1. When, Where, How
20 years ago, between May and July of 1999, was when Pakistan General Parvez Musharraf declared war on India, without the knowledge of the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
The attack was on the Kargil district of Jammu & Kashmir.
Pakistan troops had an advantage on the Indian jawans, as they had higher positions, and could fire on the soldiers on lower grounds.
With the help of local shepherds, the Indian Army could locate the Pakistani soldiers and were able to execute an incursion, leading to ‘Operation Vijay’.
2. Vijay Diwas
Kargil Vijay Diwas is celebrated every year on July 26, to commemorate the day in 1999 when the Indian Army won the Kargil War.
The victory came at a high price. The official death toll on the Indian side was 527, while that on the Pakistani side was between 357 and 453.
4. What Went On
The Pakistani soldiers and terrorists had an advantage in combat since they had positioned themselves at higher altitudes and could fire down at advancing Indian troops.
Pakistan shot down two Indian fighter jets while another fighter jet crashed during the operation.
The then-President Bill Clinton declined to intervene when Pakistan asked the US to do so, until Pakistani troops were withdrawn from the Line of Control.
As Pakistani troops withdrew, the Indian armed forces attacked the rest of the outposts, managing to get back the last of them by July 26.
5. After the War
Pakistan denied any involvement in the Kashmir attack, claiming that it was ‘Kashmiri freedom fighters’ that India had been facing. But when it later awarded medals of honor to its soldiers, there didn’t remain any doubt of its role in the war.
India increased its budget on defense after the war, but it led to some irregularities, like in the procurement of coffins for the dead martyrs of the war.
6. Gallantry Awards
* Grenadier Yogendra Singh Yadav, 18 Grenadiers, Param Vir Chakra
* Lieutenant Manoj Kumar Pandey, 1/11 Gorkha Rifles, Param Vir Chakra, Posthumous
* Captain Vikram Batra, 13 JAK Rifles, Param Vir Chakra, Posthumous (In pic)
* Rifleman Sanjay Kumar, 13 JAK Rifles, Param Vir Chakra
* Captain Anuj Nayyar, 17 JAT Regiment, Maha Vir Chakra, Posthumous
* Major Rajesh Singh Adhikari, 18 Grenadiers, Maha Vir Chakra, Posthumous
* Captain Haneef-u-ddin, 11 Rajputana Rifles, Vir Chakra, posthumous
* Major Mariappan Saravanan, 1 Bihar,
Vir Chakra, Posthumous
* Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja, Indian Air Force, Vir Chakra, Posthumous
* Hawaldar Chuni Lal, 8 JAK LI, Vir Chakra. Also awarded Sena Medal for gallantry and posthumously awarded Ashok Chakra as a Naib Subedar.