Public Diplomacy Public Diplomacy

Clarifications on LoC

July 02, 1972

Delineation of the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir
resulting from the Cease fire on 17 December 1971 in accordance with the Simla Agreement of 02 July 1972

General

  • The representatives of the Chiefs of Army Staff of India and Pakistan held a series of meetings alternately at Suchetgarh, on the Indian side and Wagah Check Post, on the Pakistan side, to delineate the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir resulting from the cease fire of 17 December 1971 in accordance with Paragraph 4 (ii) of the Simla Agreement signed between the Govt of India and the Govt of Pakistan on 02 July 1972.
  • A copy of the relevant extracts of Simla Agreement is at Appendix A attached.

    Schedule of Various Meetings
  • The delineation of the Line of Control was effected during nine meetings as follows:-
    Dates Venue
    (a) First Meeting 10-12 August 1972 Suchetgarh
    (b) Second Meeting 21-22 August 1972 Wagah
    (c) Third Meeting 28-29 August 1972 Suchetgarh
    (d) Fourth Meeting 03-15 Sept. 1972 Wagah
    (e) Fifth Meeting 18 Sept. - 01 Oct. 1972 Suchetgarh
    (f) Sixth Meeting 07-08 October 1972 Wagah
    (g) Seventh Meeting 14-22 October 1972 Suchetgarh
    (h) Eighth Meeting 07-09 November 1972 Wagah
    (i) Ninth and Final Meeting 11 December 1972 Suchetgarh

    Composition of Indian and Pakistani Delegations

  • The composition of the two delegations were as under:-
    Indian Delegation Pakistan Delegation
    Lt Gen PS Bhagat, PVSM, VC Lt Gen Abdul Hameed Khan, S Pk, SQA
    Maj Gen MR Rajwade, VSM, MC Brig SM Abbasi
    Maj Gen IS Gill, PVSM, MC Col Mahmud Shaukat
    Col CM Sahni Col Syed Refaqat, TQA
    Lt Col MS Chahal, VSM Lt Col MM Afzal Khan
    Lt Col BM Tewari Lt Col Ahmad Saeed


    Methodology of Delineation
  • The Line of Control was reproduced on two sets of maps prepared by each side, each set consisting of 27 map sheets formed into 19 mosaics. Each individual mosaic of all four sets of maps with the Line of Control marked on them has been signed by the representatives of the Chiefs of Army Staff of India and Pakistan and each side has exchanged one set of signed mosaics as required under the joint statement by the representative of Govt of India and Pakistan signed at Delhi on 29 August 1972.
  • A copy of the document is being displayed for perusal.

    Evidence to disprove Pakistan's contention that the Line of Control is not delineated
  • Jointly Attested Mosaics of the Line of Control: Mosaics of the Line of Control duly signed by Lt Gen Abdul Hameed Khan, S Pk, SQA of the Pakistan Army and Lt Gen PS Bhagat, PVSM, VC of the Indian Army are held by both sides. The original copies of the Mosaics are displayed and a miniaturised copy of one such Mosaic is attached as Appendix B for perusal.
  • Delineation of the Line of Control on a Pakistani Map: A Pakistan Map, Scale 1,50,000. Sheet No. 43 N/15, First Edition published under the direction of Major General Anis Ali Syed St(M), afwc, B.Sc (C.E) HONS, M.Sc. M.A.S.C.E., F.I.E., Surveyor General of Pakistan, with the Line of Control duly printed, recovered from one of the recaptured positions is displayed. 9. Satellite Imagery/Air Photographs: A Satellite Imagery of the area of instant operations, taken during October 1998, reveals that there was no military activity in the area also on intrusion. The Satellite Imagery is being displayed. Air Photographs of the area also highlight the Regular Posts on both sides of the Line of Control, thus substantiating the fact that the troops on ground were aware of the alignment of Line of Control. Relevant Air Photographs are being displayed for perusal. Pakistan in the last 27 years, has never disputed the delineation jointly ratified by the two representatives of the Chiefs of Army Staff of India and Pakistan. As such, this is a deliberate attempt to mislead and cover up the armed intrusion across the Line of Control by Pakistan Army.

Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir A Part of Simla Agreement

It is a bit surprising to read in newspapers that some people in Pakistan have expressed a doubt that the Line of Control in Kashmir is vague. These statements indicate complete innocence about the meticulous care and thoroughness with which this Line was discussed, surveyed where necessary, identified on ground and delineated on maps giving detailed grid references and description of land marks. These were checked and re-checked before representatives of the two countries signed the documents pertaining to this Line and which were thereafter approved both Governments of India and Pakistan. It is necessary to describe the whole process for those who are not aware of how this crucial matter was handled.

The Simla Agreement stipulated that in Jammu & Kashmir, the Line of Control separating the two Armies on the day of cease-fire will be delineated. India and Pakistan very carefully selected senior military commanders to shoulder this historic responsibility. On the Indian side the team captain was the well known, highly respected, gallant soldier scholar, Lt Gen PS Bhagat, PVSM, Victoria Cross and on Pakistan side the highly respected veteran and a man of sterling character Lt Gen Hameed Khan, S Pk, SQA. It was a fortunate coincidence that Bhagat and Hameed knew each other since their days in the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun. Consequently they worked on the difficult, time consuming and laborious mission with trust, utter frankness and mutual regard and respect. General Bhagat's team included the then Director Military Operations, Maj Gen IS Gill, PVSM, MC. known in the Indian Army as a man of 24-carat-gold for his sterling qualities. Similarly, on the Pakistani side was the then Director Military Operations, Brig SM Abbasi, scion of the princely family of Bahawalpur. Included in the teams were also Deputy Directors of Survey of India and Pakistan with adequate number of trained survey personnel and survey equipment. The senior military commanders of the two sides were assisted by three sector commanders along the entire length of 740 Km of Line of Control which was divided in three segments namely the Southern Sector, the Central Sector and the Northern Sector. In turn, sector commanders were assisted by sub sector commanders to do the ground work on the entire Line of Control. For Example, in the Northern Sector were included the four Sub Sector Commanders of Partapur Sub Sector, Kargil Sub Sector (including Batalik), Shingo (Kaksar) Sub Sector and Drass Sub Sector which are the areas of current conflict. Sector and Sub Sector commanders of the two countries worked in close co-operation.

