The "Sovereign Independent Republic of Bangla Desh (Bengali nation)" is just over a day old, but its future is uncertain.
SV Crowd around military lorry flying Bangla Desh flag
CU Pan from flag to soldier on lorry
SCU Soldiers around lorry
CU Int. driver as lorry moves off
Travel shot lorry along dirt road
SV & CU Crowd around and attempting to put out a burning jute truck (3 shots)
Travel shot lorry passes army patrol on roadside
CU Soldier carrying automatic weapon
LV Pan secret camp of Bangla Desh army
SV Troops beside tents
SV Pan captured equipment including anti-tank gun on jeep
SV Troops beside tents
SV Troops go out on patrol perimeter of camp (2 shots)
CU & SV Troops patrol perimeter of camp (2 shots)
GV & CU Monsoon rain falling (2 shots)
LV Captured equipment
SV & CU Captured machine gun with Chinese writing (2 shots)
CU & SV Troops under canvas during monsoon rain (3 shots)
Initials OS/2236 RJ/OS/2253
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The "Sovereign Independent Republic of Bangla Desh (Bengali nation)" is just over a day old, but its future is uncertain. Reports from East Pakistan indicate that Pakistani troops are gaining control of many towns in western areas of the province. Even Bangla Desh Prime Minister Tajuddin Ahmed admits the Pakistani forces have superior firepower and are pushing his "Liberation Army" from the towns, though he said the Bangla Desh fighters still controlled the countryside. A Visnews team has been allowed to enter one of the small "headquarters" of the Bangla Desh and film. Chinese and American armaments said to have been captured from Government forces, could be seen. It's from small pockets like this that the civil war may continue to be fought. Government aircraft have been called in to bomb the areas of resistance and a jute truck was one victim.
SYNOPSIS: The civil war in East Pakistan appears to be moving from the towns to the country. Government troops claim to control most of the major cities and the Bangla Desh "Liberation Fighters" have taken to the dense countryside.
Pakistani troops with air support have launched attacks to try to establish control of areas along the India border. A truck carrying jute was hit by an artillery shell and caught fire. The jute was to have been sold to raise money for food.
A Visnews cameraman was given permission to visit a Bangla Desh Headquarters situated in a mango swamp near the town of Meherpur, about 30 miles from the Indian border. It's from camps like this that the Bangla Desh hope to wage a guerilla war against the Government troops.
At the outbreak of fighting, the "Liberation Army" was poorly equipped. As the fighting increase they began arming themselves with weapons captured from the Government forces. Regular patrols are organised. Employing hit and run tactics the Bangla Desh hope to add to their armoury each day. A major problem is the dwindling food supply. With the army in control of most towns, as admitted by the Bangla Desh "Prime Minister", and the fighting being carried out in the country, food is hard to come by for the Bangla Desh soldiers.
The monsoon season is setting in making operations difficult. It could prove beneficial to the "Liberation" forces....though it's not going to improve the food situation.
Among the captured weapons being used by the Bangla Desh are machine guns made in the People's Republic of China. American jeeps and trucks have also been captured from Government forces.