Similarly, Bangladesh Navy was also established with the Naval troops deserted from the Pakistan Navy. On 9 November 1971, the first naval fleet 'Bangabandhu Naubohar' consisting of six small ships was inaugurated. The command structure of the Bangladesh Forces was fully organised with the regular brigades, sector troops and guerilla forces, the Bangladesh Airforce and the Navy. The Mukti Bahini had fought many successful battles in putting up initial resistance. But within a short time, they were temporarily contained by the Pakistan army and were compelled to withdraw to the safe sanctuary in the Indian territory. The Mukti Bahini was, however, re-equipped, reorganised and retrained. As a result, it got into fighting with fresh zeal after April-May 1971.
At the international level, the United States and the People's Republic of China considered the crisis as an internal affair of Pakistan. On the other hand, India, Soviet Union and her allies and general masses in Japan, and Western countries stood solidly behind Bangladesh. In order to gain strategic advantage vis-a-vis Sino-US-Pakistan axis, Indo-Soviet Friendship Treaty was signed on 9 August 1971. It provided a new dimension to the War of Liberation.
Having realised that the Pakistan army could not be defeated by conventional warfare method, it was decided to create large guerilla forces all over the country. All Sector commanders were accordingly ordered to recruit, train and induct guerillas inside the country.
The joint command of the Mukti Bahini and the Indian army was underway from November 1971. Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora, Commander, Eastern Command of Indian Army, became the commander of the joint forces. The joint command of the Mukti Bahini and the Indian Army, however, started operation from the evening of 3 December, when the Pakistan Air Force bombed Amritsar, Sree Nagar and the Kashmir valley. Immediately, the Indian armed forces were ordered to hit back the Pakistan army and thus the Indo-Pak war broke out. The Mukti Bahini and the Indian army continued advancing inside Bangladesh and the defeat and surrender of the Pakistan army became a matter of time. International efforts for a cease-fire before Bangladesh is fully liberated failed due to Soviet veto in the United Nations Security Council.
The Indian troops and the freedom fighters of No 11 Sector reached Tongi on 14 December and Savar in the morning of 16 December. Major General Jamshed, commander 36 Division of the Pakistan Army received Major General Nagra at Mirpur Bridge near Dhaka City. The Mukti Bahini and the Indian forces entered Dhaka city at 10.10 a. m. Major General Jacob, the Chief of Staff of the Indian Eastern command landed at Dhaka airport at 1 p.m. with the draft instrument of surrender. A fleet of helicopters landed on the tarmac of Dhaka airport at about 4 p.m. with Lieutenant General Aurora and his staff. Group Captain AK Khandaker, Deputy Chief of Staff, Bangladesh Forces represented the Mukti Bahini. Lieutenant General AAK Niazi received Lieutenant General Aurora. The instrument of surrender was signed by Lieutenant Jagit Sing Aurora and Lieutenant General Niazi at the ramna racecourse (now Suhrawardy Uddyan) at one minute past 5 p.m. on 16 December 1971. [Rafiqul Islam]
Sectors of the War of Liberation In the War of Liberation in 1971 the whole geographical area of the then East Pakistan was strategically divided into eleven sectors with a sector commander for each of them. For better efficiency in military operations each of the sectors were divided into a number of sub-sectors under a commander.
Sector 1 comprised the districts of Chittagong and Chittagong Hill Tracts, and the entire eastern area of the Noakhali district on the banks of the river Muhuri. The headquarters of the sector was at Harina. The sector commander was Major Ziaur Rahman, later replaced by Major Rafiqul Islam. The five sub-sectors of this sector (and their commanders) were: Rishimukh (Captain Shamsul Islam); Sreenagar (Captain Matiur Rahman, later replaced by Captain Mahfuzur Rahman); Manughat (Captain Mahfuzur Rahman); Tabalchhari (Subedar Ali Hossain); and Dimagiri (a Subedar, whose name is not known).
A contingent of nearly ten thousand freedom fighters fought in this sector. They included about two thousand members of the EPR, police, army, nave and air forces and about eight thousand paramilitary troops. The guerilla fighters of this sector were deputed to operate inside the country in 137 groups.
Sector 2 comprised the districts of Dhaka, Comilla, and Faridpur, and part of Noakhali district. The sector commander was Major Khaled Mosharraf, later replaced by Major ATM Haider. About thirty five thousand guerilla fighters fought in this sector. Nearly six thousand of them were members of regular armed forces. The six sub-sectors of this sector (and their commanders) were: Gaugasagar, Akhaura and Kasba (Mahbub, later replaced by Lieutenant Farooq, and Lieutenant Humayun Kabir); Mandabhav (Captain Gaffar); Shalda-nadi (Abdus Saleq Chowdhury); Matinagar (Lieutenant Didarul Alam); Nirbhoypur (Captain Akbar, later replaced by Lieutant Mahbub); and Rajnagar (Captain Jafar Imam, later replaced by Captain Shahid, and Lieutenant Imamuzzaman).
Sector 3 comprised the area between Churaman Kathi (near Sreemangal) and Sylhet in the north and Singerbil of Brahmanbaria in the south. The sector commander was Major KM Shafiullah, later replaced by Major ANM Nuruzzaman. Nineteen guerilla bases operated in this sector. By November 1971, the number of the guerilla fighters in the sector stood at nearly thirty thousand. The ten sub-sectors of this sector (and their commanders) were: Asrambari (Captain Aziz, later replaced by Captain Ejaz); Baghaibari (Captain Aziz, later replaced by Captain Ejaz); Hatkata (Captain Matiur Rahman); Simla (Captain Matin); Panchabati (Captain Nasim); Mantala (Captain MSA Bhuyan); Vijoynagar (Captain MSA Bhuyan); Kalachhora (Lieutenant Majumdar); Kalkalia (Lieutenant Golam Helal Morshed); and Bamutia (Lieutenant Sayeed).