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Old 09-07-2009, 08:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Regiments of the Pakistan Army

Northern Light Infantry Regiment (NLI)



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Introduction

Gilgit Levies

In 1889 a force with the name of Gilgit Levies was raised under the command of Colonel Algernon Durand. The force, in 1891, fought the battle of Nilt against Hunza. In 1913 Major JC Bridges reorganized the force on company basis and the force was thus named as Gilgit scouts.

Gilgit Scouts

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When Gilgit scouts were raised, its strength was 582. The recruitment in the Gilgit scouts was based on the recommendation of Mirs and Rajas of the area. Close relatives of Mirs and Rajas were used to be given direct viceroy commission in corps of Gilgit scouts.

Northern Scouts

In 1947 Gilgit Scouts reverted to their original duties of internal security under Pakistani Political agent of Northern Areas. 582 men of Gilgit scouts were placed under the command of Major Muhammad Tufail Shaheed (Nishan-e-Haider). The remaining personnel of the expanded Corps were designated as the Corps of Northern Scouts in November 1949.


Capture of Kargil and Batalik and the Victor Motto

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Gilgit scouts were the first battalion in 1948 to capture Kargil and Batalik. Were then warded the motto of Victors.

Karakoram Scouts

The northern scouts were bifurcated on 1st January 1964, and Karakoram scouts were raised with its Head Quarters at Skardu.

Northern Light Infantry Regiment

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For centralization of administrative and operational control, the entire force was re-organized into 10 infantry units, 3 mountain batteries and a regimental centre with effect from 1 November 1975. Gilgit scouts were converted into 1st and 2nd Northern Light Infantry Battalion. After outstanding performance in the Kargil conflict of 1999, the entire Northern Light Infantry Regiment was given the status of regular infantry.



War Performance

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Liberation War 1947

Honorary Captain Muhammad Baber Khan took part in liberation war 1947/48. On partition, Gilgit agency was handed over to Maharaja of Kashmir by the British government. Brigadier Ghansara Singh arrived at Gilgit to take over the charge as Governor. Later on Major General H L Scott the chief of military staff of Kashmir also joined. The troops of Gilgit Scouts being 100% Muslim were in favour of accession to Pakistan. On 31 October 1947, in the afternoon, Honorary Captain Muhammad Baber Khan called the meeting of the Junior Commissioned Officers of Gilgit scouts in the Junior Commissioned Officers’ mess, where it was unanimously decided to over throw the dogra rule.

The governor surrendered on 1st November 1947. The Muslim company of 6 Jammu Kahmir infantry battalion coming to Gilgit from Bunji under command Captain Hassan Khan also joined the scouts. The scouts attacked and destroyed dogra check post and burnt Partab Bridge. The Sikh and dogra elements deserted and were later captured. 27000 sq miles were thus liberated from Dogra Raj. The force was then placed under command Major Muhammad Tufail Shaheed (Nishan-i-Haider), Honorary Captain Muhammad Baber Khan of 1st Northern Light Infantry Regiment who played the most vital role in the war of liberation (from Dogra Raj) in 1947.

Fighting at the Highest Battle Field in the World

Siachen border is the world’s highest battlefield. 1 Northern Light Infantry Battalion has the unique honour of being the first unit to defend Gyong and Gyari sectors. Battalion was ordered to move to Siachen in the first week of April 1984 from Gilgit under command Lieutenant Colonel Shuja Ullah Tarrar Tamgha-i- Basalat. The unit was involved in a successful combat with weather, terrain and the real enemy. 1 Northern Light Infantry Battalion did dumping of ammonition and ration and complete defence construction.

Action in Azad Kashmir

1st Northern Light Infantry Regiment remained involved in acts of gallantry while its tenure in Azad Kashmir. A number of successful fire raids were carried out on enemy.


