The Chief of the General Staff Lieutenant General Gul Hassan Khan summoned me peremptorily to his office to tell me that, “So you must do your usual PR stuff to prepare the nation to accept the shock...” Prepare the nation to accept the loss of East Pakistan. Good heavens! As simple as that. “Exactly how...?” I mumbled. “Well you may use your PR verbiage to lessen the impact.” I stood thunderstruck staring into the eyes of the General. He stared back in turn before reassuring, “Something like, though we were outnumbered and outgunned, we were not outclassed — you know what I mean.” “Is that all...?” I said. “That’s all. Go back to your office and hammer out something for your next press briefing.”
On December 16, Tiger Niazi surrendered at 1600 Hrs, according to the BBC. Back in West Pakistan, nothing was known about the modalities of the surrender. There was some useless effort to delay (or kill) the news. The poisoned chalice had to be drunk to the dregs somehow. Some of the finest civil-military heads were put together to produce a 26-word announcement as follows:

“Following an arrangement between the commanders of India and Pakistan, fighting has ceased in the Eastern theatre and the Indian troops have entered Dhaka (EOM).”

Writer is a Brigadier, PA (retd.) and an ex-POW.