Mateen Ansari

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Mateen Ahmed Ansari
Born 1915
Hyderabad, India
Died 29 October 1943 (aged 27-28)
Hong Kong
Allegiance British India
Service/branch British Indian Army
Rank Captain
Unit 7th Rajput Regiment
Awards George Cross UK ribbon.png George Cross
Headstone of Captain Mateen Ahmed Ansari at Stanley Military Cemetery

Captain Mateen Ahmed Ansari GC (c. 1915 – 29 October 1943) of the 5th Battalion, 7th Rajput Regiment, in the Indian Army during World War II, and member of the British Army Aid Group [1] was awarded the George Cross posthumously. The decoration, the highest British (and Commonwealth) award for bravery out of combat, was announced in a supplement to the London Gazette of 16 April 1946[2] as being awarded for the 'most conspicuous gallantry.'

He was taken prisoner by the Japanese after they invaded Hong Kong in December 1941. After the Japanese discovered that he was related to the ruler of one of the Princely States they demanded that he renounce his allegiance to the British and foment discontent in the ranks of Indian prisoners in the prison camps.[3] He refused and was thrown into the notorious Stanley Jail in May 1942 where he was starved and brutalised. When he remained firm in his allegiance to the British on his return to the prison camps he was again incarcerated in Stanley Jail where he was starved and tortured for five months. He was then returned to the original camp, where he continued in his allegiance to the British, and even helped to organise escape attempts by other prisoners.[3] He was sentenced to death, with over thirty other British, Chinese and Indian prisoners and beheaded on 20 October 1943.[3] He is buried in Stanley Military Cemetery in Hong Kong.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Mateen Ansari, GC". George Cross database. Archived from the original on 2007-11-16. Retrieved 2007-12-01. 
  2. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 37536. p. 1949. 16 April 1946. Retrieved 2007-12-01.
  3. ^ a b c "Commonwealth War Graves Commission — casualty details". Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Retrieved 2007-12-01.  This page gives both 20 October and 29 October as the date of his death. The overall pages for Stanley Military Cemetery suggest that 29 October is correct
  4. ^ Stephen Stratford. "Military history website". Retrieved 2007-12-01. 

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