Honours and Awards


Gilgit scouts and Northern scouts


War of Liberation and 1965 War

* Sitara-i-Jurat - 5
* Tamgha-i-Jurat - 8
* Imtiazi Sanad - 25
* C-In-C’s Commendation Card - 2




1971 War – Northern Scouts

* Sitara-i-Jurat - 2
* Tamgha-i-Jurat - 2
* Imtiazi Sanad - 1




Karakoram Scouts

1965 War

* Sitara-i-Jurat - 1
* Tamgha-i-Jurat - 1
* Tamgha-i-Basalat - 2
* Imtiazi Sanad - 4



1971 War

* Sitara-i-Jurat - 2
* Tamgha-i-Jurat - 8
* Imtiazi Sanad - 2



Nishan i Haider and Kargil war


Captain Karnal Sher Khan (1970–1999)


Pakistan Army's official statement is as follows;

"Captain Karnal Sher Khan emerged as the symbol of mettle and courage during the Kargil conflict on the Line of Control (LoC). He set personal examples of bravery and inflicted heavy losses on the enemy. He defended the five strategic posts, which he established with his Jawan's at the height of some 17,000 feet at Gultary, and repulsed many Indian attacks.After many abortive attempts, the enemy on July 5 ringed the post of Capt. Sher Khan with the help of two battalion and unleashed heavy Mortar firing and managed to capture some part of the post. Despite facing all odds, he lead a counter-attack and re- captured the lost parts.But during the course he was hit by the machine-gun fire and embraced Shahadat or martyrdom at the same post. He is the first officer from the NWFP province to be awarded with Nishan-e-Haider."



Lalak Jan Shaahed
(1967 – 7 July 1999)

"He emerged as the symbol of mettle and courage during the Kargil conflict on the Line of Control (LoC). He set personal examples of bravery and inflicted heavy losses on the enemy. He defended the strategic posts. During the conflict he embraced Shahadat or martyrdom. He is the first Army man from the Northern Areas now Gilgit Baltistan to be awarded with Nishan-e-Haider."


http://www.pakistanarmy.gov.pk/AWPRe...Id=162&rnd=462
http://www.ispr.gov.pk/front/main.as...release&id=318
http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...an/rgt-nli.htm

Source: Courtesy of References/sources and "Righteous_fire" from Def.Pk
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Old 09-07-2009, 10:21 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Regiments of the Pakistan Army

Thank you of the lovely pictures A1Kaid esp of Mushy........
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Old 09-08-2009, 06:37 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Regiments of the Pakistan Army

....Continued from Post# 3

More on Baloch Regiment from Pakistan Arny's http://www.pakistanarmy.gov.pk/AWPRe...Id=157&rnd=457 Website

Baloch Regiment


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History


The present Baloch Regiment is the result of an amalgamation of three very distinguished Infantry Regiments of Old Indian Army i.e., 8 Punjab, 10 Baloch and Bahawalpur Regiments. The amalgamation took place in 1956. Brief histories of each group are mentioned in the succeeding paras.




Old 8 Punjab Regiment
The history of the Regiment dates back to the year 1798 when “McLeod Ki Paltan”, the present one of the battalion of the Baloch Regiment, was raised at Masulipattam. After some time, it came to be known as 89th Punjabis. Later 90th, 92nd and 93rd Punjabis (presently Baloch Battalions of the Regiment) were also raised and the group got the name of “Madras Native Infantry”, as these battalions were raised at Madras.


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In 1903, the original names of the battalions i.e. 89th, 90th, 91st, 92nd and 93rd Punjabis were restored by Lord Kitchner on re-organization of the Indian Army. In 1922, on adoption of the group system in Indian Army, these battalions were grouped as 8 Punjab Regiment with its Training Centre at Lahore. This Centre was designated as 10/8 Punjab Regiment and the battalions were renamed as 1/8 Punjab (1 Baloch) Regiment, 2/8 Punjab (2 Baloch Regiment) etc. Some battalions were raised during World War I and II but were disbanded after the Wars and the Centre was left with only eight battalions. In 1943, the Centre was renamed as 8 Punjab Regimental Centre. The battalions of 8 Punjab Regiment served with distinction at many places and fought many battles during World Wars I and II, winning many gallantry awards and battle honours.

