Ashok Dinda took three wickets to halt Pakistan's momentum and lead India to an 11-run win, tying the Twenty20 international series 1-1.
Dinda took 3-12 in his final two overs, including the crucial scalp of Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez (55), while Yuvraj Singh scored 72 as India won the second of two T20s against their regional rivals.
In the first bilateral series between the two countries since 2007, the hosts avoided an overall defeat by keeping Pakistan to 7-181 in Ahmedabad.
India batted first and Gautam Gambhir (21) and Ajinkya Rahane (28) gave the home side a solid start, producing a 44-run opening stand before the former was trapped lbw by Umar Gul in the fifth over.
When Rahane followed soon after, Singh came to the crease and the 31-year-old smashed Pakistan's attack to all corners of the stadium, striking seven sixes in his half-century, while Virat Kohli (27) and MS Dhoni (33) provided good support.
Gul was the only wicket-taker for Pakistan and completed his four overs with figures of 4-37.
India finished their innings at 5-192 but looked on the way to another defeat when Pakistan reached 2-146 by the end of their 16th over.
The visitors looked on track to get the 47 runs required off four overs, with Hafeez and Umar Akmal unbeaten on 45 and 24 respectively but then Dinda intervened.
Dinda had conceded five boundaries in his opening two overs but bowled Akmal with the second delivery of his third over.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar snagged Shahid Afridi's wicket in the next over before Dinda struck again, dismissing both Hafeez and Kamran Akmal in the space of three balls and suddenly Pakistan were 172-6, eventually finishing 11 runs short of victory.
Dinda finished with figures of 3-36 off his four overs, while earlier in Pakistan's innings opener Nasir Jamshed had provided a handy innings of 41.
First Posted 29 December, 2012 6:55AM AEST