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Ed's Indian Iceberg


Ed_Haynes
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While I have but up here items from the "margins" of my collecting interests (Soviet, Mongolian, Afghan, etc.), I have yet to address my core collecting and research field: Medals to officers and soldiers (Indians only) of the Indian military, both before and after 1947. (When I say "India", I use it as shorthand for South Asia, and post-1947 this can be taken to include Pakistani awards.)

As my interests are focused on Indians, and I really have no particular interest in awards to Europeans (though a couple of accidental groups have crept in), what I do is often -- at best -- marginalised within traditional "British" medal collecting. At times, this has led to unpleasant interactions with some "British" medal collectors. This is unfortunate. I hope that even they find some interest in what I'll post here. As I am a professional historian, some histoprical comntext will also be presented.

I call this an "iceberg", for what I'll be putting up are the high points, and there is much much more beneath the water. Some of these items may be hidden away elsewhere on the forum, but I hope that this will give a bit more copherence and focus that the earlier posts.

While I do not have any special interest in medals to Gorkhas or medals to the police, the workings of the cosmos have brought some nice Gorkha and police items my way. Be assured both are quite accidental.

In some cases more details are available over at http://sagongs.ipbhost.com/index.php (please send me a PM or e-maiol if you want to join that forum too) but in most cases what I'll give here constituites an improvement on even those posts, much less posts found elsewhere on this forum.

As always, serious comments and questions are solicited and are welcomed.

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2466 Naik Amarbahadur Khattri, IOM, 1/9th Gurkha Rifles

A Hindu Gorkha, Sayan Dhumurya, Razasthal, No. 2 West, Lamjung, Nepal.

1- Indian Order of Merit, 2nd class, 1939-45

London Gazette 21 September 1944, p. 4371. The recommendation for the IOM is shown below.

"During the operations on Monastery Hill above Cassino between 15th and 34th March 1944, this NCO showed courage and devotion of an outstanding quality. Naik Amarbahadur was acting Platoon Havildar of one of the platoons of the company which, alone, captured Hangman's Hill on Monte Cassino on the 16th March 1944. When the company had secured Hangman's Hill the Germans brought intense small arms, mortar and shell fire to bear on the hill top from the Monastery and adjacent ridges, which overlooked Hangman's Hill from point blank range. After enduring this for some time, Naik Amarbahadur picked up a Bren gun, the crew of which had become casualties, and climbed to the highest pinnacle of the rock, where the best view of the enemy could be obtained but which also was completely exposed. From this position he engaged the enemy, particularly a mortar which was causing considerable damage to the company. So effectively did he do this, that the mortar was silenced. He was shortly afterwards wounded, but continued to fight on and engage machine gun posts under the Monastery wall. It was not until the situation quieted down considerably that this NCO allowed himself to be removed and have his wound dressed.?

2- India General Service Medal, 1936-39 - NORTH WEST FRONTIER 1936-37, NORTH WEST FRONTIER 1937-39 "2446 RFM. AMARBAHADUR KHATTRI, 1-9 G.R."

3- 1939-45 Star "2446 NK. AMMARBAHADUR KHATTRI, 9 G.R."

4- Africa Star "2446 NK. AMMARBAHADUR KHATTRI, 9 G.R."

5- Italy Star "2446 NK. AMMARBAHADUR KHATTRI, 9 G.R."

6- The Defence Medal, 1939-45 "2446 NK. AMMARBAHADUR KHATTRI, 9 G.R."

7- The War Medal, 1939-45 "2446 NK. AMMARBAHADUR KHATTRI, 9 G.R."

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78105 Rifleman Asarsing Limbu, MM, 1/7th Gurkha Rifles

Intersestingly, he was a Gorkha from Sikkim (Ganju Lama VC, MM -- and a Buddhist -- also of 7GR was another of the Gorkha diaspora living in Sikkim).

1- Military Medal "78105 RFMN. ASARSING LIMBU GR"

Award published in London Gazette 2 August 1945, p. 3860.

Recommendation from WO 373/40:

"On the night of 22/23 March 1945 at MEIKTILA a strong enemy force later estimated at two Bns, with two guns attacked the battalion perimeter.

"The fiercest part of this attack, which was not only supported by the two guns at point blank range but also by MMG, LMG and mortar fire, was located in the area of the main road. No 78105 Rifleman Asarsing Limbu was defending the slit trench nearest the road and opposite our MMG post when the enemy made a sudden rush covered by very heavy fire in attempt to overrun the MMG position. Some of the enemy succeeded in penetrating the wire. Riflman Asarsing Limbi with complete disregard for danger left his slit trench and attacked them with grenades and his bayonet, killing three and driving the rest back.

