Pakistan was created out of India in 1947 when both the countries became Independent from Great Britain. India-Pakistan Wars, name given to the series of conflicts between India and Pakistan. The most violent outbreaks came in 1947-48, 1965, 1971 and 1999. The roots of conflict lie in the hostility between Hindus and Muslims and initially, in the disposition of self-governing princely states. Further, several other reasons of conflicts are border dispute, Kashmir problem, Water dispute and terror controversy.
Reasons and Effects of India-Pakistan Wars are as follows:
1. Indo-Pakistan War 1947- 48:
- Kashmir Problem has been central to the dispute between India and Pakistan.
- In, 1947 when India was partitioned, Maharaja Hari Singh, the Hindu ruler of Muslim dominated Kashmir, dreamt of the Independent State of Kashmir.
However the partition riots broke out in Kashmir in September 1947 when Muslims were killed in Western part of Kashmir. This led people of this part to rebel against Maharaja and declared their own Azad Kashmir Government.
- Sensing it as an opportunity, Pakistan sent the Pakistani tribal armies to Kashmir which got into fifteen miles from the state’s capital, Srinagar.
- Alarmed at this intrusion, Maharaja asked India for assistance. However, India asked him to sign the Instrument of accession to India. Maharaja Hari Singh signed it and Sheikh Abdullah leader of National Conference of Kashmir assented, India accepted the merger of J & K to India. Finally, India sent its forces to Kashmir while Pakistan sent military aid to troopers aiding Azad Kashmir movement.
- The Indo-Pakistan War ended in a stalemate because PM Nehru of India pursued the idealistic path of using diplomatic means through the newly created United Nations Organisation to try and force Pakistan to withdraw its irregular forces from J & K. Also, UNSC resolutions 39 and 47 were not in India’s favour and Pakistan refused to abide by these resolutions.
- So, Pakistan now controls a part of J & K called “Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK) “in India and The Indian Kashmir is called “Indian Occupied Kashmir” in Pakistan.
This problem is one of the main simmering issues between both the nations.
2. Indo-Pakistan War of 1965:
The Indo-Pak War of 1965 was the culmination of a series of disputes between India and Pakistan.
- The partition of India even led to dispute over sharing of river waters. The water of nearly all the rivers – Indus, Chenab, Sutlej, Beas, and Ravi flowed from India. In 1948 India stopped water of these rivers.
- A dispute ensued and the Indus Water Treaty of 1960 signed between Nehru and Ayub Khan. After this Pakistan was to use waters of Jhelum, Chenab and Indus while India was to use the waters of Sutlej, Beas and Ravi.
- Then boundary commission tried to settle the border dispute. Dispute ensued over Rann of Kutch in 1965 Pakistan attacked near Kutch border. India referred dispute to UN. Seeing this as India’s weakness, Pakistan tried to outrage Kashmir. On 5 August, 1965 Pakistan stationed troops along the LOC.
- The War began following Pakistan’s Operation Gibraltar, which was designed to infiltrate irregular “Jihadi” forces into J & K to precipitate an insurgency against rule by India.
- War ended in a United Nations mandated ceasefire and the subsequent issuance of the Tashkent Declaration.
Note: Tashkent Declaration was signed between President Ayub Khan of Pakistan and Shastri an Indian Premier to solve all the disputes bilaterally and strive to live in peace. This agreement was signed on January 10, 1966.
However, at the conclusion of the War, many Pakistanis considered the performance of their military to be positive. 6 September is celebrated as Defence Day in Pakistan, in commemoration of successful defence of Lahore against the Indian Army.
After the Tashkent declaration the two sides of the nation got disillusioned and Z. A Bhutto, Pakistani’s premier said that ‘Hindu Culture’ was determined to devour ‘Islamic Culture’.
- Pakistan showed hard postures to solve Kashmir dispute.
- Pakistan allowed China to use road in Gilgit an area of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
- Disputes even emerged over the use of Ganga waters and construction of Farakka barrage.
- With this the relations between the two further reached at its lowest ebb in 1971, which results in the emergence of civil war in East Pakistan with lots of Chaos, So, now another war with Pakistan.
3. Indo-Pakistan War of 1971:
- After partition the East Wing of Bengal had joined Pakistan as East Pakistan and between the two parts of Pakistan was about 1200 miles of Indian Territory. Also, Pakistan’s military government did not pay much attention to East Pakistan and Urdu was imposed upon it.
- The immediate source of conflict was denial of the office of Premier to Sheikh Mujibur Rehman of East Bengal whose party had won 160 out of 300 seats in the 1970 elections.
- Pakistani leader Z.A Bhutto and President Yahya Khan denied rights to East Bengal.
- When Pakistan attacked Indian airfields in Kashmir, India attacked both East and West Pakistan.
- India occupied the eastern half, which declared its Independence as Bangladesh on 6 December, 1971.
- Both countries agreed to cease-fire and Z.A Bhutto emerged as a leader of Pakistan and Mujibur Rehman as first President of Bangladesh in 1972.
- Negotiations broke out between Indian Premier Indira Gandhi and Pakistani President Z.A Bhutto which led to the signing of Shimla Agreement in June 1972 for restoration of peace and order between the two states.
Shimla Accord objectives are:
- India was to seek peaceful solutions to disputes and problems through bilateral negotiations and neither India nor Pakistan would unilaterally change the existing situation.
- They will not use force against each other, nor violate the territory integrity, nor interfere in political freedom of each other.
Note: War of 1971 lasts 13 days and is considered to be one of the shortest wars in History- rivalled only by the Six Day War between the Arab’s and the Israelis.
4. Indo-Pakistan War of 1999:
- The cause of the War was the infiltration of Pakistani soldiers and Kashmiri militants into Kargil district of J & K and along the LOC (Line of Control).
- The intrusion into the area, that divided the Indian territory of Ladakh from the northern areas of the state, surprised the Indian army and Operation Vijay was launched immediately to flush out the enemies from the Kargil sector.
- Tiger Hill, one of the highest peaks in the Drass- Kargil area of the State, became the focal point during the War.
- Indian Air Force (IAF) joined this operation and finally, after the fierce War of more than 60 days, India recaptured Tiger Hill and pushed the Pakistani forces back to the territory.
- Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee signed Lahore Declaration with Nawaz Sharif the then Prime Minister of Pakistan on 21 February, 1999 to maintain peace and stability between their countries and for progress and prosperity of their peoples.