. Anyway it is not the actual unit of Major Muhammad Tufail Shaheed. Please tell me if you happen to know.
Major Raja Abdul Aziz Bhatti Shaheed's Unit
Formerly 4th Batallion of the 16th Punjab Regt and later 17 Punjab "Haideri" Regt.
Major Muhammad Akram Shaheed's Unit
Formerly 2nd Batallion of the 12th Frontier Force Regt and later 4 FF "Haideri " Regt.
Major Shabbir Shareef Shaheed's Unit
Formerly 4th Batallion of the 12th Frontier Force Regt and later 6 FF "Haideri " Regt.
Sawar Muhammad Hussain Shaheed's Unit
20 Lancers "Haideri" Regt
Lance Naik Muhammad Mahfooz Shaheed's Unit
Formerly 3rd Batallion of the 16th Punjab Regt and later 15 Punajb "Haideri" Regt. Also known as 33 Muhammadis.
Captain Karnal Sher Khan Shaheed's Unit
Parent unit was 27 Sind Regt, but at the time of Shahadat, he was on ERE to 11 NLI "Haideran" Regt.
Havaldar Lalak Jan Shaheed's Unit
11 NLI "Haidran" Regt.
Nishan-e-Haider of Captain Karnal Sher Khan Shaheed is claimed by both 27 Sind Regt and 11 NLI.
11 NLI is the only unit in Pakistan Army with 2 Nishan-e-Haiders and i.e., why it is called "HAIDRAN" instaed of "HAIDAERI".
Please do correct me wherever I am wrong.
Sep 20th, 2007 #10----
Thanks for the feedback and info sir.
Actually I'm also not too sure about what this particular 'equivalence' of the Hilal-i-Kashmir awarded to Naik Saif Ali in being 'equivalent' to Nishan-i-Haider really means, and although I had been hearing of it since last August in 2006 I was not convinced and considered it misinformation, however I was confirmed this year esp in Aug and Sep that the GoP, MoD and Army have accepted the AK Highest Award of Hilal-i-Kashmir as equivalent to Nishan-i-Haider in stature, thus the HK earned by Naik Saif Ali in 1940s somewhere in Kashmir, is held as 'equivalent' to NH.
I haven't come across any official citation, nor notification or article of the equivalent status nor on Naik Saif Ali or his feats. I have however seen and observed Naik Saif Ali being regraded officially as equal to NH due to his HK on official Govt or Army celebrations, portraits, collages and office walls and lists.
The official portrairs are now 11, and officiallists include Naik Saif Ali and even on 6 Sep 2007 when as per tradition since 1965 Gens lay wreaths on graves and memorials of NH recipients and other martyrs, a Gen laid wreaths at the grave of Naik Saif Ali, recognizing him as a recipient of HK equivalent to NH, but not NH itself.
As for the citation for his martyrdom, I wonder why it hasnt been released yet, or maybe I havent seen it yet. I too have been extremely keen on trying to find out what his story was, who he was, where from, how he was martyred, where and why he was given an equivalent status, and that too decaeds later...? So far all I know is he belonged to the AK Regt, or maybe being a Kashmir effort martyr he has been adopted by AK Regt.
I would appreciate it highly if you update me with any info if you gather any on this.
I too am not sure which Unit Maj Tufail belonged to originally. And it's interesting that Capt Sher Khan's NH is credited by both NLI and Sindh. But I guess both deserve to count it as theirs.
Speaking of Maj Mohd Akram I was wondering, do you have any idea where he is buried because I wonder if his body was found or not, or if found if it was buried in Hilli EP or brought back?
Also, you mentioned Capt Sher Khan was on ERE to NLI. What does ERE mean?
Sep 21st, 2007 #11
Thanks for clarifying. Let me add something more. The issue of Equivalence of Kashmiri Medals with those of Pakistan is quite old. It is not just Hilal-e-Kashmir, but some even think that it is Fakhr-e-Kashmir which was the highest Military award of Kashmir. I have the honour of serving as a Regimental Medical Officer with 10th Batallion of the Azad Kashmir Regiment in 1992-1993 in Azad Kashmir. This unit was once called Mahmood Ghaznavi Batallion and later 10 AKRF. One of old CO of this unit too had the honour of receiving Hilal-e-Kashmir or Fakhr-e-Kashmir. The unit had taken up a case for equivalence but it was not agreed upon on.
Sep 26th, 2007 #12----
I see Dr Sufi. Thanks for the info
How long did you serve with the Army and were you inducted through AMC Rwp?
Sep 5th, 2008 #13----
Documentary on Nishan-i-Haider
Sep 6th, 2008 #14
very kind info :biggthumbPakistan Air Force
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