"He then returned to his trench and replenished his supply of grenades. Four times he drove the enemy out and accounted for about fifteen to twenty of the enemy. Early in the morning he volunteered to go forward with a clearing party and moving well ahead killed one sniper and engaged a second whom he also killed after being wounded by a grenade. This riflemans dash and determination to kill the enemy was an example and inspiration to all."

He was also wounded B II p. 519 s.l. 504 - 78105 Asarsingh Limbu 23 March 1945, Burma IV.

Bate & Smith, p. 437: 78150 Rfn. Limbu, A., Burma, LG 2 August 1945, p. 3960

General Slim witnessed this deed, see his Defeat into Victory.

2- 1939-45 Star "78105 RFN. ASARSING LIMBU, 7 G.R."

3- Burma Star "78105 RFN. ASARSING LIMBU, 7 G.R."

4- The War Medal, 1939-45 "78105 RFN. ASARSING LIMBU, 7 G.R."

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IO-24563 Jemadar Rajpal Singh, MC, 9th Royal Deccan Horse

Enrolled 14 May 1937

Driver MT Class I

Armament Course - grade Q-1

English 1st class

Jemadar 24 Oct 1942

F.S.C.A. from 1 October 1944 to 22 October 1945

Discharged 11 May 1946 (medical board, exemplary character)

Although the group is entirely unnamed (!), it came direct from the family with a good bit of documentation, including the photographs shown. The group also includes his ribbon bar, jemadar's stars, and a wound stripe.

1- Military Cross, George VI, first variety, 1945

MC action of 21/28 May 1945, Burma, London Gazette, 20 September 1945, p. 4677. The recommendation:

"On the MAWCHI rd on 21 May 45 Jem RAJPAL SINGH was leading the tp being used in sp of the inf. Advancing, his tank was hit by a 47 mm AP shell. He was ordered by the Tp Comd to withdraw but having seen the flash he held his ground knowing he would be unable to locate it if he went back to cover. His rapid fire then forced the crew to abandon the gun. A 75 mm then opened fire and this he silenced with a direct hit. During this enaggement his tk was hit five times, one jamming the cupola and fracturing the periscope. This action enabled inf to adv and three guns were captured.

"On 28 May he was loading with a coy of 4 GR. One of his guns jammed but rather than hold up the adv he pressed on but was hit five times by the enemy guns destroying the tk and killing the crew. The Jem. escaped with severe burns.

"This Jemadars courage and steadiness has been a very fine example to all."

2- 1939-45 Star

3- Burma Star

4- The War Medal, 1939-45 (medal mounted reversed)

5- The India Service Medal, 1939-45

And a "before" and "way after" photo of the man.

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SS 14304 Lieutenant Jagatsingh Gurung, IDSM, 3/5th Gorkha Rifles (Frontier Force)

Hindu Gurkha, Lapsibot, 4000 Parbat, No. 4 West, Nepal.

Enrolled 1 December 1924

Jemadar 1 October 1940

W. S. Subadar

Wounded B II p. 384 s.l. 287 - IO 9577 Sub. Jagtasing Gurung, 1/5 GR, 12 May 1944 - Italy

By October 1946 with Regimental Centre

8 December 1947 - commissioned as a lieutenant (SS 14304)

By December 1957, acting captain

The previous owner had Spink mount this group in a blissfully incorrect order (the Independence Medal should, of course, come first!). Grumble. As this is such a pretty mounting (Spink, after all), I have not had the heart (yet) to break up and remount the group. I present his medals in the proper order, though this is not (yet) reflected in the way they are mounted.

(I have listed this group, in a somewhat arbitrary fashion, as a pre-1947 group. It could just as easily be categorised as a post-1947 group.)

1- The Indian Independence Medal, 1947 "SUBDR. JAGATSING GURUNG, 5 G.R."

2- Indian Distinguished Service Medal, George VI "JEMDR. JAGTASING GURUNG, 1-5 R.G.R."

To "IO 9577 Jemadar Jagatsingh Gurung, IDSM, 1/5th Royal Gurkha Rifles". Recommendation (originally for IOM, downgraded to IDSM):

?Near St.NICOLA on 3 JAN 44, a t 0900 hrs, this Gurkha officer was in Comd of a Pl, 20 strong, ordered to attack a group of houses on the far side of a steep valley.

"On reaching the bottom of the valley heavy enemy M.G. fire was opened from both flanks causing numerous casualties.

"Although withdrawal was possible, JEM. JAGTASING by personal example and leadership infiltrated this Pl, now only 12 strong, forward to the far side of the enemy under continuous fire to within 50 yards of the houses.

