AWARD OF GALLANTRY AWARDS – INDO-PAK WAR OF 1971

This map contains my estimates of the units in...
OPERATION EAGLE: Is the code name for India’s Undeclared War on Pakistan that began on November 03, 1971 with military action in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. This map contains estimates of the units involved in the Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
MS-8466 CAPTAIN. R. Rudra Narasimham, AMC/SSC
MS-8466 CAPTAIN. R. Rudra Narasimham, Army Medical Corps/Short Service Regular Commission. During the Indo-Pak War of 1971, the Special Frontier Force under the Command of Major General Sujan Singh Uban conducted an independent military operation called Operation Eagle in The Chittagong Hill Tracts. It commenced on November 03, 1971. This Op Eagle was executed by Indian Prime Minister Srimati Indira Gandhi. Brigadier T S Oberoi was the Commander at the Force Headquarters in the operational area. Including myself, a total of six Medical Officers took part in this military operation. Four of us were recommended to receive Service Awards. Major PCM Mehta, Surgical Specialist, Dr. Major(Honorary) Ramesh Chandra, the Senior Medical Officer, Captain Ashok Kumar Jaiswal, Medical Officer of North Column, the Unit commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Prasanta Coomar Purkayastha of Garhwal Rifles received Vishisht Seva Medals as recommended. I was the only Medical Officer who was recommended the award of Vir Chakra. Major General Sujan Singh Uban, Brigadier TS Oberoi, Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan, the Regiment of Artillery Officer who was my South Column Unit Commander, and all others know the reasons as to why I was recommended to receive the Vir Chakra award and not some other award like Vishisht Seva Medal which the other three Medical Officers received. Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s military operation delivered the first blow in the Chittagong Hill Tracts to initiate the Liberation of Bangladesh with an act of Undeclared War.

SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE-OPERATION EAGLE 1971-LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH – GALLANTRY AWARD:

AWARD OF GALLANTRY AWARDS – OPERATION EAGLE(03 November 1971) – CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS – LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH. OPERATION EAGLE IS THE UNDECLARED WAR OF INDIA ON PAKISTAN.
This retired Indian Air Force Officer Parvez Jamaszi rendered service as a helicopter pilot in support of our battle action that is code-named Operation Eagle. He was awarded the Gallantry Award of Vir Chakra for his gallant actions. He had airlifted my battlefield casualties.
This retired Indian Air Force Officer Parvez Jamasji rendered service as a helicopter pilot in support of our battle action that is code-named Operation Eagle. He was awarded the Gallantry Award of Vir Chakra for his gallant actions. He airlifted my battlefield casualties.
November o4, 1971. Prime Minister Indira Gandhi sent us to Mizo Hills-Chittagong Hill Tracts Border between India and East Pakistan and met the U.S. President Richard Nixon at the White House. She made an earnest effort to get American support for our military mission. She didn't know that Dr. Henry Kissinger, the Secretary of State had secretly contacted China's Prime Minister and had directly encouraged Communist China to attack India across the Himalayan frontier and thwart our attempt to Liberate Bangladesh. China was too busy plotting the major "Tet" offensive in Vietnam to deliver a defeat to the U.S. Army. Our military operation proceeded as China had refused to frustrate our efforts.
November o4, 1971. Prime Minister Indira Gandhi sent us to Mizo Hills-Chittagong Hill Tracts Border between India and East Pakistan to launch an Undeclared War and met the U.S. President Richard Nixon at the White House. She made an earnest effort to get American support for our military mission. She didn’t know that Dr. Henry Kissinger, the Secretary of State had secretly contacted China’s Prime Minister directly encouraging Communist China to attack India across the Himalayan frontier and thwart our attempt to Liberate Bangladesh. China was too busy plotting the major “Tet” offensive in Vietnam to deliver a defeat to the U.S. Army apart from their power struggle which ended with the killing of China’s Defence Secretary. Our military operation proceeded as China refused to frustrate our efforts.
November 04. 1971. The United States, Tibet, and India are military partners of an alliance/pact that created Establishment No. 22/Special Frontier Force during November 1962. The United States was only opposed to the creation of Bangladesh because of its friendly relations with Pakistan. President Nixon continued to support Special Frontier Force and its mission to oppose the military threat posed by Communist China's occupation of Tibet. President Nixon as a gracious host entertained Prime Minister Indira Gandhi at the White House by hosting a performance by these New York City Ballet performers.
November 04. 1971. The United States, Tibet, and India are military partners of an alliance/pact that created Establishment No. 22/Special Frontier Force during November 1962. The United States was only opposed to the creation of Bangladesh because of its friendly relations with Pakistan. President Nixon continued to support Special Frontier Force and its mission to oppose the military threat posed by Communist China’s occupation of Tibet. President Nixon as a gracious host entertained Prime Minister Indira Gandhi at the White House by hosting a performance by these New York City Ballet performers. Operation Eagle, India’s Undeclared War on Pakistan was in progress while Indian Prime Minister was in Washington, D.C.
LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH – AWARD CEREMONY AFTER 40 YEARS. India’s Congress Party leader Ms. Sonia Gandhi receiving Bangladesh’s highest Award. This Liberation began with India’s Undeclared War on Pakistan that started with military action in the Chittagong Hill Tracts on November 03, 1971.
Major General Sujan Singh Uban, Inspector General of Special Frontier Force, was given the task of conducting a military operation in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and it was named Operation Eagle. His military mission, the Undeclared War of India on Pakistan was directly supervised by Srimati Indira Gandhi, the Prime Minister of India.

