The nation pays tribute to the brave hearts and unsung heroes of Kargil war on Vijay Diwas. Today the President, Prime Minister, Defence Minister, Senior Army, Naval and Indian Air Force officials and the family members of the martyrs will join to pay homage for the sacrifices made by the heroes. Although the event would be observed across the country, the main event will take place in Dras sector in Jammu and Kashmir and Amar Jyoti Jawan in New Delhi. As the nation pays tributes to its sons here are some points from the war which made about one of the most dangerous confrontations in South Asia:

 

  • The conflict or war in common parlance was the first confrontation major between Indian and Pakistan after the 1971 Bangladesh liberation war
  • The conflict started when about 1000 infiltrators had entered into the Indian territory from north-east of Srinagar, in Kargil
  • The conflict was a high altitude war, involving two heavily armed sides
  • There was always a threat that the conflict might escalate into a nuclear confrontation as both the sides possessed nuclear warfare
  • The conflict lasted from May – July 1999
  • The strategy behind the infiltration was to “internationalise” Kashmir conflict after decades-old Pakistan-sponsored insurgency in Kashmir failed to achieve something substantial and also to disrupt the strategic link between Srinagar and Leh
  • The Indian Air Force had drawn up plans to launch attacks deep inside Pakistan
  • The intrusion was a stab on peacetime diplomacy. The previous year Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had signed Lahore Declaration, which was an attempt to prevent a nuclear confrontation
  • The attempt to internationalise Kashmir did not help Pakistan, instead it was isolated by the international community. Even China did not come to support Pakistan
  • Following a meeting with the US President Bill Clinton on July 4, 1999, PM Sharif agreed to withdraw Pakistan’s support to the infiltrators
  • The casualties from Indian side was more than 400 and more than 700 infiltrators were killed    
  • Operation Vijay was launched on May 29, 1999, which was mainly driven by the army to flush out the infiltrators across Line of Control (LoC)
  • A review committee was set up by PM Vajpayee to look into the failure of intelligence. The committee was headed by strategic expert K Subrahmanyam.