"He held this position in the face of numerous determined counter-attacks throughout the hours of daylight. By midday ammunition was running short, he pooled it for firing under his orders and prepared to hold his position with bayonets if necessary.

"Having received ammunition after dark, he resumed the offensive and captured his objective.

"The personal courage, unflinching determination and leadership displayed by Jem JAGTASING GURUNG was entirely responsible for the success of the operation.?

3- India General Service Medal, 1908-35, George V, 2nd variety - NORTH WEST FRONTIER 1930-31 "2953 RFM. JAGATSINGH GURUNG, 1-5 G.R."

4- India General Service Medal, 1936-39 - NORTH WEST FRONTIER 1936-37 "2953 HAV. JAGATBAHADUR GURUNG, 1-5 R.G.R."

5- 1939-45 Star "I.O. 9577 SUBDR. JAGTASING GURUNG, 3/5 R.G.R."

6- Italy Star "I.O. 9577 SUBDR. JAGTASING GURUING, 3/5 R.G.R."

7- The Defence Medal, 1939-45 "I.O. 9577 SUBDR. JAGTASING GURUNG, 3/5 R.G.R."

8- The War Medal, 1939-45 "I.O. 9577 SUBDR. JAGTASING GURUNG, 3/5 R.G.R."

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Langri Jhanda Singh, IOM, 1st Sikh Infanty

1- Indian Order of Merit, 3rd class, 1839-1911 "Langri Cook Jhanda Singh 1st Sikh Infy"

IAO 865 of 1897:

"Langri (Cook) JHANDA SINGH, 1st Sikh Infanty, was admitted to the 3rd class, for conspicuous gallantry on the same occasion [attack on politucal officer's escort at Maizar, 10 June 1897], in having when Lance-Naik Atr Singh [posthumous IOM3] was killed, run out and brought in the box of ammunition the Naik was carrying when he met his death."

[Hypher II: 109-10]

2- India Medal, 1895-1902, Victoria, bronze - PUNJAB FRONTIER 1897-98

Unnamed (!), attributed to Langri Jhanda Singh, IOM, 1st Sikhs. Possible "restoration"?

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2649 Rifleman Manbir Ale (III), IOM, 43rd Bengal Infantry

enlisted early 1889?

died in service between June 1898 and December 1898

1- Indian Order of Merit, 3rd class, 1839-1911

GGO 647 of 1891:

"The undermentioned non-commissioned officers and men were admitted tp the 3rd class, in recognition of the gallantry and devotion displayed by them while serving under the command of Lieutenant C. J. W. Grant, V.C., 12th (Burma) Regiment of Madras Infantry, during the advance on, and defence of Thobal from the 28th March to the 9th April [1891], in connection with the measures that were taken to restore order in Manipur and to exact retribution for the murder of the Chief Commissioner of Assam and other British officers, in March 1891:--

"43rd (Gurkha) Regiment of Bengal Infantry (Rifles):

" . . .

"No. 2649, Sepoy Manbir Ale (III)

". . . ."

Recommendations in Military Proceedings, Manipur A, 1891, 490-510. Description of the action in Military Proceedings, Manipur A, 1891, 479-82.

2- India General Service Medal, 1854-95 - N. E. FRONTIER 1891 "2649. Sepoy Manbir Ale. 43d Bl Infy"

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79 Lascar Boy Sheikh Mahomed, R.I.M.S. Hardinge

1- Sea Gallantry Medal, Edward VII, silver, small, "Awarded by the Board of Trade for Gallantry in Saving Life" named in engraved capitals "SHEIK MAHOMED. 3rd MAY. 1901.

2- Africa General sevice, Edward VII, Somaliland 1902-04, named in impressed capitals: "79 LSCR. BOY SHEIK MOHOMED. R.I.M.S. HARDINGE."

To date, this one has dodged all research attempts in both New Delhi and London. Help?!?!?!

Edited by Ed_Haynes
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IO-24563 Jemadar Rajpal Singh, MC, 9th Royal Deccan Horse

You have some of the most fabulous groups! This is my favorite of all in this thread. What was his rank equivalent? I am guessing that he was an officer?

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You have some of the most fabulous groups! This is my favorite of all in this thread. What was his rank equivalent? I am guessing that he was an officer?

He was a Viceroy's Commissioned Officer, a uniquely Indian Army system. Until WWII, few Indians were allowed to hold rank as King's commissioned officer. You may characterise this policy as you wish. In most battalions, the hard work was done by the VCOs, the seniormost Indian officers (in an Infantry unit: Subadar-Major, Subadar, Jemedar).

Does this help? I could go on and on.

