Brigade of the Guards

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Brigade of the Guards
Brigade of the Guards Insignia.gif
Regimental Insignia of the Brigade of the Guards
Active 1949 - Present
Country India India
Allegiance Indian Army
Branch Army
Type Foot Guards
Role Mechanized Infantry
Size 19 Battalions
Regimental Centre Kamptee, Maharashtra.
Motto Pahla Hamesha Pahla (First Always First)
War Cry Gaurd Ka Hun Bol Pyare (I am from the Guards, Say O my friend)
Theatre Honours Jammu & Kashmir - 1947-48, Rajasthan - 1965, Punjab - 1965, East Pakistan - 1971 and Jammu & Kashmir - 1971
Decorations 2 Param Vir Chakras, 2 Ashoka Chakras, 1 Padma Bhushan, 8 Param Vishisht Seva Medals, 6 Maha Vir Chakras, 4 Kirti Chakras, 46 Vir Chakras, 18 Shaurya Chakras, 77 Sena Medals, 10 Ati Vishisht Seva Medals, 3 Yudh Seva Medals, 16 Vishisht Seva Medals, 45 Mention-in-Despatches, 151 COAS's Commendation Cards and 79 GOC-in-C's Commendation Cards
Battle honours Akhaura, Burki, Gadra Road, Hilli, Naushera, Gurais, Shingo River Valley, Sylhet and Ganga Sagar
Insignia
Regimental Insignia Garuda - A mythological eagle king.
Hackle Red over Yellow
For the British Army unit, see Brigade of Guards.

Brigade of The Guards is a regiment of the Indian Army. It is the first "All India" mixed "All Class" Composition Infantry Regiment of the Army where troops from all parts of India serve together in various battalions of the Regiment. The Guards Brigade was raised to implement the Government's policy of encouraging Army recruitment from classes and regions which had been under-represented in the forces. In the new regiment, called The Guards Brigade, the old system of class composition was replaced with recruitment open to all regions, castes, creeds, and sections of society. Three of the Army's oldest and most distinguished battalions—2nd Battalion of the 2nd Punjab Regiment, 1st Battalion of the Indian Grenadiers Regiment and 1st Battalion of the 6th Rajputana Rifles were converted as Guards battalions in 1949. Later, they were joined by the 1st Battalion of the 7th Rajput Regiment. It is the only regiment of Foot Guards in the Indian Army. Though the Brigade of The Guards is only 50 years old, its constituent battalions go back as far as 225 years and between them share 93 Battle Honours earned around the globe.[1] The President of India is the Honorary Colonel-in-Chief and the Chief of Army Staff is the Colonel-in-Chief of The Guards. The Guards Regimental Centre is at Kamptee in Maharashtra.

History and raising[edit]

Prior to the raising of the Guards, Indian Army infantry regiments derived their name from region, religion or sub=caste. Also there was a message with its formation that country comes ahead of everything else including religion and caste. The Regiment was formed in 1949 as the first mixed class Indian regiment by Field Marshal KM Cariappa OBE to be raised after independence of India. The first battalions of the Brigade of Guards were formed by taking the oldest battalions of some of the infantry regiments of the Indian Army. At the moment Brigade of the Guards consists of 19 battalions, the youngest being the 19th battalion. In the eighties, the Indian Army began to increase the number of mechanized infantry battalions on its order of battle. As part of this program, the battalions of the Brigade of Guards were eventually mechanized infantry.

Operations[edit]

1962 Indo-China War[edit]

Main article: Sino-Indian War

1965 Indo-Pakistan War[edit]

1971 Liberation War[edit]

In the 1971 war, the Brigade of the Guards participated in actions on both the Eastern and the Western fronts. The 14th Guards earned their first PVC ( Param Veer Chakra) through L/Nk Albert Ekka of Bravo Company, for heroism in the Gangasagar theatre: he single-handedly turned the tide against Pakistani defenders, who were firing from LMG and MMG from the top of a building, putting the entire attacking party in risk.

