Indian Troops in Europe 1914-1918 (Hardback)Santanu Das (author)
Hardback 160 Pages / Published: 01/01/2015
- Not available
As Britain declared war on Germany on 4 August 1914, Lord Hardinge, the Viceroy of India, announced that India too was at war, without consulting Indian political leaders. Yet, the responses to the war within India, both from the native princes and the political elite, were largely enthusiastic. The feudal princes who ruled one third of India, were overwhelmingly supportive. Both the Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League supported the war effort, and nationalist leaders backed the Allied effort. The anti-colonial nationalist movement that was burgeoning in India took a backseat for a while when the call for the war effort was made. The spirit of war was such that Sir Pertab Singh, the regent of Jodhpur and the favourite of Queen Victoria, was said to have threatened to sit at the doorstep of the Viceroy in protest if not allowed to serve in the war. Men were heavily recruited, were trained and readied for the voyage across the black waters. On 26 September 1914, the ships carrying the first of the Indian troops from the Lahore Division nudged their way into the harbour at Marseilles. Of all the colonies in the British, French and German empires of the time, British India (comprising present-day India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Burma) contributed the highest number of menboth combatants and non-combatants. Of them, over a million served overseas, specifically in France and Belgium, between August 1914 and December 1919. This book is about these men. It is a visual record of their lives in Europein trenches, fields, farms, billets, markets, towns, cities, railway-stations, hospitals, prisoner-of-campsas well as the world they had left behind in India, the relentless routine of travel and the way we remember them. A memorial at Neuve-Chapelle in the Pas-de-Calais pays tribute to them: To the honour of the Army of India which fought in France and Belgium, 19141918, and in perpetual remembrance of those of their dead whose names are here recorded and who have no known grave. The year 2014 marked the centenary of the start of the First World War. Along the lines of the many commemorative events to be held over the coming four years, this volume pays a tribute to remember and honour those who served India with distinction, bravery and pride. The volume shares interesting unknown anecdotes that supplement the understanding of the context, and documents the prominent contribution of the Indian forces during this tragic conflict.
Publisher: Grantha Corporation
Number of pages: 160
Weight: 994 g
Dimensions: 263 x 253 x 18 mm
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