2nd Regiment of Madras Native Infantry

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Known as 2nd Regiment of Madras Native Infantry in the Madras Army
Known as 62nd Punjabis in the Indian Army

Chronology

  • 1759 formed as 3rd Battalion Coast Sepoys
  • 1769 became 2nd Carnatic Battalion
  • 1784 became 2nd Madras Battalion
  • 1796 became 1st Battalion, 2nd Madras Native Infantry
  • 1824 became 2nd Regiment of Madras Native Infantry
  • 1885 became 2nd Regiment of Madras Infantry
  • 1901 became 2nd Madras Infantry (Punjabis)
  • 1903 became 62nd Punjabis
  • 1922 became 1st/1st Punjab Regiment
  • 1947 allocated to Pakistan on Partition

British Library holdings

Regimental history: The First Punjabis - History of the First Punjab Regiment 1759 - 1956 by Major Mohammed Ibrahim Qureshi, published 1958[1]

Second World War

1st/1st Punjab Regiment's Middle Eastern period:

19th Indian Infantry Brigade – December 1940 to 21 November 1941 In December 1940 it moved from Landi Kotal to Delhi to join the 19th Indian Infantry Brigade. It was mobilized at the end of May 1941 and in June 1941 it moved to Dhond and then to Bombay where it left for Iraq on August 11th. The battalion arrived at Basra on August 18th 1941. It then moved to Mosul, where it arrived on August 28th. It left the brigade on November 21st, 1941 and headed for Mersa Matruh.

GHQ Middle East Force – 21 November 1941 to 4 December 1941 The battalion was in transit from Iraq to Mersa Matruh.

38th Indian Infantry Brigade – 4 December 1941 to 28 December 1941 On arrival at Mersa Matruh on December 4th, the battalion joined the 38th Indian Infantry Brigade. It took over the defences of the Charing Cross zone near Mersa Matruh under the brigade on December 6th, guarding aerodromes and supply depots. The battalion received orders on December 23rd that it was to be replaced in the 38th Brigade by 3/1st Punjab Regiment. It arrived at the railhead on December 26th and was ordered to Tobruk. It left the brigade on December 28th 1941 for Tobruk where it came under command of the 8th Army.

8th Army – 28 December 1941 to 3 January 1942 The battalion moved from Tobruk to join the 5th Indian Brigade.

5th Indian Infantry Brigade – 3 January 1942 to late February 1942 On January 3rd, 1942, it relieved the 3rd Battalion in the 5th Indian Infantry Brigade. It was located at Barce with the brigade by January 21st. The battalion then sent columns to patrol the El Abair-Carruba line until the 29th, when the columns were withdrawn. The 5th Brigade was then withdrawn over the northern road as the Germans attacked. It made Derna on February 2nd and Tmimi on the 3rd, where the battalion engaged the enemy for the first time. The brigade then withdrew to the Gazala Line, arriving at Acroma on February 4th. The brigade was relieved there during the third week of February and moved to Sollum then Sidi Barrani. Soon after arrival, the battalion was detached from the brigade to garrison the Giarabub Oasis.

8th Army – late February 1942 to April 1942 The battalion garrisoned the Giarabub oasis for two months.

161st Indian Infantry Brigade – April 1942 to 31 August 1945 Upon return to the Delta, the battalion moved to Khattaba and was ordered to convert to a motorized battalion. It joined the 161st Indian Motor Brigade at the same time. After the conversion, the battalion moved to El Alamein with the brigade. It dug defences for two weeks then went into battle with the brigade on July 19th. It was relieved in the front on July 26th and returned to the rear to rest until August 13th. It returned back to the front line at Ruweisat Ridge on August 14th and remained on the front line until November 7th, when the brigade was withdrawn to the rear. In mid-November, the brigade and battalion were sent to Iraq and the battalion was split up into detachments guarding the oil pipelines. When these duties were taken over by the Arab Legion in mid-February 1943, the battalion concentrated at Baghdad. It moved to Layafiya on March 3rdand then sailed from Iraq on May 26th, 1943 for India. [2]

External Links

References

  1. There are more details in this India List post
  2. WW2TalkForum post 1st Battalion 2nd Punjabi Regiment by ‘dryan 67’. There is a section about 1st/1st Punjab Regiment