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The Instrument of Surrender was a written agreement that enabled the surrender of the Pakistan Armed Forces in the Bangladesh Liberation War. The surrender took place at the Ramna Race Course in Dacca on December 16, 1971. Lieutenant-General A A K Niazi, joint commander of the Pakistan Armed Forces of East Pakistan contingent, and Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora, joint commander of the Bangladesh-India Allied Forces, signed the instrument amid thousands of cheering crowds at the race course. Air Commodore A. K. Khandker, Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Bangladesh Armed Forces, and Lieutenant General J F R Jacob of the Indian Eastern Command, acted as witnesses to the surrender. Subsequently, around 93,000 Pakistani troops and officials were taken as prisoners-of-war by the Indian Army, the largest number of POWs since World War II. They were later repatriated in 1973 under the terms of the Simla Agreement.

Surrender ceremony

Also present were Vice-Admiral Mohammad Shariff, commander of the Pakistani Naval Eastern Command and Air Vice-Marshal Patrick D. Callaghan of the Pakistan Air Force's Eastern Air Force Command, who signed the agreement. On behalf of Bangladesh, Air Commodore A. K. Khandker acted as witness to the surrender. Lieutenant General Jacob Rafael Jacob, Chief of Staff of the Indian Eastern Command, along with the other commanders of Indian naval and air forces, acted as witnesses on behalf of India. The signing of the document marked the end of the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 and the creation of Bangla Desh (later reduced to a single word). Aurora accepted the surrender without a word, while the crowd on the race course started shouting anti-Niazi and anti-Pakistan slogans.[1]

Text of the Instrument

The text of the surrender is now a public property of Indian, Bangladeshi and Pakistani governments and the text of the document can be seen on display in the National Museum in New Delhi. The text of the Instrument of Surrender document was as follows:[2][3]

The PAKISTAN Eastern Command agree to surrender all PAKISTAN Armed Forces in BANGLA DESH to Lieutenant-General JAGJIT SINGH AURORA, General Officer Commanding in Chief of Indian and BANGLA DESH forces in the Eastern Theater. This surrender includes all PAKISTAN land, air and naval forces as also all para-military forces and civil armed forces. These forces will lay down their arms and surrender at the places where they are currently located to the nearest regular troops under the command of Lieutenant-General JAGJIT SINGH AURORA.

The PAKISTAN Eastern Command shall come under the orders of Lieutenant-General JAGJIT SINGH AURORA as soon as the instrument has been signed. Disobedience of orders will be regarded as a breach of the surrender terms and will be dealt with in accordance with the accepted laws and usages of war. The decision of Lieutenant-General JAGJIT SINGH AURORA will be final, should any doubt arise as to the meaning of interpretation of the surender terms.

Lieutenant JAGJIT SINGH AURORA gives a solemn assurance that personnel who surrender shall be treated with dignity and respect that soldiers are entitled to in accordance with provisions of the GENEVA Convention and guarantees the safety and well-being of all PAKISTAN military and para-military forces who surrender. Protection will be provided to foreign nationals, ethnic minorities and personnel of WEST PAKISTANI origin by the forces under the command of Lieutenant- General JAGJIT SINGH AURORA.

            <signed >                            <signed>
         Lieutenant-General                      Leiutenant-General
  General Officer Commanding in Chief   Martial Law Administrator Zone B and
  India and BANGLA DESH Forces in the    Commander Eastern Command
            Eastern Theatre                      (Pakistan)
            16 December 1971                  16 December 1971

In literature

In Salman Rushdie's novel Midnight's Children, the encounter between the two generals is shown in the chapter "Sam and the Tiger".



  1. Of betrayal and bungling by Kuldip Nayar (Google cache link) - Indian Express 3 February 1998[dead link]
  2. [1] The Instrument of Surrender on Virtual Bangladesh History
  3. SoP. "The Separation of East Pakistan". Story of Pakistan. Retrieved 20 July 2012. 

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