Patton Nagar: The Battle of Asal Uttar 8th-10th September 1965

The Battle

After weeks of covert (and not so covert) clashes Pakistan launched a full scale assault into northern India on the 1st September 1965. On the 6th September the Indian 4th Mountain Division crossed the border over the Ichhogil canal as one of three counter thrusts further south. However the Pakistani forces were quick to react rushing infantry, armour and artillery formations to the region, and by the 7th September all the initial Indian gains had been recovered and their forces had started to disintegrate. Desperate attempts were made to reenforce and sure-up the position before the expected Pakistani drive in to India.

A number of strong probes were made during the 8th September with varying degrees of success, but by nightfall the position still held. The first major assault was made during the following afternoon with elements of the 4th Armoured Brigade attacking the area around and to the south of Asal Uttar. The villages defences were solid, the tanks found the flooded area to the south hard going and the attack faulted. A second attempt was made just after dusk with more success. The M-47 and M-48s having I.R. night sights, but at the critical moment the Indian artillery intervined and once again the Pakistani brigade was forced to withdraw.

The 9th was relatively quiet as both sides regrouped. However, dawn the next day brought the largest attack. This time it was the 5th Armoured Brigade who first pinned the forces in Asal Uttar and then assaulted it from the north. By noon there had been little progress and an attempt was made to out flank the position to the north. Here a desperate battle was fought in flooded areas, bush and fields of sugar cane. The armour faired badly in such close terrain and as the advance slowed the Pakistani divisional commander came forward to regain some momentum. Radio signals from his command group were picked up and their position shelled. The Major-General was seriously wounded and many of his staff also became casualties. The attack collapsed and the Pakistani forces retreated back across the canal.

In this action Pakistan lost in the region of 40 tanks, may be up to 30 of which were Pattons. They were collected together near the village of Asal Uttar in a place that the locals named ``Patton Nagar" (or ``Patton Graveyard").

The Wargame

The map is made up of six 6' x 8' boards. During each 24 hour period there are 12 daytime turns and 6 night turns. The game starts at dawn on the 8th September and ends at dusk on the 10th September. The Indians may make their initial deployment on the eastern half of board 5 and anywhere on any other board. They may start the game dug-in and may lay up to five 4" x 4" marked minefields. All of the Pakistani forces enter along the western edge of board 5. Indian reenforcements may enter along any Indian held road on the northern or eastern edges of the map. The time table for the arrival of the reenforcements is as follows:

India


Dawn 9th September (Turn 1, Day 2):    2nd (Independent) Armoured Brigade.
Dusk 9th September (Turn 1, Night 2):  17th Sikh

Pakistan


Dawn    8th September (Turn 1, Day 1): 4th Armoured Brigade.
Midday  8th September (Turn 7, Day 1): First Infantry Regiment (106th Infantry Brigade).
                                       First A.A. Battery.
Dawn   10th September (Turn 1, Day 3): D.H.Q. (1st Armoured Division).
                                       5th Armoured Brigade.
                                       Second Infantry Regiment (106th Infantry Brigade).
                                       Second A.A. Battery.

Air support may be rolled for in any daytime turn in which no friendly aircraft are over the table:

3D6    India      Pakistan

18    Canberra     F-104A 
17    Mystere IV   Canberra
16    Gnat         F-86F 
15    Hunter       F-86F 
3-14  Nothing      Nothing
Canberra: 6 bombs.
Hunter: Autocan + 2 bombs or 2 Rocket pods.
F-86F: Autocan + 2 bombs or 2 Rocket pods.
Mystere IV: Autocan + 2 bombs or 2 Rocket pods.
Gnat}: Autocan.
F-104A: Autocan.

To win the Pakistani forces must clear a road off the northern or eastern edges of the map and still be holding it at the end of the game (Turn 12, Day 3). If they fail to do this then the Indians have won.

The whole game could be played out using 1/200th scale models on a single 6' x 8' board, using cm instead of inches.

Special Rules

If 4th Armoured Brigade has not broken through by the start of the second day then their moral drops to poor and the moral of all the Indians units goes to regular.

