15th Lancers

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15th Lancers (Baloch)
Badge of 15th Lancers (Baloch).jpg
Active 1922 - 1937; 1955 - Present
Country British Raj British India
Pakistan Pakistan
Branch Army
Type Armoured Regiment
Uniform Dark blue; faced buff
Engagements Bhutan War 1864-65
Second Afghan War 1878-80
First World War 1914-18
Third Afghan War 1919
Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
Battle honours Afghanistan 1879-80, Afghanistan 1919, Khem Karan 1965.

The 15th Lancers (Baloch) is an armoured regiment of the Pakistan Army. It was formed in 1922 by the amalgamation of the 17th Cavalry and the 37th Lancers (Baluch Horse).[1]

17th Cavalry[edit]

The 17th Cavalry was raised in 1857 at Muttra by Colonel CJ Robarts and was composed entirely of Afghans. Throughout its existence, the regiment remained an exclusively Muslim unit. In 1861, after several changes in nomenclature, it was designated the 17th Regiment of Bengal Cavalry. In 1865, it saw action as part of the Bhutan Field Force, while in 1879-80, the regiment operated on lines of communication during the Second Afghan War as part of the Kabul Field Force. During the First World War, it dispatched a squadron to Africa where it took part in the East African Campaign. In 1919, the regiment fought in the Third Afghan War. The regiment maintained a mounted pipe band from 1895 to 1902. The uniform of 17th Cavalry was blue with white facings. The regimental badge consisted of a silver star and crescent over "XVII" with a title scroll below.[2][3]

  • 1857 Muttra Horse
  • 1857 Muttra Police Corps
    37th Lancers (Baluch Horse) (left). Watercolour by Maj AC Lovett, 1910.
  • 1858 Rohilkhand Auxiliary Police Levy
  • 1859 Robarts’ Horse
  • 1861 17th Regiment of Bengal Cavalry
  • 1882 Disbanded
  • 1885 Re-raised
  • 1900 17th Regiment of Bengal Lancers
  • 1901 17th Bengal Lancers
  • 1903 17th Cavalry

37th Lancers (Baluch Horse)[edit]

The 37th Lancers (Baluch Horse) was raised in 1885 as the 7th Bombay Cavalry (Jacob-ka-Risallah) from the manpower of the 3rd Scinde Horse (Belooch Horse), which had been disbanded in 1882. This regiment was also an all-Muslim unit made up of Pathans and Baluchis. Their first chance of active service came in 1919, when they served in the Third Afghan War, although one of their squadrons operated in Persia during the First World War. The regiment's uniform was dark blue (khaki serge when on parade), with buff facings. The badge consisted of crossed lances and pennons with "37" over crossed lances.[2][3][4]

  • 1885 7th Bombay Cavalry (Jacob-ka-Risallah)
  • 1886 7th Bombay Cavalry (Belooch Horse)
  • 1890 7th Bombay Lancers (Belooch Horse)
  • 1903 37th Lancers (Baluch Horse)

15th Lancers[edit]

After the First World War, the number of Indian cavalry regiments was reduced from thirty-nine to twenty-one. However, instead of disbanding the surplus units, it was decided to amalgamate them in pairs. This resulted in renumbering and renaming of the entire cavalry line. The 17th Cavalry and 37th Lancers (Baluch Horse) were amalgamated at Lucknow in 1922 to form the 15th Lancers. Meanwhile, an existing 15th Lancers (Cureton's Multanis) joined the 14th Murray's Jat Lancers to form the 20th Lancers.[1][3][5][6]

The uniform of the new 15th Lancers was dark blue with buff facings, while the badge consisted of crossed silver lances bearing pennons with "XV" at the crossing and a scroll below. The same uniform and badges are still in use by the regiment.[2]

In 1937, the 15th Lancers became the training regiment of the 1st Indian Cavalry Group. It was converted into a training centre in 1940 by amalgamating it with the 12th Cavalry (Frontier Force). However, the next year, the Centre was disbanded.[1] In 1955, the 15th Lancers was re-raised by the Pakistani Army as a Reconnaissance Regiment of the Pakistan Armoured Corps and equipped with M24 Chaffee light tanks. During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, the regiment served with great distinction in the Kasur Sector and was awarded the Battle Honour 'Khem Karan 1965.' In 1969, the 15th Lancers was affiliated with the Baluch Regiment (now called the Baloch Regiment) due to the old link with the 37th Lancers (Baluch Horse). It added the title of 'Baluch' to its designation in 1989.[2]

  • 1922 17th/37th Cavalry (amalgamation of 17th Cavalry and 37th Lancers)
  • 1922 15th Lancers
  • 1940 1st Indian Armoured Corps Centre (amalgamation of 15th Lancers and 12th Cavalry)
  • 1941 Disbanded
  • 1955 15th Lancers (re-raised)
  • 1989 15th Lancers (Baluch)
  • 1991 15th Lancers (Baloch)[7]

Affiliations and alliances[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Ahmad, Lt Col RN. (2010). Battle Honours of the Baloch Regiment. Abbottabad: The Baloch Regimental Centre.
  2. ^ a b c d 15th Lancers (Baloch): Through the Ages 1858-1998. (1998). Lahore: 15th Lancers.
  3. ^ a b c Gaylor, John (1991). Sons of John Company: The Indian and Pakistan Armies 1903–91. Stroud: Spellmount. 
  4. ^ Cadell, Sir Patrick. (1938). History of the Bombay Army. London: Longmans & Green.
  5. ^ Sandhu, Maj Gen GS. (1981). The Indian Cavalry: History of the Indian Armoured Corps till 1940. New Delhi: Vision Books.
  6. ^ Harris, RG, and Warner, C. (1979). Bengal Cavalry Regiments 1857–1914. London: Osprey.
  7. ^ In 1991, the spelling of 'Baluch' was changed to 'Baloch' to better reflect the correct pronunciation.

Further reading[edit]

  • 15th Lancers (Baloch): Through the Ages 1858-1998. (1998). Lahore: 15th Lancers.
  • Yeats-Brown, Major FCC. (1927). The Star and Crescent: Being the Story of the 17th Cavalry from 1858 To 1922. Allahabad: The Pioneer Press.
  • Ahmad, Lieutenant Colonel Rifat Nadeem. (2010). Battle Honours of the Baloch Regiment. Abbottabad: The Baloch Regimental Centre.
  • Ahmed, Major General Rafiuddin. (2000). History of the Baloch Regiment 1939-1956. Abbottabad: The Baloch Regimental Centre. ISBN 1-84574-094-7
  • Gaylor, J. (1992). Sons of John Company: The Indian and Pakistan Armies 1903- 1991. Stroud: Spellmount Publishers Ltd. ISBN 978-0-946771-98-1
  • Cadell, Sir Patrick. (1938). History of the Bombay Army. London: Longmans & Green.
  • Cardew, FG. (1903). A Sketch of the Services of the Bengal Native Army to the Year 1895. Calcutta: Military Department.
  • Harris, RG, and Warner, C. (1979). Bengal Cavalry Regiments 1857–1914. London: Osprey Publishing. ISBN 978-0-85045-308-9.
  • Sandhu, Maj Gen GS. (1981). The Indian Cavalry: History of the Indian Armoured Corps till 1940. New Delhi: Vision Books.
  • Kempton, C. (1996). A Register of Titles of the Units of the H.E.I.C. & Indian Armies 1666-1947. Bristol: British Empire & Commonwealth Museum. ISBN 978-0-9530174-0-9

External links[edit]