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Havildar Jagat Sing Rana, 5th Gurkha Regiment

1- Indian Order of Merit, 3rd class, 1839-1911 "Sepoy Juggut Sing 5th Gookhir Regt."

Order of Merit announced in GGO 89 of 24 Jan 1879, Afghanistan - joint citation with Bugler Soorbir Damai, Sepoy Kishnbiar Nuggurkoti (who would later win promotion to the 1st Class and then won a unique special gold bar for a fourth baward) and Sepoy Hushtbir Khuttrie: "For conspicuous gallantry in checking the advance of the enemy in action at the Mangiar Pass on the 13th December 1878."

Roberts' despatch of 18 December 1878: "The conduct and steady behaviour of the 5th Goorkhas on the occasion merit my warmest commendations. For nearly five hours this Regiment maintained a rear-guard fight over most difficult ground with a bold and active enemy thoroughly acquainted with the locality, and so successfully was this duty performed that not a single baggage animal or load was lost. It is therefore my pleasure and my duty to bring the gallant conduct of this fine Regiment once more to the special notice of His Excellency and the Government in India."

IOM personally presented by Lord Roberts, on Queen's Birthday Parade on 24 May 1879.

2- India General Service Medal, 1854-95 - JOWAKI 1879-8, NORTHWEST FRONTIER, UMBEYLA "Sepoy Jaggut Sing, 5th Goorkha Regt."

3- Second Afghan War, 1878-80 - PEIWAR KOTAL, CHARASIA, KABUL, KANDAHAR "Havr. Jagat Sing Rana 5th Goorkha Regt"

4- Kabul to Kandahar Star "Havr. Jagat Sing Rana 5th Goorkha Regt"

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6809 Rifleman Dholi Gurung, IDSM, 2/5th Royal Gurkha Rifles

1- Indian Distinguished Service Medal, George V, 2nd variety - 6809 RFM DHOLI GURUNG, 2-5 R.G.R.

Chhina, p. 239: 6809 Rifleman Dholi Gurung, 2/5th Royal Gurkha Rifles, March 1937, GO 324/1937 (5 IDSMs in this GO), N.W. Frontier

Confirmed as for the defence of Damdil piquet, one of the great Gorkha actions of the 20th century.

2- India General Service Medal, 1936-39 - NORTH WEST FRONTIER 1936-37 - 6809 RFM DHOLI GURUNG, 2-5 G.R.

Gaylor (p. 233): ". . . the only regiment to receive the between-wars North-West Frontier battle honours" = "North West Frontier 1936-39"

This is almost certainly his complete entitlement, as there wasn't much left of the few survivors.

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A badly and sadly :( broken group. Where are all the missing medals?!?

IO-47757 Jemadar Sanbahadur Gurung, VrC, MC, 2/8th Gurkha Rifles

Born - 18 October 1915, v. Niranganpur, Dehra Dun, UP

Father - Sh Man Bahadur

Religion - Hindu

Enrolled - 18 Oct 1932

Jemadar - 9 February 1944

1- Military Cross, George VI, first variety, 1945

MC - Italy, London Gazette, 13 December 1945, p. 6076. Recommendation (WO 373/14):

"On 14 Apr 45 Jem Sanbahadur led his pl in an assault against the CORRECHIO canal in order to est a firm base for the crossing of the SILLARO river. Although pinned by intense enemy mortaring and spandau fire the pl eventually reached and captured an enemy strong point with the loss of seven men wounded. At the same time th enemy had sustained considerable cas incl two killed whilst in addition 4 prisoners were taken. Barely had he secured his objective before the enemy in superior numbers began to inflitrate around his flanks.

"Calling for mortar fire which he personally directed he succeeded in forcing the enemy to withdraw. The remainder of the coy moving up behind Jam Sanbahadur was thus able to cross the canal and firmly est itself.

"The next day another Bn, the 2/10 [GR] successfully assaulted and crossed the SILLARO river. The success of this important action was partly due to the brilliant exploit of Jem Sanbahadur.

"Subsequently, on 19 Apr, this VCO led his pl in the night attack on the river GAIANA. He was amongst the first to cross the river in the face of hy spandau fire and grenading which caused considerable cas in his pl. Undaunted and with exemplary courage Jem Sanbahadur quickly re-organised his rections before assaulting the second objective which he did successfully. Despite hy enemy shelling and mortaring this gallant platoon commander continued to move from one section to another encouraging his men. "During the whole of the operations from 9 Apr to 2 May Jem Sanbahadur constantly displayed superb dash and gallantry, outstsnding leadership a disregard of danger worthy of the highest praise."