A total of nine meetings were held beween the senior military commanders of the two countries and their teams between 10 Aug 72 and 11 Dec 72, alternatively at Suchetgarh near Jammu, and Wagah near Amritsar. At each meeting the inputs of sub sectors were discussed, the sticky poins resolved and where necessary, a joint survey was ordered to ensure that nothing was left vague or uncertain. It is pertinent to add that there were some issues which had to be resolved by the Army Chiefs of India and Pakistan and for these both the meetings were held at Lahore in Nov and Dec 72 between Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw and General Tikka Khan. All issues were amicably resolved.

In the whole exercise two sets of maps each comprising of 27 maps were prepared. These marked maps were joined and 19 mosaics were prepared, thus clearly delineating the entire stretch of Line of Control running through 740 Km starting from Sangam and ending at Pt NJ-9842. Besides the maps, there were 19 Annexures consisting of 40 pages, giving the details of every feature, landmark and coordinates of the Line of Control. The delineated Line of Control was jointly prepared and signed by two senior military commanders, Lt Gen PS Bhagat and Lt Gen Hameed Khan. These documents were jointly signed and exchanged by the two senior military commanders on 11 Dec 72 at Suchetgarh.

Immediately after signing of the delineation maps and documents at the final meeting of senior military commanders on 11 Dec 72, the DMO flew to New Delhi and reported to the COAS alongwith copies of the signed delineation proceedings and one copy of the signed maps at 1500 hours 11 Dec 72. The COAS presented these at a meeting of the Political Affairs Committee of the Cabinet at 16 hours the same day. At 1620 hours a message was received from Mr Aziz Ahmed, Special Assistant to the President of Pakistan for Mr PN Haksar, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, informing him that the Government of Pakistan had accorded its approval to the Joint Recommenations submitted by the senior military commanders of Pakistan and India on that day in regard to delineation of the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir. This message was passed to the COAS at Parliament House and at 1747 hours the DMO informed the DMO Pakistan Army on the telephone that the Government of India had accorded its approval to the Joint Recommendations in regard to the delineation proceedings.

At 0700 hours on 17 Dec 72 the mutually agreed statement was released in New Delhi and Islamabad. At 2100 hours on 20 Dec 72, a joint statement by the Indian and Pakistan Governments was released to the media regarding withdrawal of troops to the International Border and delineation in conformity with the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir.

In view of the facts explained above, there should be absolutely no reason for any reservation in anyone's mind in India or Pakistan that there is anything vague or uncertain about the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir. It is pertinent to add that for a period of over 27 years, the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir has stood the test of time. There have been frequent clashes as well as exchange of fire which were invariably discussed and resolved in flag meetings of the two sides. The authenticity of the Line of Control was never questioned. It is worthwhile adding that each flag meeting invariably developed into a competition in hospitality!

It is also appropriate to take a close look on the wording of Paragraph dealing with the sanctity of the Line of Control of the Simla Agreement which reads as under:-

"In order to initiate the process of the establishment of durable peace. Both the Governments agree that: In Jammu and Kashmir, the Line of Control resulting from cease fire on 17th December, 1971 shall be respected by both sides without prejudice to the recognised position of either side. Neither side shall seek to alter it unilaterally, irrespective of mutual differences and legal interpretations. Both sides undertake to refrain from threat of use of force in violation of this Line."

[The Writer Lt Gen (Dr) ML Chibber, was Deputy Director of Military Operations after 1971 War and later C-in-C Northern Command when Pakistan was prevented from occupying Soltero Ridge and Siachen Glacier]

Extract of Simla Agreement pertaining to Line of Control

4. In order to initiate the process of the establishment of durable peace, both the Governments agree that:

(i) Indian and Pakistani forces shall be withdrawn to their side of the international border.

(ii) In Jammu and Kashmir, the line of control resulting form the cease-fire of December 17, 1971, shall be respected by both sides without prejudice to the recognised position of either side. Neither side shall seek to alter it unilaterally, irrespective of mutual differences and legal interpretations. Both sides further undertake to refrain from the threat or the use of force in violation of this line.

(iii) The withdrawals shall commence upon entry into force of this agreement and shall be completed within a period of 30 days thereof.

5. This agreement will be subject to ratification by both countries in accordance with their respective constitutional procedures, and will come into force with effect from the date on which the instruments of ratification are exchanged.

6. Both Governments agree that their respective heads will meet again at a mutually convenient time in the future and that, in the meanwhile the representatives of the two sides will meet to discuss further the modalities and arrangements for the establishment of durable peace and normalisation of relations including the questions of repatriation of prisoners of war and civilian internees, a final settlement of Jammu and Kashmir and the resumption of diplomatic relations.

(INDIRA GANDHI)
Prime Minister Republic of India

(ZULFIKAR ALI BHUTTO)
President Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

Simla, the 22nd of July, 1972



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