Operation Somnath, known as Operation Dwarka, is undoubtedly a feather in the cap of the Pakistan Navy PN during the 1965 war. September 8th will be remembered for the daring attack on the ships of PN war on Dwarka and the containment of the entire Indian Navy IN fleet. by the submarine PN GHAZI.
On September 7, 1965, the PN attacked Dwarka, an Indian coastal town. For the first time, PN was pitted against a much larger and technologically advanced IN. The results of this operation opened a new chapter of bravery, courage and unwavering faith.
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Looking at the excerpts from the story
History is always there to serve as a beacon for those who are thirsty for knowledge. He has an incredible legacy for our generations to come to learn of the sacrifices and bravery of these men in white who sacrificed their today for the better future of our nation. It inspires, builds confidence, identifies historical events and contains lessons learned for all developments during the operation. However, the most complex historical events to examine are wars or violent conflicts. Especially when the Indo-Pakistani wars are discussed and contested academically, one can observe divergent views.
In the 1950s, Pakistan received little military aid from the West through SEATO and CENTO and limited naval aid. material purchases and supplies. Nevertheless, the arrival of an American TENCH-class submarine at PN in 1964 was a significant deterrent and game-changer. This submarine was called “Ghazi” and soon began patrolling the Indian Ocean.
Pakistan and India have long been at odds, and the latter’s size and relative power have made Pakistan’s security a top priority. Despite the imbalance in the power equation between the two countries, Pakistan has faced enormous challenges and fared better in difficult times. The supporting evidence is the remarkable achievements of Operation Somnath. The exemplary success of the said operation following the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965 is an example of this that has become a proud part of Pakistani history.
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What happened next ?
Dwarka is a coastal town in Gujarat located on the northwestern peninsula that has historically been crucial to India, not only religiously and culturally, but also militarily. During Operation Somnath, PN was tasked with achieving certain key objectives. The objective was to destroy the Indian surveillance capability by destroying the radar installations at Dwarka. It was also retained in principle to increase the radius of destruction not limited to tangible military paraphernalia only, but also to inflict serious damage to the morale of the Indian forces.
When the war was at its peak, the Indian Navy began to focus primarily on the West. He compelled Pakistan to protect its maritime borders in the Arabian Sea. Additionally, PN has been tasked with Safeguarding Maritime Lines of Communication (SLOC) for smooth commerce and business-like activities. Indian amphibious assaults were a possibility in the creek areas and estuaries of West and East Pakistan.
Essentially, the PN accomplished the aforementioned key objectives of Operation Somnath and assigned tasks with less logistical and naval technology than India. But the only exception was the first objective, which was not commissioned as the Indian Navy’s main fleet was in port carrying out necessary repairs. However, despite severe limitations and a mismatch of naval power, Operation Somnath became a symbol of PN professionalism.
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Operation Dwarka was a multi-faceted mission
It started a traditional naval war between Pakistan and India, with the PN proving its worth. Following the success of the operation, the Indian forces did not launch any retaliatory actions in air, naval or amphibious assaults on the coastline. The operation also tested PN operational readiness, coordination and accuracy.
The operation followed the plan and destroyed the city’s radars and other facilities, and ensured that no radio communication was administered, which it did. Above all, the said operation fractured the morale of the Indian Navy, as an Indian cruiser, INS Mysore, stationed nearby in Cochin, did not respond to the Pakistani attack.
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Discoveries from the annals of history reveal that the resounding success of the operation opened up new avenues and concerns for the national interest in obtaining modern technologies to enhance naval power. It includes the assault and navigation of the maritime territories of the coastal states of the region. The lesson of history is that PN has proven to be a reliable ‘Guardian’ of Pakistan’s vast maritime border. Due to its worldwide naval status, the PN acquired technology, increased operational capabilities, impeccable training standards and boosted morale.
The author is Assistant Professor at Maritime Center of Excellence (MCE) Pakistan Navy War College Lahore and holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the National Defense University, Islamabad. He can be contacted at [email protected]
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.