In the 1971 Indo-Pak War, the Indian Navy’s Eastern Naval Command had effectively blockaded the sea route of East Pakistan in the Bay of Bengal. India’s aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant, had completely dismantled Pakistan’s Navy activity in the Sea. Frustrated with the blockade, Pakistan sent its best submarine, PNS Ghazi with the dual objective to sink INS Vikrant and plant sea mines along the coast. But the Indian Navy’s smart move completely destroyed PNS Ghazi and failed their plan.
Not learning the lesson from their forefathers, Pakistan once again tried to transgress along the Indian waters in July. But, the Indian Navy’s alertness foiled Pakistan’s nefarious activities in the border area of Gujarat.
PNS Alamgir in Indian waters
Reports suggest that in July this year, a Pakistani warship, PNS Alamgir, crossed the maritime border of India and approached the coast of Gujarat. Detecting the foreign warship in Indian waters, the Indian Coast Guard’s Dornier maritime surveillance aircraft jumped into action and forced the ship to retreat.
The Dornier aircraft issued multiple warnings to the Pakistani warship and inquired about their location. But, maintaining silence, PNS Alamgir did not respond. The report says that the Dornier even tried to call it on its radio communications but the Pakistani Captain remained silent. The Dornier constantly hovered over the warship and forced the PNS Alamgir to retreat.
Sources said that Pakistani warships might be trying to probe how deep they can go inside Indian waters without getting detected. But the Navy’s alertness caught them in the middle and forced them to run.
PNS Alamgir is an Oliver Hazard Perry Class Navy Frigate commissioned into the US Navy in Dec 1979. The Frigate was handed over to the Pakistan Navy on 31 Aug 2010 and was subsequently commissioned on the same day as PNS Alamgir into the Pakistan Navy at Naval Station Florida. The ship is 453 feet long and displaces 4100 tons. It is propelled by 2 Gas turbines on a single shaft and can achieve speeds in excess of 30 kts in 100 secs. The ship is well equipped for various national and multinational taskings. PNS Alamgir can carry two helicopters for multiple tasks.
PNS Alamgir narrowly missed meeting the fate of PNS Ghazi
Pakistani Naval ship PNS Alamgir was instantly forced to run as the Dornier had intercepted its movement and had informed the Navy’s information and command centre to tackle this Frigate. PNS Alamgir seemed to have miss the fate of PNS Ghazi. In 1971, a similar nefarious plot was planned by Pakistan to sink the Indian Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant.
PNS Ghazi, a US-made Tench-class diesel-electric submarine was leased to Pakistan by the US in 1963. In the 1971 Indo-Pak war, when INS Vikrant had completely blocked their way to east Bengal, they sent PNS Ghazi with the dual purpose to sink the INS Vikrant and lay sea mines in Indian Waters.
PNS Ghazi sailed from Karachi Harbour on November 14, 1971, in a hunt for the Vikrant. Working on the intelligence data, the Indian Navy sailed its main fleet to safety and sent INS Rajput, a destroyer in place of the carrier. A decommissioned destroyer, INS Rajput pretending to be the INS Vikrant sailed from the Vizag port.
Indian Navy’s plan to take down PNS Ghazi
Stimulating false signals, the Indian Navy fooled PNS Ghazi and the whole Pakistani Navy. Vice Admiral Krishna first sent INS Vikrant safely near the Andaman Islands and informed officials that stimulated the sail timing of INS Rajput from the harbour to match that of PNS Ghazi.
As most of the navigational aid was off near the Vizag harbour PNS Ghazi revealed its presence in the shallow waters. Sitting in the prey of PNS Ghazi, INS Rajput increased its speed towards the Pakistani sub. To save itself, PNS Ghazi began a steep dive and thus revealed its location.
Noticing the disturbance in the water caused due to the steep dive of PNS Ghazi, the captain of the INS Rajput launched two torpedoes toward the enemy sub. Indian Navy’s report says that the mines planted by the PNS Ghazi detonated after being hit by the torpedoes and engulfed the Pakistani sub in the explosions.
The PNS Alamgir would have met with the same fate if they did not retreat from the Indian waters. Like the PNS Ghazi, the PNS Alamgir would have been buried deep in the Arabian Sea. Pakistanis seem to have not learned the lesson from their forefathers.
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