Old 10 Baloch Regiment
The first battalion of the old 10 Baloch Regiment, presently one of the Baloch Regiment, was raised in 1820 as 2nd battalion of the 12 Regiment of the Bombay Infantry. In 1825, another battalion was raised as 2nd extra Battalion of the Bombay Native Infantry. These battalions were renamed as 24th and 26th (6 and 7 Baloch) Regiment in 1826. They fought with great distinction during World War I and became famous as Bombay Toughs. The 3rd and 4th battalions of the Baloch Regiment were raised in 1844 and 1846 respectively (presently two Baloch Regiments). In addition Jacob's men brought own rifles and equipment raised 5th battalion. This battalion was known as Jacob's Rifles (presently one of the Baloch Regiment).

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The group of battalions was known as Bombay Infantry till 1891, after which these were renamed as Balochistan Light Infantry. For sometimes, only the Balochis were taken into these battalions. In 1905, these battalions were re-organized as 124th, 126th, 127th, 129th and 130th Rifle (Presently Baloch Regiments).

During World War I, 124th became famous as "War Babies", while fighting in Palestine in 1918. It was renamed as 10th battalion and stationed at Karachi as a training battalion in 1921. The battalions were renamed as 1/10, 2/10,3/10 and 4/10 Baloch etc. The 1st, 3rd and 5th battalions were the Royal Battalions. Their attire, however, was not royal blue but green and cherry, and the Regiment adopted these colours. In 1923, the training Centre shifted to Rajkot, Kathiawar but was again brought to Karachi in 1929. The group expanded during World War II, and its units fought with distinction in many theatres of War, winning awards and contributing to the galaxy of the Battle honours.


The Old Bahawalpur Regiment
His Highness Nawab Muhammad Bahawal Khan Abbasi IV raised the first Bahawalpur Battalion in 1826. Another battalion, the 2nd Bahawalpur, was raised in 1827. These battaions became part of Indian State Forces later and came to be known as 1st and 2nd Bahawalpur Light Infantry respectively. Both these battalions fought with distinction during the first and second Kabul Wars in 1837 and 1879 and later during the both World Wars. During World War II, two more battalions were raised. Thus the Bahawalpur Regiment had four battalions at the time of Independence. The 1st and 2nd Bahawalpur Battalions were effective in subduing Mulraj during 1848/49, which helped to restore Multan to Muslims influence later on.

As a sequel to the general reorganization of the Pakistan Army, the 6th (Bahawalpur) Division was disbanded during 1955 and the four battalions of the Bahawalpur Regiment were amalgamated with the Baluch (present Baloch) Regiment in April 1956.


After Independence
The Baloch Regiment played very significant role at the time of independence in 1947. A number of its battalions became famous for escorting refugee families safely to Pakistan. In Kashmir War of 1948 one of the Battalions of the Regiment captured the dominating height called "PANDU Feature" and evicted the Indians from there.

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Quaid-e-Azam Inspecting The First Honour Guard Of The 7/10th Baloch Regiment At Karachi - August 1947


One of the battalions has the unique honour of presenting the first GUARD OF HONOUR to Quaid-i-Azam, Muhammad Ali Jinnah immediately after Independence and in return being awarded the First Pakistani Flag by the Quaid-i-Azam personally.

At the time of Independence, the Centre of 10 Baloch Regiment was located at Karachi. It had nine battalions. Immediately after Independence, the Centre was moved to Quetta where it remained till April 1956, when it was shifted to Multan. On 7th May 1956, the present Baloch Regiment came into being by the amalgamation of 8th Punjab Regiment and Bahawalpur Regiment into the Baloch Regiment at Multan and this day is called the BALOCH DAY in the history. 8th Punjab Centre and Bahawalpur Centre were closed at Quetta and Dera Nawab Sahib respectively and their records were brought to Multan. The 8th Punjab Regiment added eight battalions.

