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Learn how and when to remove this template message The terrain of Kashmir is mountainous and at high altitudes; even the best roads, such as National Highway 1 India NH1 from Srinagar to Leh, are only two lanes.

The rough terrain and narrow roads slowed down traffic, and the high altitude, which affected the ability of aircraft to carry loads, made control of NH 1 the actual stretch of the highway which was under Pakistani fire a priority for India. Indian soldiers after winning a battle during the Kargil War The infiltrators, apart from being equipped with small arms and grenade launchers , were also armed with mortars , artillery and anti-aircraft guns.

The majority of posts along the LOC were adjacent to the highway, and therefore the recapture of nearly every infiltrated post increased both the territorial gains and the security of the highway.

The protection of this route and the recapture of the forward posts were thus ongoing objectives throughout the war.

Some of the peaks that were of vital strategic importance to the Pakistani defensive troops were Point and Point While was the nearest point that had a view of NH 1, point was the highest feature in the Dras sector, allowing the Pakistani troops to observe NH 1. The Pakistani troops at Tololing were aided by Pakistani fighters from Kashmir. Some of the posts put up a stiff resistance, including Tiger Hill Point that fell only later in the war.

Indian troops found well-entrenched Pakistani soldiers at Tiger Hill, and both sides suffered heavy casualties. After a final assault on the peak in which ten Pakistani soldiers and five Indian soldiers were killed, Tiger Hill finally fell. A few of the assaults occurred atop hitherto unheard of peaks — most of them unnamed with only Point numbers to differentiate them — which witnessed fierce hand to hand combat.

As the operation was fully underway, about artillery guns were brought in to clear the infiltrators in the posts that were in the line-of-sight. The Bofors FHB field howitzer played a vital role, with Indian gunners making maximum use of the terrain. However, its success was limited elsewhere due to the lack of space and depth to deploy it. The Indian Air Force was tasked to act jointly with ground troops on 25 May. Nachiketa , which it attributed to an engine failure , and a MiG fighter piloted by Sqn Ldr Ajay Ahuja which was shot down by the Pakistani army, both over Batalik sector.

French made Mirage H of the IAF were tasked to drop laser-guided bombs to destroy well-entrenched positions of the Pakistani forces [24] and flew its first sortie on 30 May. Since any daylight attack would be suicidal, all the advances had to be made under the cover of darkness, escalating the risk of freezing.

Based on military tactics , much of the costly frontal assaults by the Indians could have been avoided if the Indian Military had chosen to blockade the supply route of the opposing force, creating a siege.

Such a move would have involved the Indian troops crossing the LOC as well as initiating aerial attacks on Pakistani soil, however, a manoeuvre India was not willing to exercise due to the likely expansion of the theatre of war and reduced international support for its cause. Bruce Riedel , who was then an aide to President Bill Clinton , reported that US intelligence had imaged Pakistani movements of nuclear weapons to forward deployments for fear of the Kargil hostilities escalating into a wider conflict.

By the end of the war, Pakistan had to withdraw under international pressure and due to pressure from continued fighting at battle front and left India in control of all territory south and east of the LOC, as was established in July as per the Simla Agreement.

India also released taped phone conversations between the Army Chief and a senior Pakistani general where the latter is recorded saying: "the scruff of [the militants] necks is in our hands", [] although Pakistan dismissed it as a "total fabrication". Concurrently, Pakistan made several contradicting statements, confirming its role in Kargil, when it defended the incursions saying that the LOC itself was disputed. Clinton rebuked Sharif, however, and asked him to use his contacts to rein in the militants and withdraw Pakistani soldiers from Indian territory.

The joint statement issued by Clinton and Sharif conveyed the need to respect the LOC and resume bilateral talks as the best forum to resolve all disputes.


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