Mutiny at Benares

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Mutiny at Benares
Part of Indian Mutiny
Date: 3 June 1857
Location: Benares
Presidency: Bengal
Co-ordinates: 25.282009°N 82.956336°E
Result: Suppression of mutiny
East India Company Rebel Sepoys
Brig Ponsonby
Lieut Col James Neill
10th Regiment of Foot (150 men)
1st Madras (European) Fusiliers
No 12 Field Artillery (30 men & 3 guns)
37th Bengal Native Infantry
Regiment of Sikh Infantry
13th Irregular Cavalry
Benares Map 1933


News of the Mutiny at Azimguhr reached Benares and it was decided that the 37th Bengal Native Infantry should be disarmed. Lieut Col James Neill had arrived from Madras with the 1st Madras European Regiment and insisted that this should be done at once. When called on parade some of the 37th came with arms and fired at their officers. The Sikh Infantry, thought to be loyal, also turned on the Europeans as did the Irregular Cavalry. Neill drove the rebels from their lines and withdrew into barracks for the night. Next day he consolidated his position and secured the treasury. The 37th fled from the cantonments during which about 100 were killed and 200 wounded. Further reinforcements ensured the safety of the Europeans and in subsequent days Neill carried out numerous hangings of suspected rebels as a deterrent.

Spelling Variants

Modern name: Varanasi
Variants: Benares


Entries in the Dictionary of Indian Biography 1906:
James Neill (1810-1857)

External Links

Indian Mutiny 1857-58 The British Empire website
Mutiny at Benares Google Books
Uprising at Benares Google Books
VCs won on 4 June Google Books
Sgt-Maj Peter Gill VC Wikipedia
Pte John Kirk VC Wikipedia
Sgt-Maj Matthew Rosamund VC Wikipedia