During their defence the Indians were able to make good use of the terrain, flooding many areas surrounding the rivers. The only ``solid ground" lies between the two roads linking Khem-Karam with Dibbi-Pura and Valtoha. This region will be covered by a mix of bush and woods. Outside this region there will be a mix of marsh, flooded areas (especially near the three rivers), sugar cane and maize fields (up to 9' high) with some bush and woods. Roads provide the only good going and rivers may only be crossed along roads. The mined and flooded area on the eastern edge of board 6 is impassable.

Indian Order of Battle

4th Mountain Division (Regular unless stated otherwise):

DHQ:              CO + 7 figures
                  2 Jeep
                  2 Supply Trucks
AA Battery:       1 20/40mm AA Gun
                  4 figures
                  1 Truck
18th Rajputana Rifles (Poor):
RHQ:              CO  + 3 figures (2" mort., 1 Baz.)
                  1 Jeep
4 Companies:      6 figures
Support Company:  1 Jeep + 106mm RCL or 6pdr
                  1 81mm mortar
                  6 figures
                  1 Jeep
1/9th Gorkha Rifles:
RHQ:              CO  + 3 figures (2" mort.)
                  1 Jeep
2 Companies:      8 figures
Support Company:  1 Jeep + 106mm RCL or 6pdr
                  1 81mm mortar
                  6 figures
                  1 Jeep
4th Grenadiers:
RHQ:              CO  + 3 figures (2" mort., 1 Baz.)
                  1 Jeep
4 Companies:      8 figures
Support Company:  1 Jeep + 106mm RCL or 6pdr
                  1 81mm mortar
                  6 figures
                  1 Jeep
Remnants of 7th Grenadiers/13th Dogra (Poor):
RHQ:              CO  + 2 figures (1 Baz.)
2 Companies:      6 figures
Under command (Remnants of 9th Jak Rifles) (Poor):
2 Companies:      6 figures
Support Company:  1 Jeep + 106mm RCL or 6pdr
                  1 81mm mortar
                  6 figures
                  1 Jeep

Armoured Support (9th Horse)

RHQ               1 M4 (76)
3 Tank Squadrons  3 M4 (76)

Artil. Support (4th Mountain Artil. Brig.)

1 Observer team  2 figures
                 1 Jeep
8 Batteries      1 25pdr
                 4 figures

Possible reenforcements (Regular)

2nd (Independent) Armoured Brigade: 
              2 Supply Trucks

3rd Cavalry:
RHQ           1 Centurion 7
2 Squadrons   3 Centurion 7
8th Cavalry:
RHQ           1 M4 (76)
2 Squadrons   3 M4 (76)

17th Sikh:    CO + 8 figures

Pakinstani of Battle

1st Armoured Division (Regular unless stated otherwise)

D.H.Q.                CO + 7 figures
                      2 Jeep

4th & 5th Armoured Brigades (each):

BHQ:                   CO + 7 figures
                       2 Jeep
                       2 Supply Trucks
Armoured Regiment: 
RHQ:                   1 M-47
3 Tank Squadrons       3 M-47
Armoured Regiment: 
RHQ:                   1 M-48
3 Tank Squadrons       3 M-48
Armoured Regiment: 
RHQ:                   1 M-24
3 Tank Squadrons       3 M-24

106th Infantry Brigade:
                  1 supply truck

2 Motorized Infantry Regiments (each):
     RHQ          CO + 3 figures (60mm mort. 1 Baz.)
                  1 Jeep
4 Companies:      6 figures
                  1 Truck
Support Company:  1 Jeep + 106mm RCL or COBRA ATGW (Gun class 1, Range 36")
                  1 81mm mortar
                  6 figures
                  1 Jeep

2 AA Batteries:   1 20/40mm AA Gun
                  4 figures
                  1 Truck

Artil. Support (Off Board)

1 Observer team  2 figures
                 1 Jeep
6 Batteries      1 25pdr
                 4 figures
Vehicle         Armour  Gun    Speed  NF   Smoke

M-4 (76)           C     2       M     -     - 
Centurion 7        I     0       M     -     D
M-24               D     3       M     -     - 
M-47               A     0       M     -     - 
M-48               A     0       M    IR     -
``War Dispatches - Indo-Pak Conflict 1965'' Harbakhsh Singh, Lancer International 1991.

The Battlefield at Asal Uttar