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Discovery to commemorate 50th year of 1965 Indo–Pak war with special show

MUMBAI: Marking the 50th anniversary of the 1965 India–Pakistan war, Discovery Channel will present a special show ‘1965: India’s Battles and Heroes’, which will recount the valour and sacrifice of the Indian soldiers who put their lives on the line in defence of the country.

The one-hour programme will air on 14 September at 9 pm and will narrate the complete story of the war by using archival footage, reconstructions, and first-hand experiences of the 1965 war survivors. The show will also air on Discovery HD World at the same time.

It will capture the circumstances of the battle and each milestone, highlighting the various war equipment used during the war and challenges encountered. It will also recount the battle fought on the ground and in the air.

Discovery Networks Asia Pacific EVP and GM South Asia Rahul Johri said, “’1965: India’s Battles and Heroes’ will recount the war through the eyes of the soldiers who were at the battlefront. It will piece together the circumstances of the war and the bravery of the war heroes through rare archival footage and captivating narration.”

The special programme will present the sequence of battles alongside the stories of the war heroes who led these battles, brought victories, and eventually left behind memories fighting for their regiments and their countrymen.

Some of the war heroes covered in the programme include Lt Col AB Tarapore, Major Bhupinder Singh, Major RS Dyal, Lt Col Desmond Hayde, Company Quarter Master Havildar (CQMH) Abdul Hamid, Squadron Leader Denzil Keelor, and Flying Officer VK Nebb.

The show will start with the war in the Rann of Kutch in August triggered by Pakistan under the aegis of Operation Desert Hawk. This led to a ceasefire in April 1965 brokered by British Prime Minister Harold Wilson. Thereafter, in August 1965, Operation Gibraltar was launched by Pakistan where Pakistani soldiers in civilian outfits crossed the Line of Control in Jammu & Kashmir.

After this, the Indian Army launched Operation Bakshi, which saw the Indian soldiers capture the Haji Pir Pass, the main route for infiltration into Kashmir.

The show then takes the audience through the launch of Operation Grand Slam by Pakistan to take the border town of Akhnoor. Soon after this victory, Indian Prime Minister Shastri in his radio broadcast told the citizens to be prepared for a long battle ahead.

The 1965 heroes who survived the war will reminisce about their tales of valour, the war-room strategies, the achievements, and sacrifices made by the Indian soldiers. These include Colonel JS Bindra (Retd), Brigadier VK Vaid (Retd), Brigadier Jasbir Singh Hundal (Retd), Lt Gen. Ajai Singh (Retd), Brigadier Kanwaljeet Singh (Retd), Major General BR Varma (Retd), Wing Commander VK Nebb (Retd) and Air Marshall Denzil Keelor (Retd).