Operation Blue Star[edit]

Further information: Operation Blue Star

The 10th Battalion under Lt. Col. Ishrar Rahim Khan was located in Jullundhar in 1984 and moved to Amritsar to assist the civil administration when Sikh militants were discovered holed up inside the Golden Temple. Along with 1 Para Commando, 10 Guards moved in from the North Entrance to the temple and, though suffering heavy casualties, achieved their objectives. The unit was awarded one Ashok Chakra (Capt JS Rana), one Kirti Chakra and three Shaurya Chakras. Total casualties suffered by the unit was 19 killed and 50 wounded.

UN operations and counter-insurgency operations[edit]

The Brigade of the Guards has also taken part in UN peace keeping operations in Gaza and Angola. The regiment has also been used in counter-insurgency operations in India.[1]

Current strength[edit]

The regiment currently consists of a total of 21 battalions.[2] The majority of these operate as mechanised infantry, with four operating in the reconnaissance and support role, in support of the border force, one is equipped as an anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) battalion and three (including two territorial army) proudly remain as infantry. Today, the regiment is one of three in the Indian Army that is made up of men from the different castes and regions of India.

  • 1st Battalion (Mechanized)(former 2 Punjab)
  • 2nd Battalion (Mechanized)(former 1 Grenadiers)
  • 3rd Battalion (Mechanized) (former 1st Rajputana Rifles)
  • 4th Battalion (Mechanized)(former 1 Rajput)
  • 5th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 6th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 7th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 8th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 9th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 10th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 11th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 12th Battalion (Recce & Sp)
  • 13th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 14th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 15th Battalion (Recce & Sp)
  • 16th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 17th Battalion (Mechanized)
  • 18th Battalion (Mechanised)
  • 19th Battalion (Recce & Sp)
  • 117th Battalion (Territorial Army)
  • 125th Battalion (Territorial Army)

Gallantry Awards[edit]

2 Param Vir Chakras, 2 Ashoka Chakras, 1 Padma Bhushan, 8 Param Vishisht Seva Medals, 6 Maha Vir Chakras, 4 Kirti Chakras, 46 Vir Chakras, 18 Shaurya Chakras, 77 Sena Medals, 10 Ati Vishisht Seva Medals, 3 Yudh Seva Medals, 16 Vishisht Seva Medals, 45 Mention-in-Despatches, 151 COAS's Commendation Cards and 79 GOC-in-C's Commendation Cards

Battle honours[edit]

Pre-Independence[edit]

Delhi 1803; Egypt 1876-1917; British East Africa 1878; Afghanistan 1878–80; Kandahar 1880; Burma 1891; China 1900; East Africa 1914-1916; Mesopotamia 1914- 1918, Egypt 1915, Gallipoli 1915, France and Flanders 1915, Kutal Amarah 1915; Palestine 1916-1918; Tigris 1916; Macedonia 1918; Afghanistan 1919; Donbaik 1943; Italy 1943–45; Burma 1945; J&.K 1947-1948; Selinghar; Carnatic; Mysore; Ava; Pegu; Suez Canal; Nels, Krithia; Laos; Aden; Point-551; Kanghaw; Naushera; Mangalore; Hyderabad; Gaza; Megiodo; Nablus; Curais; Seringapatnam; Beurabone; Punjab; Mooltan; Persia; Reshire; Khooshab; Central India; Basra; Shaiba; Ctesiphon; Defence of Kut-Al-Amara; Sidi Barrani; Keren; Cassino; Castele Hill; Leswarree; Deig; Bharatpore; Khelat; Mahrakpore; Chilianwallah; Goojerat and Punjab.[3]

Post-Independence[edit]

Akhaura, Burki, Gadra Road, Hilli, Naushera, Gurais, Shingo Rivel Valley, Sylhet and Ganga Sagar.[3]

References[edit]

External links[edit]