2- India General Service Medal, 1936-39 - NORTH WEST FRONTIER 1937-39 - 8869 RFN. SUNBAHADUR GURUNG, 2-8 G R

3- The General Service Medal, 1918-64, George VI (4th obverse, 1949-52) - PALESTINE 1945-48 - 47757 JEMDR. SANBAHADUR GURUNG, 2-8 G.R.

Later awarded the Vir Chakra for Jammu and Kashmir (15 Nov 1948); Gandhi I, p. 370 (Gandhi II, p. 466):

"Subedar San Bahadur Gurung, commanding a platoon at Leh, was ordered to recapture Lasirmou at a height of 18,270 ft. On the night of 29 July 1948, he appeared in the rear of the enemy position after a strenuous night of 13 hrs. in extrenmely difficult terrain. His successful attack resulted in the rout of the enemy who left behind many dead and one prisoner.

"In October, he worked as second in command of guerillas behind the enemy lines, destroying an enemy 3.7-inch howitzer at Basgo. Again in November he went 70 miles behind the enemy lines and destroyed a big enemy ammunition column at Lamayuru.

"On all these occasions he showed outstanding bravery, devotion to duty and leadership."

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Subadar Mohd. Sher, IDSM, 3/1st Punjab Regiment

Punjabi Muslim, Sudhan-Barul, Sudhonti, Poonch State

Enrolled - 19 January 1924

Jemadar - 12 March 1941 (in the context of this action?)

Subadar - ??? (War Substantive Subadar)

IAL Jan 1942 War Services Sup., p. 382, shows NO additional war services

1- Indian Distinguished Service Medal, George VI - JEMDR. MOHD. SHER, 3-1 PUNJAB R.

Chhina, p. 201 - I.D.S.M. - LG 30 December 1941, p. 7339 - 151-H/1941, for Italian East Africa (only one to the regiment for that theater).

Reccomendation in WO 373/29 - Company Havildar Major (now Jemadar) Mohammed Sher, 3/1st Punjab Regiment, 5th Indian Infantry Brigade, 4th Indian Division:

?On 10 February 1941 during the attack on HOGS BACK this N.C.O. showed great coolness and disregard for personal safety in moving about (in his functions as Company Havildar Major) and assisting his Coy. Commander.

"On 11 Feb 1941 during the action on BRIGS PEAK Coy Hav Major MOHAMMED SHER again showed outstanding bravery and coolness. He moved freely amongst the forward sections encouraging Section commanders. When the enemy pressed home his attack Coy Hav Major MOHAMMED SHER was present in assisting the defence and freely exposed himself in throwing bombs at the enemy.

"11 March 1941 on Pt 1710 when the Coy had suffered 4 killed and 3 wounded by mortar fire, Coy Hav Major MOHAMMED SHER showed disregard for personal safety by carrying back wounded men to safety whilst under mortar fire.

"This N.C.O's name was submitted for bravery at TUMMAR WEST."

5 Feb 1941, 3/1st Punjab placed under command of 11th Indian Infantry Brigade, and shifted from Agordat to the area of kilometers 109-110 by 1715 hours. At 1600 hours on the 6th, the 3/1st went into combat in support of the 1st Rajputana Rifles and bore heavy Italian counter-attacks, depecially against "D" company. Sanchil and Brigg's Peak taken, but lost again.

10 Feb 1941, 3/1st Punjab sent against Brigg's Peak at 1500 hours: "B" coy to Hog's Back, "A" coy to Saddle, "C" coy to the center of Brigg's Peak, and "D" coy to the right feature of Brigg's Peak - captured, by Italian counterattack by 1715 - consolidated all except the right efature by close of the day - 11 Feb, "D" coy counterattacked the right feature at 0530 and took it - held positions under continuous shellfire - 2300 hours on 11 Feb a major Italian counterattack drove 3/1st off Brigg's Peak by 0230 with 11 killed and 40 wounded - 3/1st to 5th Indian Infantry Brigade. Back to forward line on 15/16 February 1941. By mid-March 1941, to serve in reserve in attack by 4th Sikhs on Mt. Samanna, to secure poritions on the line Mt.Jepio-Pt. 1572-Pt. 1710- Pt. 1702.

Recipient was commissioned Jemadar on 12th March 1941.

2- 1939-45 Star - unnamed

3- Africa Star - unnamed

4- Italy Star - unnamed

5- Defence Medal - unnamed

6- WWII War Medal, MiD - unnamed

7- France: Croix de Guerre, 1939, bronze palm

The CdG is shown in Qureshi's regimental history, most probably for actions at Kissoue, outside of Damascus, Syria, where he was wounded on 13 June 1941. Five CdGs were awarded to the regiment for this campaign, but only two to Indians. The Regimental History records him as being wounded at Kissoue, outside Damascus on 13th June 1941. The History also records the award of the Croix de Guerre (for Syria) and also confirms the M.I.D. (for the same action?).

