A book titled ‘A Prime Minister to Remember- Memories of a Military Chief’, authored by former Navy Chief Admiral Sushil Kumar recently released highlights the key defence related decisions taken by former Prime Minister of India Late Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Admiral Kumar served as Navy Chief between 1998 and 2001 and also oversaw Kargil conflict in 1999.
The book by former Navy Chief Admiral Sushil Kumar reads that 1999 Kargil conflict was Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s “finest hour”.
He credits Vajpayee for turning the strategic tactical loss into a massive victory and for which he gave full credit to Armed Forces. Vajpayee instructed armed to not cross LoC (Line of Control), but drive them [Pakistan] away, telling this as his best master stroke Adm. kumar observed that Mr. Vajpayee knew the value of restraint.
In the wake of the Parliament terror attack (December 13, 2001) Vajpayee wanted to hit a Pakistani Army camp but was forced to drop plan at last moment as it got relocated.
Admiral kumar also says that while then External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh wanted India to support United States war on Afghanistan in wake of 9/11 terrorist attack, but the military chiefs disagreed and Vajpayee diplomatically went with latter option. He mention that Operation Parakram that was called after Parliament attack was not the military’s finest hour.