The battle of Laungewala has been the most controversial battle of the 1971 War. It has been debated and discussed the most in print as well as visual media, particularly after the release of the film “Border’ in April 1997. The author, then a major, commanding No.12 (Indep) Air OP Flight along with Captain PS Sangha was in the thick of the battle on December 5, 1971.
Commencing at first light when all the enemy tanks were intact, first Sangha directed four Hunter mission during two sorties ending at 1215 hours. Then this author was up in the air from 1035 hours till 1330 hours when he had to force-land on the helipad in no-man’s-land after directing the fifth Hunter mission.
Then he stayed around Laungewala on the ground till 1530 hours and directed the sixth Hunter mission from the helipad through the Krishak RT at 1515 hours, decimating the enemy thrust completely.
After briefing the GOC, he was back at Laungewala and retrieved the Krishak from the helipad by manhanding after last light. Thus, this is the most authentic and credible blow-by-blow account of the battle which should set any controversy at rest.
Author: Maj Gen Atma Singh, VrC
Features: Black and White Photo, HB, English Book