A nice W.W.2 ?Three Decorations? group. As it is a (post-1947) "Pakistani" group, all but the IDSM are unnamed, there is some concern about "restoration", but the source is solid, so . . . ?

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Risaldar-Major Mir Alam Khan, Sardar Bahadur, IOM, 1st Punjab Cavalry

1- Indian Order of Merit, 3rd class - unnamed

Admission to the IOM3 was for the action at Rampur Kasia on 3 Nov 1858 during the early stages of the so-called 'winter campaign' in Oudh.

Advancement to the IOM2 was for gallantry at Syad-but in Shorawak on 27 March 1879 where the escort to Mr O.T. Duke, Asst Agent to the Gov-Gen for Baluchistan, fended off an attack by 1,600 Baraitch Pathans. Mir Alam was also mentioned for Ahmad Khel on 19.4.1880 where he 'set a good example to all by his forwardness'.

The group was acquired years ago in Pakistan with this IOM along with it. Where are his other medals?!

2- Mutiny Medal - no clasp - "Naib Risaldar Mir Alam Khan 1st Reg Punjab Cavy"

Enrolled 1 April 1858 as Jemadar without prior service in the ranks

Ressaidar 1 May 1868

Risaldar 1 November 1878.

Risaldar Major 13 June 1882

retired in 1885 or soon thereafter

My guess is that he was entitled to three campaign medals: Mutiny no clasp, IGS one clasp NWF, Afghan one clasp Ahmad Khel.

His awards were:

IOM3 GGO 645 of 29 April 1859 (wef 3 November 1858)

IOM2 PGO 190 of 19 March 1880 (wef 27 March 1879)

OBI2 GGO 571 of 21 October 1881

OBI1 GGO ??? of 17 October 1885

There are many mysteries surrounding this group, but the source in Pakistan is both old and good. Who knows??

Edited by Ed_Haynes
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3021 Sepoy Nand Singh, IOM, 45th Sikh Regiment

1- Indian Order of Merit, 3rd class - unnamed

IOM for defence of Chakrada Fort, one of the great Victorian "defences" (better than Chitral or Rorke's Drift?!). Written up as a full chapter in Winston Churchill's Malakand Field Force.

Hypher II:119, IAO 49 of 14 January 1898:

"No. 3021 Sepoy Nand Singh, 45th (Sikh) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. ? For conspicuous gallantry at a critical moment of the attack on Chakdarra Fort on the 2nd August 1897, in spontatenously taking the lead in serving the 9-pr gun under a heavy fire, the commander, Kishen Singh [2807 Havildar, killed by gunshot], having been killed whilst laying the gun."

Shown (IAL Jan 1919, 3:1982) as retired as Havildar.

2- The India Medal 1895 - PF 97-98, MALAKAND 1897, TIRAH 1897-98, Waz 1901-2 - "3021 Sepoy Nand Singh 45th Sikhs"

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Subadar Rur Singh, 32nd Sikh Pioneers

1- Indian Distinguished Service Medal, Edward VII - Subdr Rur Singh 32d Sikh Pioneers

Most likely an award for Tibet, but these Edward VII IDSMs are challenging (at best :banger:) to research.

2- India General Service Medal, 1854 - HAZARA 1891, SIKKIM 1888 - 2396 Sepoy Rur Singh 32d Bl Infy

3- India Medal 1895 - WAZIRISTAN 1901-2, RELIEF OF CHITRAL 1895 - 2396 Havdr Rur Singh 32nd Bl Infy

4- Tibet Medal - GYANTSE - Subdr Rur Singh 32nd Sikh Pioneers

5- India General Service Medal, 1908 - George V, 1st variety - ABOR 1911 - Subadar Rur Singh 32nd Sikh Pioneers

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Major H.H. Maharaja Nihal Singh, C.B., Lokendra Bahadur of Dholpur

1- Companion of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath

2- India Medal 1895 - Victoria - TIRAH 1897-98, PUNJAB FRONTIER 1897-98 - Major HH Maharaja Nihal Singh, C.B., Lokendra Bahadur of Dholpur

This is one of the first two CBs awarded to Indians and was VERY controversial at the time.

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2951940 Havildar Udai Raj Singh, VrC, 6th Bn., Rajput Regiment

Born - 25 August 1942, v. Raotapur, Unnao, UP

Father - Sh. Jalim Singh

Enrolled - 25 August 1962

Religion - Hindu

1- Vir Chakra "SEP. U. R. SINGH (2951940), RAJPUT R"

"On 11 December 1971, Sepoy Udai Raj Singh was with a company of Rajput Regiment which was assigned the task of attacking an enemy position in the Eastern Sector. As the assault progressed half way up to the objective, the enemy brought heavy machine gun fire. With utter disregard for his safety, he rushed forward, took up position and started engaging the enemy machine gun. Later, he moved towards the bunker, leapt inside and killed the crew.