The Bloch Centre moved to Abbottabad in the last week of December 1957 and there it has remained ever since. The Regimental Centre was last to arrive in Abbottabad. Today, it has added into the glories of Abbottabad. The Centre has magnificent buildings, which depict its history and culture. The Balochis, as painted by R D Mackenzie, a British artist of the late Nineteenth Century, are fierce looking, stern featured, eagle eyed, turbaned horsemen with long hair and flowing beards, all armed with guns.


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Badge of Baloch Regiment




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Balochi Yalghar


State of Central Balochistan emerged during 1404 under Khan of Kalat. The state had no organized Army; instead the administrators of Khan used to collect and enrol volunteers whenever required, known as 'Lashkars'. The picture reflects the charge of one of such Lashkars.



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The Badge Of Old 8 Punjab






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Baloch Regimental Band In The Field






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Regimental Badges






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Regimental Buttons 124th Balochistan Infantry




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Col R.E Fellows Commandant And 2nd in Comd Major Muhammad Sadiq
With Quaid-e-Azam at Sibi May 1948





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The Prime Minister Of Pakistan Quaid-E-Millat Khan Liaqat Ali Khan Inspecting The Guard Of Honour Presented To Him By 11 Baluch Near Jaggu Head-Works In 1949
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Old 09-08-2009, 08:07 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Regiments of the Pakistan Army

....Continued from Post# 10

More on Sindh Regiment from Pakistan Arny's Website http://www.pakistanarmy.gov.pk/AWPRe...t.aspx?pId=160


Sindh Regiment



History

Sindh Regiment is most recent infantarian addition in the Pakistan Army. On 1st July 1980, the independent training Battalion of Baloch Regiment at Sukkur was re-designated and it started functioning as Sindh Regiment Centre with raising of five training companies. Sindh Regimental Centre moved from Sukkur to Petaro which is approximately 35 KM from Hyderabad Cantonment. It shifted to its present location in October 1981 and the centre has come up as one of most modern complexes in the Army. The Sindh Regiment Centre was raised initially with eleven Punjab and ten Baloch Battalions Eight additional battalions were raised in the period from 1988 to 1999. Today the Regiment comprises total of 29 battalions. 40 Horse (Sindh) is also affiliated with Sindh Regiment. The Regiment is proud of the Chiva Rous History and has earned so for one NISHAN-E-HAIDER, 6 SITAR-E-JURRAT, 6 SITARA-E-BASALAT, 12 TAMGHA-E-JURRAT and 28 TAMGHA-E-BASALAT.


Traditional House


Sindh Regimental Centre has a unique monument of Indus civilization. It was an indigenous development that arose out of the evolution of developed village cultures in a favourable environment “A GREAT TRADITION” marked both urban and rural element evolved out of Hyderabad’s little communities and characteristic of Indus valley. In other words civilization of Indus in a minimum sense of term is the art of living in town with all that the condition implies in respect of social skill and discipline. This traditional house is also specimen of one of the clans of Sindh, who even today decorate their houses with high profile of their ethnological skills. Models of all are preserved in a Monument established in Sindh Regimental Centre.

Catapult


Model of special Catapult named “Wee Bridge” belong to the Commander Khalifah. It was handled by the force of 500 men Engineer “JAUBAT SALMI” shoot the first missile with this machine and below off the flag-pole.

Battle of Debal

In eighth century the Arabian Sea was dominated by pirates. An Arab vessel which was carrying women and children were looted by those pirates. A young girl wrote a message to Hajaj Bin Yousaf for this Brutality. Hijaj Bin Yousaf nominated Muhammad Bin Qasim (The youngest general in the history) to redress. Muhammad Bin Qasim on 711 A.D. entered in Sindh and captured Debal Fort, presently known as Bambhore. It was most important fort because of trade communication and security. Muhammad Bin Qasim with his 12000 Men, 3000 Horses and 3000 Camels attached amphibiously. The fort of Debal that was the center of gravity professionalism and fighting skill of Muslims resulted in the capture of Area up to Multan. The ardent Muslim expedition not only saved Arab traders from brutal clutches of robbers in sea but also opened gateway to Islam in subcontinent (Indo-Pak). Bambhore Debal is located 44 KM from Thatta on National High Way.