The Indo-Pak War of 1971 involved a War between India and Pakistan and the War was fought by the members of the armed forces on either side. In the Eastern Sector, the Indian Army military operation was planned and executed by Headquarters Eastern Command. I participated in Operation Eagle, a military operation in the Chittagong Hill Tracts which was, in reality, an Undeclared War of India on Pakistan. This military operation was planned personally by India’s Prime Minister, Srimati. Indira Gandhi. She personally approved the battle plan, the rules of engagement, and the issue of Marching Orders. She made all the critical decisions. The Prime Minister’s Office, the Cabinet Secretariat passed the executive orders and instructions for the conduct of this military operation. She never delegated her powers to other Staff members or assistants and exercised a tight control in the execution of all military acts as per the battle plan that was approved by her. In the history of the Republic of India, for the first time, the Prime Minister conducted a military operation of this magnitude using assistance from nontraditional fighting elements. This is of historical importance. I give her due credit for her bold initiative, qualities of leadership and her personal attention to all the critical aspects of our military mission. The records, the documents, the signal communications that directly pertain to Operation Eagle are not held at HQ Eastern Command and Army Headquarters in New Delhi. The Indian Army field commanders had no direct involvement in this Operation and they did not issue any orders for my participation or deployment for this military action. The Battle Plan of Operation Eagle includes the rules and conditions that formulated the eligibility criteria of its participants to receive Military Honours and Awards with or without any affiliation to the Indian Army or the Ministry of Defence. Under these eligibility criteria, several Civilian Officers serving in the Directorate General of Security of the Cabinet Secretariat received Military Honours and Awards in recognition of their service rendered during Operation Eagle. These include Shri. Sujan Singh Uban who received the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, Dr. Ramesh Chandra who received the Vishisht Seva Medal, Shri. Tara Chand Pande who received the Vishisht Seva Medal, and Shri. G B Velankar who received the Gallantry Award of Vir Chakra.

I, MS-8466 Captain. R. Rudra Narasimham, AMC/SSC served as Medical Officer at Headquarters Establishment No. 22 C/O  56  APO from September 1971 to December 1974.

During the Indo-Pak War of 1971, I participated in a mission described as ‘difficult’ and ‘hazardous’. I provided medical support to the troops operating in the roadless, forest terrain of Chittagong Hill Tracts. My Commander, Major General Sujan Singh Uban, AVSM, the Inspector General of Special Frontier Force published a book titled ‘The Phantoms of Chittagong: The Fifth Army in Bangladesh’. General Uban narrated the difficult nature of his military mission and the successful accomplishment of his task.

