Sub was a hit with Pak­istan

Daily Mail - - Coffee Break -

QUESTIONSince

World War II, I’m told there have been only two oc­ca­sions when a sub­ma­rine has tor­pe­doed a war­ship suc­cess­fully. One was the sink­ing of the Gen­eral Bel­grano dur­ing the Falk­lands War. What was the other? PNS Han­gor (‘Shark’) was a Pak­istani Daphne-class sub­ma­rine launched in France in 1968, and in­ducted into the Pak­istan Navy in 1971.

Un­der the cap­taincy of Com­man­der Ahmed Tasnim dur­ing the Indo-Pak­istan war of 1971, Han­gor sailed on Novem­ber 22, 1971, to pa­trol off the In­dian Kathi­awar Coast.

On De­cem­ber 9, she picked up two en­emy con­tacts, INS Khukri and INS Kir­pan, 40 nau­ti­cal miles off the coast of Diu, Gu­jarat.

The sub stalked the two ships and, de­spite their greater speed, man­aged to in­ter­cept them by pre­dict­ing their move­ments.

Tasnim re­leased three tor­pe­does, the first of which missed, but the sec­ond scored a di­rect hit on Khukri. The third struck a glanc­ing blow on Kir­pan, which only dam­aged the ship.

The strike on Khukri proved fa­tal and she sank with the loss of 18 of­fi­cers and 176 sailors: just 67 crew mem­bers sur­vived, and Cap­tain Ma­hen­dra Nath Mulla chose to go down with his ship.

This re­mains In­dia’s big­gest war­time ca­su­alty and led to a fun­da­men­tal change in the coun­try’s tac­tics in a war it even­tu­ally won. Han­gor’s tor­pedo of­fi­cer, Lt Fasih Bokhari, rose to com­mand the Pak­istan Navy.

In a cer­e­mony in 2006, PNS Han­gor was de­com­mis­sioned from the Pak­istan Navy, with plans to turn her into a mu­seum ship. Dur­ing the cer­e­mony, Vice-Ad­mi­ral Ahmed Tasnim in­spected her for the last time.

Dt J. Pa­tel, Le­ices­ter. QUES­TIONMy

daugh­ter, who is 22, still keeps un­der her pil­low the blan­ket she had when she was a baby. Is this a record? FUR­THER to ear­lier an­swers, my com­forter is a teddy bear, bought for me when I was a few weeks old in 1936.

Ed­ward Bear has been the source of great com­fort to me through­out my life, in­clud­ing my child­hood dur­ing the war years, my ado­les­cent highs and lows, the tri­als and tribu­la­tions of ill­nesses and a mar­riage break-up.

Al­though he is a bit worn and his eyes have been re­placed by but­tons, he still has pride of place on my bed — and he is a very good lis­tener. Ms Pamela Hod­kin, St As­aph, Corn­wall.

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