Why is Kargil Vijay Diwas celebrated?


India’s victory in the Kargil conflict with Pakistan 19 years ago is the biggest reason for celebrations. To commemorate that victory, Kargil Vijay Diwas is celebrated every year on July 26.

What was Kargil conflict?

The Indian soldiers had secured this victory after a three-month long conflict with Pakistan. Several lives were lost on both sides of the border with the Indian side losing nearly 490 officers, soldiers and jawans. Indian Army had fiercely faught and successfully evicted Pakistani intruders. The Army had successfully recaptured the Tiger Hill and other posts. The rough terrain and high altitude Himalayan regions had made the war more difficult.

Highlights of Kargil Conflict and Importance of Kargil Vijay Diwas

The then Pakistan army chief General Pervez Musharraf was the brain behind planning attack on Kargil as he had reportedly planned everything without the knowledge of the then Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.The war took place between May and July of 1999 in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kargil district. The conflict started with the the infiltration of both Pakistani troops and terrorists into Indian territory.The infiltrators had positioned themselves in key locations which gave them advantage in combat.

Kargil was purposely chosen because the terrain is conducive to preemptive seizure of several unoccupied military positions. A defender on the high ground has an advantage because any attack to dislodge a defender from high ground in mountain warfare requires a far higher ratio of attackers to defenders. High altitude and freezing temperatures are the major hurdles.

During the conflict, Pakistan had shot down two Indian fighter jets while another fighter jet crashed during the operation. Pakistan which had always tried for third party intervention, asked the US to intervene but the then President Bill Clinton declined to do so until Pakistani troops were withdrawn from the Line of Control. As Pakistani troops withdrew, the Indian armed forces attacked the rest of the outposts, managing to get back the last of them by July 26. However, the Army declared the mission successful on July 26, 1999. Since then the day is being celebrated annually as Vijay Diwas. Kargil Vijay Diwas is observed to honour the war heroes and participants. Every year, the Army organises functions and events across the country.

Indian Army Motorcycle Expedition 2018  commemorates Kargil Vijay Diwas


Photo: Indian Army

This time, a motorcycle expedition comprising of ‘SHWET ASHW’ the elite Motorcycle Display Team of the Corps of Military Police was flagged off’ from Bengaluru on Monday, to commemorate the victory of Indian Army in Operation Vijay 1999. The expedition will traverse a distance of more than 3250 Kms from Bangalore to Dras, Jammu and Kashmir over a period of 24 days across eight states of the country, reaching Kargil War Memorial, Dras on 26 July 2018, the official release stated.

Photo: Indian Army

The ‘SHWET ASHW’ was raised in the year 1952 at CMP Centre & School in Faizabad. Since its raising the team has performed at various National and International events and holds Three Guinness Book World Records in its name. The expedition will be flagged in on 26 July 2018 at Kargil War Memorial, Dras as a part of the ‘Kargil Vijay Diwas’ celebrations. The aim of the expedition is to strengthen the brotherhood, pay homage to the supreme sacrifices made by martyrs during the Kargil War and motivate the youth to join Indian Army.