On 22 October 1947, tribal raiders from the North-West Frontier descended on the Kashmir Valley. Their attacks included plunder, killings, and pillage; their objective, to devastate the Valley and seize Srinagar.
To combat the impending crisis, in late October 1947 a battalion of the Indian Army was flown into the Kashmir Valley at virtually a moment’s notice. Further units followed, eventually establishing itself as the historic 161 Infantry Brigade. Snowbound and isolated, this Brigade played a key role in defending the Valley and ejecting the invaders.
This book brings to life the unforgettable story of the 161 Infantry Brigade’s struggles in the Kashmir Valley. Narrated by its commander, Lt. General ‘Bogey’ Sen, the book provides a wealth of detail. General Sen also makes crucial observations on the larger political motives for and implications of the Kashmir conflict, which has changed the course of South Asian geopolitics.
This book places on record the events that took place in Kashmir during 1947–48, the first time that Indian soldiers fought under Indian commanders at every level.
Lt. General Lionel Protip 'Bogey' Sen (1910-81) was born in Rangoon and commissioned into the Indian Army in 1931 after receiving his training at Sandhurst. During World War II he fought in Africa and the Arakan, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) in the Battle of Kangaw. As acting Brigadier he commanded the 161 Infantry Brigade during the most critical period of the Kashmir operations in 1947-48.
Off the battlefield, he served with distinction as Deputy Director of Military Intelligence, Military Adviser to the Indian Mission in Japan, Chief of General Staff, and Army Commander, Eastern and Southern Commands.