For the Courage, Determination, Resolve, and Confidence displayed while operating inside the enemy territory, I was recommended the award of ‘VIR CHAKRA’. The Citation recommending this Gallantry Award was initiated by Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan of the Regiment of Artillery, the Commander of the South Column Unit of Operation Eagle. The military act that won recognition involved courage in the performance of military duties with minimal protection while facing the threat from  two different sources; 1. the threat of enemy forces in the area, and 2. the threat of Mizo rebels who operated on both sides of the border between India, and Pakistan in that area.

The risks of conducting a medical evacuation of battlefield casualties( which is the responsibility of the Force headquarters and not of the South Column) were fully understood by the Unit Commander and the Force Commander Brigadier T S Oberoi and SFF Commander Major General Sujan Singh Uban. When the Force Headquarters failed to execute its Medical Evacuation Plan, the Unit was assigned this difficult task. The Unit Commander did not order me to personally direct this medical evacuation and escort the battle wounded to their destination. I, on my own initiative, responded to this challenge and went beyond the Call of his Duty to complete the task without exposing my medical staff( Nursing Assistants ) to any additional risks imposed by the battlefield casualty evacuation.

Apart from my role as a doctor, I performed the duties of the Army Medical Corps Nursing Assistants who provide nursing care and comfort during the process of medical evacuation. In the Annual Confidential Report for 1971-72 initiated by Lieutenant Colonel. B K Narayan, my performance during the 1971 War was very warmly appreciated. The fact of a recommendation made to confer gallantry award was duly recorded. 

Colonel Iqbal Singh of the Regiment of Artillery served as the Chief of Staff at the Force Headquarters of Op Eagle. During 1972, I was posted to a Unit Commanded by Colonel Iqbal Singh. I applied for the grant of Direct Permanent Commission(DPC) in the Army Medical Corps. In his remarks on that application, Colonel Iqbal Singh gave a very detailed account of my performance during the 1971 War. During the AMC Examination of September 1972, I was interviewed by the Director General of Armed Forces Medical Services(DGAFMS) in the presence of a Selection Committee. When questioned by the DGAFMS, I narrated my role in providing medical support to troops involved in a difficult Operation. The DGAFMS openly praised my performance and concluded the interview with no further questions. I was granted Direct Permanent Commission in the AMC with effect from March 07, 1973 and allotted the Personal Number MR-03277 K.

I did not receive not the Gallantry Award for which I am duly recommended. The reasons stated by the Ministry of Defence were flimsy and at the best ridiculous. The reason for not conferring the award was communicated to South Column of Operation Eagle; the reason stated was that of the delay in submitting the Citation. The Medical Directorate, the Office of The Director of Medical Services(Army) delayed forwarding the Award Citation to the Military Secretary’s Branch of Army Hqrs, Ministry of Defence.

Operation Eagle established specific criteria and eligibility requirements for recognition to receive Service Medals, Honours, and Awards. We followed those rules given by the Prime Minister and the Cabinet Secretariat. The Award Citation was sent direct to Army Headquarters Medical Directorate and did not use the Staff channels that Units operating under the command of HQ Eastern Command would have used. 

In my view, a Gallantry Award is not the equivalent of winning a Prize in a Lucky Draw. Further, it must be noted that the “History cannot be rewritten”.