"Thereafter, he fought from bunker to bunker along with his section and was instrumental in capturing the objective.

"In this action, Sepoy Udai Raj Singh displayed determination and devotion to duty of a high order."

2- The General Service Medal, 1947 - NAGA HILLS "2951940 SEP. UDAI RAJ SINGH, RAJPUT R"

3- Samar Seva Star, 1965 "2941940 SEP. UDAIRAJ SINGH, RAJPUT R."

4- Poorvi Star, 1971 "2941940 NK U R SINGH VRC RAJPUT R."

5- Raksha Medal, 1965 "2941940 SEP UDAI RAJ SINGH, RAJPUT R."

6- Sangram Medal, 1971 "2841940 NK U. R. SINGH VRC RAJPUT R"

7- Sainya Seva Medal - Jammu Kashmir "2941940 SEP. UDAIRAJ SINGH, RAJPUT R."

8- 25th Independence Anniversary Medal, 1972 "2941940 NK U. R. S. VRC RAJPUT R"

9- Twenty Years Long Service Medal no medal, robbon only, never awarded

10- Nine Years Long Service Medal "2941940 LNK UDAIRAJ SINGH, VRC RAJPUT R."

Original, if somewhat salty, mounting.

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JC-36217 Subadar (Honorary Captain) Durgabahadur Gurung, SM, 3rd Bn., 1st Gorkha Rifles

1- Sena Medal "5031338 HAV. DURGABAHADUR GURUNG 3/1 G.R. - 1963"

Not. No. 8-Pres./63 of 26 January 1963, Gazette of India pt. 1, sect. 1, 26 January 1963, p. 59:

"8. 5031338 Havildar DURGABAHADUR GURUNG, 3 Bn., 1st Gorkha Rifles.

"On 5th December 1961 the 3/1 Gorkha Rifles was ordered to clear a strategic road in Katanga. When Captain Salaria, with two Sections of Gorkhas and two Swedish Armoured Personnel Carriers arrived at a position about 1,500 yards from the road block, he came under heavyh automatic and small arms fire from enemy dug-in position on his right flank. Captain Salaria and his men killed 40 of the enemy and knocked out two Armoured cars but when he was wounded and collapsed due to profuse bleeding the command of this small gallant band of men devolved on Havildar Durgabahadur Gurung, at a most critical juncture. The enemy continued firing relentlessly. The ammunition of our troops was running low and wireless contact with battalion headquarters had been lost.

"Havildar Durgabahadur Gurung organised the remnants of his force into a defensive position under heavy enemy fire. He obtained mortar support and repeatedly broke up enemy counter-attacks remaining with his men until he was ordered to withdraw.

"Havildar Gurung displayed cool courage and devotion to duty under difficult circumstances."

This was the action for which IC-8497 Captain Gurbachan Singh Salaria, 3/1st Gurkha Rifles posthumously received the Param Vir Chakra. The captain gets them into a fix, gets killed and gets the PVC; the havildar steps in, gets them out of the mess, and gets only a bloody Sena Medal?!?!

2- Raksha Medal, 1965 "JC-36217 N-SUB D.B. GURUNG, G.R."

3- Sangram Medal, 1971 "JC-36217 SUB/HONY CAPT. D.B. GURUNG. 1. G.R."

4- Sainya Seva Medal - Jammu Kashmir "5031338 HAV D. B. GURUNG, G.R."

5- Videsh Seva Medal - Congo "5031338 HAV. DURGABAHADUR GURUNG, G.R."

6- The Indian Independence Medal, 1947 "25201 RFN. DURGABAHADUR GURUNG, 1 G.R."

7- 25th Independence Anniversary Medal, 1972 "JC-36217 SUB/HONY/CAPT. D. B. GRG. 1.G.R."

8- Twenty Years Long Service Medal "JC-36217 SUB. D.B. GURUNG. S.M. G.R."

9- Nine Years Long Service Medal "JC-36217 SUB D.B.GURUNG. SM. G.R."

10- United Nations - Organisationes des Nationes Unies du Congo (ONUC), 2nd medal, 1960-63 unnamed as issued

Was there a policy of keeping gallantry award winners out of subsequent combat so as to protect them?

