Kargil Vijay Divas is the day when India has proved that it is committed to friendship and ready for war at the global level. It was the day when Indian soldiers hoisted the victory flag against Pakistani infiltrators.
‘Kargil Vijaya Divas’ commemorates the sacrifice, patriotism, adventure, prowess and dedication of Indian soldiers. Even though it has been 23 years since the end of the Kargil war, this is an unforgettable day that every citizen of the country can be proud of.
What led Kargil War between India and Pakistan –
In the Kargil region of Kashmir, the temperature drops to minus 48 degrees in winter. Guarding the border in this bitter cold is a very challenging job. Thus Indian soldiers used to move from this area during winter. They used to go there again after the start of summer.
The hypocrite Pakistan exploited this and infiltrated its soldiers into India in the winter of February 1999. Pakistani infiltrators crossed the Line of Control and captured the Kargil mountain camps. This led to the Kargil war between India and Pakistan.
Operation Vijay to attack the Pakistan Army
Pakistan secretly infiltrated its 5000 soldiers inside the border without the Indian Army noticing. Pakistan’s then army chief Pervez Musharraf encouraged this. Local shepherds tipped off the Indian soldiers that Pakistani troops had entered the country’s border.
In this background, when India sent 5 soldiers for patrolling, Pakistan mercilessly killed all five of them. Enraged by this, the Indian government immediately mobilized 20,000 soldiers to keep the Pakistani infiltrators out of the country. This operation was named ‘Operation Vijay’.
The Kargil War was fought in a steep valley, in a snow-capped mountain range of about 16,000 feet in the distance. It is one of the most inaccessible places in the world.
Nevertheless, the Pakistani troops on the mountain range easily identified the movements of the Indian soldiers and bombed and shelled them. Moreover, it was a very challenging task to climb the impassable mountains with weapons in the bitter cold without being seen by the Pakistani soldiers. But the Indian soldiers overcame all these obstacles and fought bravely and won.
Indian Air Force and its mission ‘Safed Sagar’
The Air Force also joined hands with the Army in the Kargil war to defeat Pakistan. From May 26, the Air Force started an operation under the name of ‘Operation Safed Sagar’.
It started operating from Srinagar, Awantipora, Adampur airfields. The addition of the Air Force further strengthened the Army. MiG-21 aircraft, Bofors guns were used extensively in the war. But in this operation, India lost two fighter planes – MIG 21 and 27.
Navy’s Mission ‘Talawar’:
Navy also plunged into the Kargil war. In the name of ‘Operation Talwar’, by increasing its hold on the Arabian Sea, it prevented petroleum products from reaching Pakistan. As then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif revealed, Pakistan had only enough fuel for 6 days if the war started on the full scale. This unexpected act of the navy shook Pakistan.
Kargil Vijay Divas – Road to Victory:
Brave Indian soldiers recaptured 2 major parts of the Betalik sector after continuous fighting. India also captured the Tololing area. Later 10 Pak soldiers were killed, and Tiger Hills was captured. 5 Indian soldiers were killed in this operation.
Overall, after about 2 months of operation, the percentage of Pakistan-occupied areas 75 to 80 percent of the parts were returned to India. However, as a result of the shrewd diplomatic moves of then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, due to pressure from the international community, it became necessary for Pakistan to withdraw its Army from other parts.
Finally, on 26 July 1999, India was declared victorious over Pakistan. ‘Kargil Vijaya Divas’ is celebrated every year to commemorate this victory.
Kargil war is known as the war in which sophisticated weapons were used after the 2nd world war. Also, this was the first war to be televised across the country. It is also one of the wars fought in the most remote areas of the world. During the Kargil war, the government spent Rs 15 crore every day. The cost is a record.