6th (Poona) Division

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For the World War II formation, see 6th Infantry Division (India).

The 6th (Poona) Division was a division of the British Indian Army. It was formed in 1903, following the Kitchener reforms of the Indian Army.

World War I[edit]

The 6th (Poona) Division served in the Mesopotamian campaign. Led by Major General Barrett then Major General Townshend, the division were the first British Indian troops to land in Mesopotamia in November 1914 at the Fao Landing. After a string of early successes, the 6th Division was delivered a setback at the Battle of Ctesiphon in November 1915. Following this engagement, the division withdrew back to Kut, where Townshend made the decision to hold the city. After a lengthy siege by the Ottomans, Townshend surrendered in April 1916.[1] 10,061 troops were taken captive.[2] Following the surrender, the garrisoned force conducted a forced march back to Anatolia. The suffering of the enlisted soldiers was particularly egregious, and over 4000 died in captivity.[3]

After the surrender, the Poona Division ceased to exist until another 6th Division was raised in 1920 for the Iraq Rebellion.[4]

Order of Battle December 1914[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ See Gardner, Nikolas. 2004 'Sepoys and the Siege of Kut-Al-Amara, December 1915-April 1916', War in History (journal) 11(3), pp. 307-326
  2. ^ Perry, F.W. (1993). History of the Great War: Order of Battle of Divisions: Indian Army Divisions Pt. 5B. Ray Westlake Books. ISBN 1-871167-23-X
  3. ^ Perry, F.W. (1993). History of the Great War: Order of Battle of Divisions: Indian Army Divisions Pt. 5B. Ray Westlake Books. ISBN 1-871167-23-X
  4. ^ Perry, F.W. (1993). History of the Great War: Order of Battle of Divisions: Indian Army Divisions Pt. 5B. Ray Westlake Books. ISBN 1-871167-23-X