MUHAMMAD ADNAN KHAN

The war of 1965 lasted for 17 days but in actual it was all over from the point of view of Pakistan Air Force after first twelve days on 19 Sep 1965.  On this last day a formation of eight Indian aircraft (four Hunters and four Gnats) entered the Pakistani Air Space.  Four F-86s of PAF destroyed two Indian Air Force Hunters over Lahore and thumped the last nail in the coffin box of the Indian Air Force.  The other pilots in this formation were Flight Lieutenant Azhar-ul-Malik, Fligh Lieutenant Syed Nazir Ahmed Jilani and Flight Lieutenant Amanullah Khan.  This was the famous fight watched by the Lahorites during 1965 war.  The brave sons of Pakistan Air Force did not let the Indians invade Pakistan.

Indians had advanced into Lahore area and released the pictures of a Pakistani burnt bus captured at Batapur, giving an impression to the world that Lahore has been captured by Indians.  Lahore could have fallen to India, had the Pakistan Air Force not responded in time.  At 0940 hrs on 6 Sep, 1965 six PAF fighters destroyed the Indian armour advancing towards Lahore.

Right after the Indian invasion on the night of 6-7 September Indians immediately launched offencive against the Pakistani Air Fields. 

To counter these Indian offencives PAF aircraft were diverted towards them but all of these Indian aircraft fled the air battle.  During these ill conceived and ill planned Indian attacks, only one bomb damage was reported at Rawalpindi city.

Pakistan Air Force is counter offencives started at 1700 hrs on 7 September by attacking enemy airfields and installations.  Enemy was taken by surprise due to the will and force with which the small air force of Pakistan struck back.  a formation comprising of eight F-86 aircraft, attacked the Pathankot airfield.  During the air strike 12 Indian aircraft were destroyed.  They included 7 Migs 21s and 5 Mysteres. In addition two C-119 transport planes and the air traffic control Squadron was badly damaged.  

At 1715 hrs Squadron Leader Sarfaraz Rafiqui, Flight Lieutenant Cecil Chaudhry and Flight Lieutenant Younus Hussain attacked Halwarra.  They destroyed five hunters before Rafiqui and Younus embraced Shahadat. 

In the eastern wing there was only one PAF Fighter Squadron deployed in Dacca.  The brave sons of No 14 squadron chopped off the tail of Indian Air Force and earned the title of “tail choppers”.  The squadron attacked Kalaikunda air base at 0631 hrs on 7 September and destroyed eleven Canberas, damaged four Canberras and two Hunters on ground.  In the second strike at 1030 hrs the same day four PAF pilots destroyed three Indian Canberras and one C-119 aircraft on ground.  In addition one Hunter was also damaged in the aerial fight. 

On 8 September 1965 No 230 controller squadron at Rahwali reported that it was being attacked by four Indian Mysteres.  Two F-104s were diverted to meet the Indian inruders.  On seeing the vigil of the Pakistani tigers the Indians as usual fled the battlefield.  PAF pilots managed to destroy one of the Mysteres.  The kill was confirmed by the Rahwali controller. 

At 0605 hrs a formation of six Indian Hunters invaded Sargodha.  Flight Lieutenant M M Alam and his three comrades immediately challenged these intruders.  Out of the six Indian Mysteres five were shot by M M Alam creating a world history of killing four aircraft within four seconds.   

At 1525 hrs two Indian Mysteres attacked Sargodha.  No damage was done to Sargodha but one Mystere was shot by Pakistani F-86s in air.  Throughout the day the Indian technique was based upon tree top entry and exit.  For the attack they pulled unto 400-500 feet and made a shallow diving attack of 5-6 degrees, over flying the airfields and firing their weapons indiscriminately. 

On the nights of 7-8 September 1965 enemy aircraft raided Sargodha, Chak Jhumra and Risalewala airfields but their dropped bombs fell far from the desired targets.  The day completed the dominance of the air supremacy of Pakistan Air Force over the Indian Air Force.  The dawn of eighth September 1965 saw all offensive missions of Indian Air Force turning into disappearances.  Following is the detail of these unsuccessful attempts by Indian Air Force.

a.    At 0934 hrs two hunters were reported north of Lahore.  One Pakistani F-104 was diverted to challenge them.  On feeling the presence of Pakistani F-104 they did not enter the Pakistani Air Space.

b.    At 1124 hrs two enemy aircraft from Halwarra tried to enter Pakistani Air Space from Kasur.  However on seeing the Pakistani F-86s in air they ran away.

c.    A raid was reported from Lahore side however the presence of Pakistani f-86s did not materialize this Indian air raid a success. 

d.    At 1354 hrs a foe fighter was reported over Kasur and the vigilant       F-86s ensured it does not enter Pakistani area.

e.    At 1641 hrs a jet fighter tried to enter the Pakistani territory five miles south east of Lahore.  Two F-86s reached the site and the enemy retreated. 

On the night of 8-9 September, 1965 Indian Canberra’s tried to attacked Chak Jhumra, Sheikhupura and Sakesar but did not succeed in any of these attempts.  After 9 September Indians learnt they cannot strike inside Pakistan due to presence of Pakistani jet fighters. 

After ensuring air supremacy and crippling the Indian Air Force, now was the turn of Pakistan Air Force to strike deep inside India.  On 11 September one formation of PAF pilots destroyed the Amritsar radar, thus blinding the Indians for any support inside Pakistan.  Another formation of PAF pilots destroyed an Indian train carrying ammunition for the forward lines of Indian troops.   On 21 September a formation of destroyed the enemy guns camoglagued in the border area of Lahore.  The same day another formation destroyed enemy artillery heavy guns in the Wagah Attari sector posing threat to the Pakistan army. 

The quick response of Pakistan Air Force turned the enemy’s dreams of crushing Pakistan into nightmares.  The war of 1965 is said to be won by three as Allah, Air Force and Artillery.