Lieutenant Governor of Andaman and Nicobar Islands – Lieutenant General(Retd) TS Oberoi, PVSM, VrC( the tall person wearing a dark brown turban). Prior to this appointment, General Oberoi was the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief at Headquarters Southern Command, Pune. I knew him since my participation in Operation Eagle 1971. The Liberation of Bangladesh commenced under his able leadership. After the successful conclusion of Operation Eagle, he was promptly promoted to the rank of Major General and was appointed as the Inspector General of Special Frontier Force. He exudes personal warmth at all times. People around him can always feel it. When I boarded an aircraft to proceed to the Chittagong Hill Tracts, he was present to greet us individually and he did not allow the aircraft to takeoff before a hot breakfast was served to all the men. Apart from military wisdom, he was a Commander who truly cared for the men under his Command. When I got married in January 1973, he sent me a long personal letter to give his good wishes. Photo Credit – Trishna-Ajay-Picasa Web Album. General Oberoi’s grandson shared this photo.
Remarks of Lieutenant General T S Oberoi, PVSM, VrC, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Headquarters Southern Command Pune 411001. He was the field Commander of Operation Eagle 1971 in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. He served at Headquarters Establishment No. 22 C/O 56 APO as the Commandant.





The remarks made by Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan, the Commander of South Column Operation Eagle(dated May 13, 1972) in my Annual Confidential Report for 1971-72 are as follows: “A very conscientious and Tough MO who worked hard during the Bangladesh OPs. He did very well and showed Maturity which was beyond the call of duty. I have recommended this Officer for a gallantry award for which he deserves eminently. He is physically Tough and cheerful. Is a fresh entrant with less than 2 years of Service and yet he displayed capability and confidence.
The Prime Minister whom I knew. The first posting of my Indian Army Medical Corps Career took me to the Special Frontier Force, the Directorate General of Security Establishment No. 22 that operates under the directives issued by the Prime Minister’s Cabinet Secretariat. Indira Gandhi’s Operation Eagle delivered the first blow during 1971 to initiate the Liberation of Bangladesh.

Lieutenant General T S Oberoi, the Southern Army Commander during 1983, the former Inspector General of Special Frontier Force is seen in this photo wearing a helmet. The photo was taken during 1982 while he visited Army Service Corps Centre, Bangalore.
The Flag of Indian Army Medical Corps. AMC must put this memorable Battlefield Medical Evacuation March in 1971 in its History Books to inspire other AMC Medical Officers to train and acquire the professional skills of Medical Assistant and Ambulance Assistant to give better service to the battle wounded in any future War.
The Flag of Indian Army Medical Corps.Operation Eagle 1971 in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. AMC must put this memorable Battlefield Medical Evacuation March in 1971 in its History Books to inspire other AMC Medical Officers to train and acquire the professional skills of Medical Assistant and Ambulance Assistant to give better service to the battle wounded in any future War.
Sangram Medal 1971. Evidence for my participation in the Indo-Pak War of 1971.
Sangram Medal 1971. Evidence for my participation in Operation Eagle 1971 in the Chittagong Hill Tracts during the Indo-Pak War of 1971.
Poorvi Star 1971. It is evidence of my participation in the Indo-Pak War of 1971.
Poorvi Star 1971. It is evidence of my participation in Operation Eagle 1971 in the Chittagong Hill Tracts during the Indo-Pak War of 1971.
Sterling Sub-Machine Gun Mk4
I was trained in the use of a 9 mm SMG or Sten Gun. I had chosen to march into enemy territory without my personal weapon to defend myself. I did not throw away my weapon and I did not surrender my weapon to the enemy which are crimes under law. War is a team effort. My contribution to this team effort is not based upon firing bullets from my Sten Gun. I had totally discarded any concerns about my personal safety and worked for the success of the team. I have shown Courage by not carrying this Sten Gun and in following my team like a shadow and confronting the enemy as a TEAM.
I was trained in the use of a 9 mm SMG or Sten Gun. During Operation Eagle in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, I chose to march into enemy territory without my personal weapon to defend myself. I did not throw away my weapon and I did not surrender my weapon to the enemy which are crimes under law. War is a team effort. My contribution to this team effort is not based upon firing bullets from my Sten Gun. I followed my team like a shadow and confronted the enemy as a TEAM.
American made High-Explosive Fragmentation Mark II Hand Grenade. Pakistan's Army uses this type of hand grenades. During the Indo-Pak War of 1971, I had collected two such hand grenades at the enemy post that we had captured. I had removed the Detonator to safely handle the grenade. I took them home and presented them to my father as a piece of evidence to support my claim that I had actually participated in the War. My father was afraid to keep my evidence. The Grenades were buried in Alcott Gardens, Rajahmundry.
American made High-Explosive Fragmentation Mark II Hand Grenade. OPERATION EAGLE 1971.  Pakistan’s Army uses this type of hand grenades. During Operation Eagle, the India-Pakistan War of 1971, I collected two such hand grenades at the enemy post that we captured. I removed the Detonator to safely handle the grenade. I took them home and presented them to my father as a piece of evidence of my participation in the War. My father was afraid to keep my evidence. The Grenades were buried in Alcot Gardens, Rajahmundry.
Made in China High-Explosive Fragmentation Hand Grenade found during Operation Eagle 1971. Chinese Army uses the same hand grenades. Pakistan receives arms and ammunition from Communist China apart from the massive military aid it receives from the United States of America. In the Indo-Pak War of 1971, we captured enemy posts and recovered arms and ammunition that were made in China.
Shrimati. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, the President of India
Shrimati. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, the President of India. The President’s Secretariat did not act upon my grievance/petition about the award of gallantry awards – Operation Eagle 1971. It simply forwarded my grievance to the wrong Department. My grievance must be reviewed by the Cabinet Secretariat who possess my Service Records that pertain to my participation in the Indo-Pak War of 1971.

