12th Infantry Division (Pakistan)

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For other uses, see 12th Division.
12th Infantry Division
Active 1948- Present
Country  Pakistan
Branch  Pakistan Army
Type Mountain infantry
Role Infantry, though supporting, artillery and armour elements are attached
Size 30,000+ men (though this may vary as units are rotated)
Part of X Corps (Pakistan)
Headquarters Murree, Punjab (Pakistan)
Nickname Chinar Division
Colors Green & Gold
Engagements Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
Siachen conflict
Indo-Pakistani War of 1999
War on terror
Commanders
General Officer Commanding Major-General Faheem Ul Aziz

12th Infantry Division is a Pakistani Army infantry division currently based in Murree, Punjab close to Azad Kashmir. The Chinar Division's headquarters are located in the Murree Hills Cantonment. The brigades of 12th Division are deployed all across Azad Jammu Kashmir and the Line of Control. With 6 Infantry Brigades, 1 Divisional Artillery brigade and a number of supporting units of Air Defence, Supply and Remount Veterinary Corps under its command, 12th Infantry division is the largest division of Pakistan Army.[citation needed]

History[edit]

The division was formed in 1948, from troops allocated to Pakistan from the old British Indian Army. It was the first division sized formation to be created by the Pakistan Army (the three prior ones, 7th (Golden Arrow), 8th and 10th infantry divisions predated Pakistan).

1948 Kashmir War[edit]

The division went into combat against the Indian army in Kashmir. A notable action was the recapturing of Skardu from the Indian forces, accomplished with help from tribesmen from the tribal areas.

1965 Indo-Pakistani War[edit]

In between the wars the division was active on the ceasefire line, where fighting broke out on several occasions. In 1965 the division undertook Operation Grand Slam, whereby under the command of 7th Infantry Division, it attacked and captured Chamb, and then moved on and captured territory beyond the river Tawi, ending up in a position 6 km ahead of Jammu. Although its performance was greatly lauded at the time, its commander Maj-Gen Akhtar Hussain Malik was privately criticized by General Ayub Khan, for abandoning several posts in Kashmir which were then taken by the Indian forces, and for losing the strategically vital Hajir Pir Pass (this would not be retaken until after the ceasefire).

1971 Bangladeshi War[edit]

Six years later, the division went into action again, this time in Poonch-Ranjouri sector. Despite being outnumbered by Indian forces, the formation managed to advance nearly 50 km, all the way to Ranjouri. Unfortunately dogged Indian resistance meant that it was unable to capture Poonch itself. During the war, it was commanded by Maj-Gen Mohammad Akbar Khan.

Recent history[edit]

Since 1971, the formation had been deployed on the Line of Control, dividing the Indian and Pakistani-administered Kashmir, where sporadic fights break out with Indian forces, and occasionally full fledged actions develop. In 1991, the division defeated an Indian incursion into the Neelum Valley.

List of GOCs (Commanders)[edit]

Lt.Gen. Attiqur Rahman
Lt.Gen. Akhtar Hussain Malik GOC during the 1965 Indo-Pak War
Gen. Yahya Khan 1966-67
Gen. Akhtar Abdur Rahman 1971-74
Major General Mohammad Akbar Khan
Major General Zia ul Haq
Lt.Gen. Ghulam Muhammad Malik 1990-1992
Lt.Gen. Tariq Parvez 1992-1995
Lt.Gen. Shahid Aziz, HI(M) 1996-1999
Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, NI(M), HI(M) 1999-2001
Lt.Gen. Waseem Ahmad Ashraf, HI(M) 2001-2003
Lt.Gen. Khalid Nawaz Khan, HI(M) 2003-2006
Lt.Gen. Zaheer-ul-Islam, HI(M) 2006-2008
Lt.Gen. Maqsood Ahmad, HI(M) September 2008 - April 2010
Major General Sohail Ahmad Khan, HI(M) April 2010 - October 2011
Major General Syed Najam ul Hassan Shah, HI(M) October 2011 - July 2013
Major General Faheem ul Aziz July 2013 - present

References[edit]

  • Global Security Website.
  • Orbat.com
  • Pakistan Army; A History, by Brian Cloughly.

External links[edit]