Dera Baba Nanak Bridge capturing anniversary organised
The Pioneer Dec.6,2006
Pioneer News Service | Chandigarh
Commemorating the anniversary of capturing of the Dera Baba Nanak Bridge by the Indian Army on December 5, 1971, the Dera Baba Nanak (DBN) Brigade organised a wreath laying ceremony at Batala and DBN War Memorials and a Barakhana in the Tibri cantonment on Tuesday.
Several retired officers, who fought the 1971 war, senior military and civil officers, including General Officer Commanding, Panther Division; Commander DBN Brigade; DC Gurdaspur, and officials from the police and paramilitary forces, attended the functions.
Named after the first Sikh Guru, Dera Baba Nanak is a strategically important town near the international border with Pakistan. At the time of outbreak of hostilities in 1971, a double-decker rail and road bridge over river Ravi connected Dera Baba Nanak to the Pakistani town of Narowal. The bridge was of strategic importance and was strongly held by Pakistan.
On December 5, 1971, the DBN Brigade was entrusted with the task of capturing the DBN Bridge to deny a launch pad to the enemy. The operation to capture DBN Bridge was codenamed 'Operation Akal' and 10 Dogra, 17 Rajput, 1/9 Gorkha Rifles, 71 Armoured Regiment, Company 4/8 Gorkha Rifles and 42 Field Regiment participated in the operation.
Displaying undaunted courage, initiative and leadership, the gallant men of the Brigade launched an offensive into enemy territory on the night of December 5, 1971, and finally captured the bridge by early morning of December 6, 1971.
On December 6, 1971, the Brigade had the proud privilege of being the first formation to hoist the tricolour in the captured territory of Western Pakistan. During the battle, enemy suffered killing of 34 personnel and 26 enemy soldiers were captured. Our forces suffered a loss of 10 killings, 32 wounded and three missing.
The Brigade was awarded the 'Battle Honour Of Dera Baba Nank' for successful accomplishment of 'Operation Akal' and the gallant officers and men of the Brigade were awarded three Mahavir Chakras, 7 Veer Chakras, 15 Sena Medals and 14 Mention in Despatches.
DBN Brigade also saluted the local population, which exhibited unflinching determination and extended tacit support to the DBN Brigade in inflicting a devastating defeat on the adversary.