Arunachal Pradesh: Indian Army Hosts Fair To Commemorate Diamond Jubilee Celebrations Of ‘Battle Of Walong’ 

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Posted in Arunachal Pradesh, Featured, Northeast
NET Web Desk

The Indian Army is celebrating the 60th year of ‘Battle of Walong’ which stands as a commendable example of the unmatched valour & sacrifice made by the bravehearts of Indian Army in the face of a Chinese onslaught in 1962.

In commemoration of the ongoing Diamond Jubilee celebrations of the ‘Battle of Walong’, the Dao Division of Spear Corps has organized a Mela (fair) at Walong Circle of Arunachal Pradesh.

The fair was organized on Wednesday, to familiarize the public with the Indian Army and to encourage a sense of belongingness and togetherness.

According to an official release, the mela conducted at Walong encompassed a variety of scintillating sports and games events.

“The profuse response of the local residents during the Mela is a tribute to the sacrifices made by our Bravehearts to ensure peace in the region and also ensure its territorial integrity during the war with China. Food Stalls with sumptuous dishes featuring delicacies of various states of India was an added attraction of the mela,” the release said.

It highlighted the commendable contribution of the public to the security forces in maintaining peace and harmony along the region.

The month-long celebration includes lectures on Battle of Walong at Army War College, Mhow, Defence Services Staff College, Wellington and for general public at Kolkata.

Besides, a motorcycle rally flagged off from Tezpur visited the historical battlefields of 1962 collecting soils from these battle fields at Menchuka and Taksing, which will thereafter be instated at Walong War Memorial. The celebrations will culminate on November 17 at Walong.

It is worth noting that the 6 Kumaon was the only Indian Army unit to launch a counterattack on the Chinese soldiers with scant supplies and subpar weapons but unrestrained ferocity and aggression.

Under the command of Lieutenant Colonel CN Madiah, the 6 Kumaon fought the Chinese forces at Kibithoo and Walong with astounding bravery. The enemy forces had occupied Yellow Pimple, Green Pimple and other dominating heights to outflank the defences at Walong.

The 6 Kumaon was ordered to launch a counterattack and evict the enemy from these locations. Accordingly, on 14 November, 1962, the fearless Kumaoni warriors attacked the Chinese forces without adequate fire support.

The intense assault against the formidable Chinese resistance, which was backed by artillery bombardment, persisted throughout the entire day. When their ammunition ran out, the Kumaoni men turned to bayonet attacks and hand-to-hand battle, which resulted in numerous significant deaths for the opposition.

In order to reclaim the lost ground, the Chinese counterattacked in waves with superior forces during the night of 14/15 November. The enemy is claimed to have suffered heavy losses and eventually succeeded as there were no able bodied Kumaonis left to defend.

During the intense battle for Walong and Kibithoo, the 6 Kumaon had 391 casualties, including 115 killed, 109 wounded and 167 taken prisoners of war. Whereas, sources informed that the Chinese suffered 752 casualties, including 198 killed and 554 wounded.

For their tenacity and bravery, Major PN Bhatia, Captain RK Mathur, Captain BC Chopra, second lieutenant AS Khatri and naik Bahadur Singh were awarded with Vir Chakra.

However, there were unsung heroes during the war, like lieutenant Bikram Singh, who led his company of 6 Kumaon gallantly in both phases of the war.

On 16 November, over 3,000 enemy forces attacked West Ridge, held by Bikram and his company of 100 odd soldiers. Its fall would allow the Chinese to overrun Walong.

He was ordered to hold the post for half an hour. However, showing tenacity and valour, his troops held off the enemy attack for more than three hours. Under his leadership, the men fought until all of their ammunition was exhausted and they were completely overrun. There appeared to be no survivors of the battle, including lieutenant Bikram Singh.

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