Indian conquest of Hyderabad


Southern Asia 1948.0917

Indian conquest of Hyderabad

Independence of India, Pakistan, and the states of South Asia and the Middle East (17 September 1948)

Historical Map of South & Southwest Asia

Following the end of British rule in India, the Nizam of Hyderabad - a Muslim ruler over a mostly Hindu population - had opted for independence. However, India, locked in war with Pakistan over Kashmir, considered the Nizam a threat and in a 1948 "police action" invaded and annexed Hyderabad.

Main Events

Indian offensives in Kashmir

In Operations Gulab, Eraze, Duck, and Easy, India launched a series of counteroffensives against Pakistan in Kashmir. By the end of November, they had captured Keran and Gurais in the Kashmir Valley, retaken Kargil in the High Himalayas, and relieved the year-long siege of Poonch.

Malayan Emergency

The Malayan National Liberation Army - the military arm of the Malayan Communist Party - started a guerrilla against the British dominated Federation of Malaya. The British responded by instituting emergency measures and bringing in Commonwealth forces, largely defeating the guerrillas by the early 1950s. The independence of Malaya in 1957 further undermined the rationale of the war, and the remaining holdouts surrendered in the following years.

Operation Polo

In Operation Polo, the Indian Armed Forces invaded the State of Hyderabad in what it regarded as a "police action". After 5 days fighting and the defeat of his army on all fronts, the Nizam of Hyderabad announced a ceasefire at 5pm on 17 September. A formal surrender took place at 4pm the following day.

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