Jerusalem: Israel today commemorated the
sacrifice of Indian soldiers in the liberation of Haifa, the
third-largest city in the country, during the First World War.
A ceremony to commemorate Indian soldiers was observed
at the Haifa Cemetery.
Indian Ambassador to Israel H E Navtej Sarna and
representatives from Haifa City Council, Israeli Ministry of
Defence, Haifa Historical Society, representative of the
Commonwealth Graves Commission, Defence Attaches from several
countries and a host of other dignitaries attended the
Sarna underlined the important role played by the
Indian soldiers during the First World War and thanked the
Haifa Historical Society for recognising India`s role in the
war, An Indian Embassy statement said.
Britain entered the war on 4 Aug 1914 by sending an
expeditionary force of four divisions to fight alongside the
French. At this time the only regular forces available to the
British were their own army and Indian Army. The Indian Army
fought in all the major theatres where Britain was engaged.
Indian Army troops were deployed throughout the war
for the defence of Suez Canal, operations in Gallipoli and for
various campaigns in Africa including that of Kilimanjaro. At
the Palestine and Syrian fronts they participated in the
battles of Jerusalem, Gaza, Megido, Sharon and Hafia.
During the battle for Haifa in September 1918, the
Indian troops exhibited exemplary cavalry skills and bravery
in a successful cavalry charge which finally culminated in the
liberation of Haifa, the statement said.
Captain Aman Singh Bahadur and Dafadar Jor Singh were
awarded the Indian Order of Merit (IOM) and Captain Anop Singh
and 2nd Lt Sagat Singh were awarded the Military Cross (MC) as
recognition for their bravery in the battle.
A two-member delegation of the Indian Army led by Col
MS Jodha, grandson of Captain Aman Singh Bahadur, has
especially come from India to attend this ceremony.