Kargil: An Operational Update upto 25 July 1999

28 Jul, 1999    ·   234

Maj. Gen. Ashok Krishna (Retd) says that the proxy war in J&K has increased; the worst is yet to come




The Pak Army gradually withdrew to its side of the Line of Control (LoC) except from three pockets and some isolated positions which it still holds on the Indian side. Incidents of terrorism have considerably increased in J&K during the past week







Pakistan has managed to entice some Kashmiri youth into joining the militant ranks after  training in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK). 60-70 youth are reported to have gone to Pakistan from Surankot alone (near Poonch ), and another 150 have gone from three other Tehsils of Poonch district and from Rajauri district.



The ISI has established a new training camp at Zandu Peer in POK (opposite Maukot and Shahpur villages of Poonch district). 50 young recruits are  presently undergoing training at the camp.



About 600 militants belonging to the Hizbul Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Toiba and Harkat-ul--Mujahideen are waiting for an opportunity to infiltrate into Poonch and Rajauri districts. Should they succeed the total number of militants in J&K would rise to about 1300.



In the wake of the Kargil crisis the Pakistan government has decided to raise a "People’s Army" by imparting military training in schools and colleges to strengthen the country's defence.









Pakistani troops are still occupying three positions about 500-800 metres south of the LoC in the following areas:-



(a) Batalik .         Point 5285.



(b) Dras.                Point 5140.



(c) Mushkoh .      A height  east of  Marpola.



These three  positions held by 15-20 men, are supported by Pakistani artillery and could be reinforced. The Indian army is trying to evict  the aggressors . After fierce fighting the Army is reported to have finally cleared Dras of the intruders. The toll in these battles so far has been 21 Indian soldiers and 60 Pak intruders. The Army had been keen to evict the enemy before Operation Vijay was scaled down, but political- diplomatic clearance was not forthcoming.



Some intruders, still holed - up in a few isolated positions in the Mushkoh Valley , are being attacked. These operations are proceeding slowly as the area is heavily mined.



Apart from these positions, another 11 posts are held by the Pakistani intruders on or very close to, the LoC. The informal agreement reached by the DGMOs of India and Pakistan is understood to have centred around the clearing of all positions within a kilometre of the LoC. Pakistan is once again not abiding by its commitments.



The Indian army is preparing for winter deployment which could be a brigade each for the following:-



(a) Mushkoh Valley - Dras.



(b) Kaksar - Kargil.



(c) Batalik.



(d) Chorbat La - Turtok - NJ 9842






The Indian artillery has till date fired about 1,50,000 rounds at Pakistani positions and their guns across the LoC. While Indian guns were firing nearly 4,000 rounds on a daily basis, the bombardment was stepped up to as much as 12,000 rounds on days when assaults were launched by our troops.






Till 24 July these were as under:-



(a) India . 410 killed including 45 officers; and 578 wounded.



(b)Pak Army. Over  700 killed and a similar number wounded.



Pakistan of course places Indian casualties at 1500 - 1700 killed and an equal number wounded. Their own casualties are reported to be 158 killed.



Air Operations



These have remained suspended since 11 July. During operations, no laser guided bombs were used by the Indian Air Force. Normal 1000 pound  bombs, modified with a kit to receive laser emissions, were dropped on several occasions. No napalm was used.



Enemy opposition included surface to air missiles (SAMs) and shoulder fired Stinger missiles. Over 100 SAMs and several hundred rounds of anti aircraft ammunition were fired.






19 persons including three woman and six children were massacred and six injured as heavily armed militants struck in Doda and Poonch districts of Jammu on 19 July.



13 persons, including a Congress leader and 10 militants were killed and seven wounded in escalated violence in J&K since 22 July.



A heavily armed group of  Pakistani militants was engaged on 24 July in Kupwara near the LoC. They retreated leaving behind missiles, guns, grenades and explosives.



To defeat insurgency in J&K and north eastern India , the government has decided to augment the strength of para military forces by raising 12 Rashtriya Rifles and 20 Assam rifles battalions.






Pakistan has never kept its commitments; hence,  its army personnel  will have to be forcibly evicted from the pockets of resistance which they have deliberately not vacated.



The proxy  war in  J&K  has increased; the  worst is yet to come.