The day of 21st November holds a special place in the hearts of Indians and Bangladeshis alike who were directly or indirectly affected by the Bangladesh Liberation war. The Battle of Garibpur fought on this very day ensured a strong and perpetual alliance between the two nations. Indian armed forces fought alongside “Mukti Bahini” which was formed by Bangladesh military personnel and specialized in guerrilla warfare.
The alliance named “Mitro Bahini” took Pakistani forces by surprise by launching an offensive against 107 Infantry Brigade stationed in the then East Pakistan. Undeterred by the fact that the alliance was outnumbered against Pakistani troops, the “14 Punjab Battalion” fought ferociously with support from a squadron of 14 PT-76 tanks. The alliance forces decimated the Pakistani attack by destroying majority of their Tank squadron and causing heavy casualties for the battalion.
Frustrated by the defeat, Pakistan relied on its Air attack for an edge against the alliance, but hereto the Indian Air Force engaged and neutralized the threat by shooting down 4 F-86 Sabre aircrafts. Two of the pilots were taken as POWs.