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Deputy Superintendent of Police (Officiating) Khyatendra Pal Singh, United Provinces

Mounted by Spink, nicely as usual, but with major errors, as usual what they do to and for South Asian medals. Grumble. The Special Duty medal has the ribbon reversed (OK, they had a 50% chance of getting it right) and the Independence medal is reversed (also 50:50) and has the incorrect ribbon (Queen's South Africa). Still, pretty, but a likely candidate for eventual remounting.

1- Police Medal for Gallantry "K. P. Singh, Dy. S.P. (Offg.), U.P."

Not. No. 61-Pres./60 of 11 October 1960 (GoI 15 October 1960, p. 232):

"Shri Khyatendra Pal Singh, Deputy Superintendent of Police (Officiating), Agra, Uttar Pradesh.

"On receipt of information at about 13:00 hours on the 21st March 1960, that the gang of the notorious dacoit Balwanta, who was wanted in several cases of dacoity, murder and kidnapping in Uttar Pradesh was in the ravines of River Utangan near villages Behari and Chamarpura, Shri Khyatendra Pal Singh, Circle Officer, Fatehabad, District Agra, accompanied by the Station Officer of Police Station Fatehabad and the available force, including P.A.C., immediately proceeded to the ravines. The force was divided into four parties. Two of the parties lay in ambush on the likely routes of escape of the gang and the other two parties, one under the command of Sri Khyatendra Pal Singh himself, proceeded to close in from two sides and strike at the gang. At about 16:45 hours the dacoits noticed the police force advancing towards them and immediately opened fire on the party led by Sri Khyatendra Pal Singh. Undaunted by the firing and unmindful of his personal safety he continued his advance toward the dacoits. Balwanta, the leader of the gang, who had taken up a commanding position, continued to fire wildly at the police party. Sri Khyatendra Pal Singh at great personal risk came up close to the dacoits and succeeded in shooting down Balwanta. The rest of the gang managed to escape through the ravines. One DBBL 12 bore gun with a large quantity of ammunition was found with Balwanta.

"In the brief and successful encounter Sri Khyatendra Pal Singh exhibited exemplary courage, leadership and devotion to duty at great personal risk."

2- Police (Special Duty) Medal - JAMMU & KASHMIR

3- Police Independence Medal, 1950

The last two are -- of course and as usual -- unnamed.

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Talk abou"mounted as worn":

Captain Sir Parushuramrao Ramachandrarao ?Bhav Sahib? Patwardhan, K.C.I.E., Chief of Jamkhandi

1- 1914-15 Star - CAPT. SIR P.B. PATWARDHAN K.C.I.E. CHIEF OF JAMKHANDI.

2- British War Medal - CAPT. SIR P. B. PATWARDHAN. CH. OF JAMKHANDI

3- Victory Medal - CAPT. SIR P. RAMCHANDRARAV, CHIEF OF JAMKHANDI.

4- Durbar 1911 - unnamed

Sir Meherban PARASHURAM RAO RAMCHANDRA RAO I [DHAJISAHEB] PATWARDHAN 1897/1924, adopted from the Chinchanikar branch of the Patwardhan family, Chief of Jamkhandi, born 1883, succeeded 1897, installed 4th June 1903, K.C.I.E. [cr.1913], took active part in France in 1915, during WW1, in 1918 he was granted a 9-gun salute and made Hon. Captain in the British Army, he as a supervisor of Red Cross in the Mesopotamia, married 1stly 1900 Rama Bai Raste, daughter of Bala Sahib Raste, from the village of Vai, died 1st October 1907, married 2ndly 12th June 1913 Damle, daughter of Damle of Pune and had issue, 1 son and 1 daughter. He died 25th February 1924 (by being crushed under the feet of an angry elephant).

Obviously on original mounting. ;)

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1646 Sowar Jamal Khan, 1st Bombay Lancers

1- Queen's Sudan Medal, 1896-98 - Sowar Jamal Khan, 1st Bombay Lancers

Gaylor: "Their third spell of [operational] service abroad was a brief stay at Suakin on the Red Sea in 1896 when, as the 1st Bombay Lancers -- in consequence of the issue of the lance -- they formed part of a mixed cavalry brigade sent out from India." Service in Brigadier-General Egerton's force at Suakin, 30 March 1896 to 23 September 1896.

2- China War Medal 1900 - Sowar Jamal Khan, 1st Bombay Lancers

They were not regimentally present in China but small detachments were sent to reinforce other units.

3- Africa General Service Medal, 1902-1956, Edward VII issue - SOMALILAND 1902-04 - Sowar Jamal Khan, 1st Bombay Lancers

They were not regimentally present in Somaliland but small detachments were sent to reinforce other units.

4- Egypt: Khedive's Sudan Medal, 1896-1908 - Sowar Jamal Khan, 1st Bombay Lancers

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