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421. Lt.Col Salim Caleb

Tiger in the tank
Lt.Col Salim Caleb

In 1965, L.t. Col. Salim Galeb commanded the 3 cavalry in the Khem Karan sector. They were deployed in the Bhikhiwind Patil area to prevent an enemy attack thrust. On September 8, as enemy tanks broke through the Indian defences, L.t. Col Caleb intercepted them on the Bhikhiwind Khem Karan road and in the ensuing battle destroyed 6 tanks. The enemy was again thwarted as it moved towards the west and soon its advance was halted.
On September 10, as the Pakistani forces sought another breakthrough, the 3 cavalry deployed itself in two semi-circles prepared for any eventuality. At 3.30 p.m. a fierce tank battle commenced and accurate Indian firing destroyed 15 Patton tanks. Nine tanks were captured.
L.t. Col. Caleb received the Mahavir Chakra for leading his forces with rare anticipation and courage.

On 10 September 1965, Lieutenant Colonel Salim Caleb was in command of a cavalry regiment, which was engaged in a tank battle with Pakistani tank near Khem Karan. Despite heavy enemy fire for long spells, he exercised his command with calmness and fortitude and inspired his officers and men to fight against the enemy fearlessly. In this action 15 enemy Patton tanks were destroyed and nine others which were in good working conditions were captured. His cool courage, leadership and foresight contributed greatly to this outstanding success.

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