The President’s Secretariat established a Helpline to receive requests and grievances from the public. I requested the President of India to review the decision made by the Ministry of Defence in 1971 and complained that the act of rejecting the Citation to award VIR CHAKRA in recognition of my courageous performance inside enemy territory, was ‘unfair’ and ‘unjust’. The President’s Secretariat registered my grievance and issued the following Grievance Registration Number: PRSEC/E/2009/05526.

I stated that I will not give up my claim for the Gallantry Award and this recognition would benefit other members of Indian Army Medical Corps and would inspire them to distinguish themselves in providing comfort and in boosting up the morale of our fighting men and women of our Armed Forces.

THE STATUS OF GRIEVANCE PETITION TO THE PRESIDENT OF INDIA: AUGUST 31, 2009

On August 31, 2009, The President’s Secretariat transferred my petition to the Ministry of Defence. For further information in this matter, I was asked to directly discuss with Shri. Anand Misra, Joint Secretary ( Estt&PG ), Room No. 97, South Block, Ministry of Defence, New Delhi. His telephone number is 237 92043. His e-mail address is: jse@nic.in

THE STATUS OF GRIEVANCE PETITION TO THE PRESIDENT OF INDIA: DECEMBER 03, 2009 :

OPERATION EAGLE 1971-Government of India, Ministry of Defence claims that Honours and Awards are conferred within a specific period from the date of the act. For every act, there are two parties involved. I acted on behalf of the Government of India and my action was directed against the Government of Pakistan. At this belated stage, after the lapse of over 32 years, what would be the view of the Government of Pakistan about this act?

Indian Army HQ gave me a similar response 32 years ago. The Award ‘Citation’ never reached the MS Branch on the stipulated date. Two infantry Officers of my Unit were awarded ‘Vir Chakra’ for the same incident in which I participated. As a Medical Officer, I know the technique described as “EXHUMATION”. The word ‘exhume’ means to dig out of the earth or disinter and the process helps to bring something hidden to ‘light’. The ‘truth’ of this over 32 years old incident is buried in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. I know the exact place where the ‘truth’ is buried. I may have to dig out of the earth and show this truth and let the truth speak for itself.

Published by Bhavanajagat

Whole Man - Whole Theory: "I am Consciousness, Therefore I am" is my proposition to examine the reality of Man and the World in which he exists.

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6 Comments

  1. I am Padamdev Singh, Son of No. 3948143 Hav. Kushal Singh of 3rd Battalion of Dogra Regiment.In Indo Pak War 1971, my father was reported missing on 8th Nov. 1971 in Bangladesh while helping Mukti Bahini.

    Kindly permit me to share his name and service information.

    Like

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