Ghulam Shah Kalhora founded the Capital of Sindh at the Hyderabad in 1758.
The Hyderabad Fort and city of Hyderabad was one of the strongest places in Sindh. The city occupies the site of ancient city of Nerima Kot. The foundations of both were laid in 1758 by Ghulam Shah Kalhora and in 1789 by Mir Fateh Ali Khan Talpur. The successor continued status of Hyderabad as a capital. Hyderabad was the chosen residence of the Ameers and their families upto 1843. After that fort was held by the European officers of the Garrison.


Rani Kot Fort

Rani Kot fort is situated approximately 75 miles North West of Hyderabad and 18 miles west of Railway Station Sann on the Kotri Larkana line. A fort holding gigantic fortification walls runs down the contours on bare hills. The fort saved the life of its inhabitants, whenever they faced the invaders. A small river runs in the middle. The fort are three fortresses within the fort area are:-

* Miri – Kot
* Sher_ Garh
* Mohan –Kot

From time to time construction work was carried out on the fort. In 1812 A.D. Nawab Wali Muhammad Khan Leghari Prime Minster of Sindh and Talpur Government also carried out construction of wall. Mir Sher Khan extended wall in 1st quarter of 19th century A.D. to resist against British forces. Fort was also meant to serve as a strong hold and place of refuge for the Mirs in case they could not contain the march of British.

Umer Kot Fort

Fort was founded by Umer the king of the Soomra-Dynasty-(1405-A.D to 1439). The town had a conspicuous fort which was perhaps built in 13 century A.D. Each side of the fort was about 500 feet long, 40 feet height and the wall were so wide that at one time two horse riders could pass easily over it. It was connected with four bastions at each corner and had to stone bastions at the main gate. These stone bastions were brought from Jodpur station. In the center of the fort there was a watch tower created during the period of Kalhora with regime seven heavy cannons displayed on the raised ground near watch - tower. Humayun and his army once moving to Persia stayed in the town. It was the possession of Talpur rulers when British Army occupied Sindh in 1843 AD.

Kot Diji (Fort)


Mir Shorab Khan Talpur built the Fort several hundred years back. Kot Diji fort was a strong hold of a member of Talpur ruling families spreading over an area of about 3 KM. It is situated 15 miles south of Khairpur town and north of Kot Diji on National high way. The “S” shaped lies prominent on rang of low line. Stone hills proceeding in a direction from southeast to northwest and reaching the Indus at Rohri. It was built of burnt bricks. Whereas at intervals Rohri stone was used. Some cannons of those days have been removed and placed at important building at main thoroughfare of Khairpur. Sir Charles Napier and his army encamped during their advance to destroy the fort of Imam Garh located on the border of Sindh Jaisalmir in the desert area.
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Old 09-08-2009, 08:32 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Regiments of the Pakistan Army

....Continued from Post# 4

More on FF Regiment from Pakistan Arny's Website http://www.pakistanarmy.gov.pk/AWPRe...Id=158&rnd=458

Frontier Force Regiment

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Introduction



The PIFFERs are a tight knit brotherhood of soldiers, bound by a distinguished military history, a long tradition of soldiering and a strong foundation of regimental traditions. They are disciplined, hard fellows, full of natural military instincts. They are a special breed, purified in the inferno of objective realities, demanding courage, loyalty and steadfastness. During 59 years of Pakistan’s history, not a battle has been fought without PIFFERs. Frontier Force Regiments have invariably contributed to the success of every major undertaking: from Chamb-Jaurian to Hilli, from Dinajpur to Sulemanki, from Siachen to Rann of Kutch; Frontier Force Regiments have always been in the eye of the storm. From the turmoil in the wake of Partition to the floods and earthquakes in the most inhospitable terrain, Frontier Force Regiments have assisted the civil administration in an unflinching manner.
In over one hundred and fifty years of its existence, the Frontier Force has kept pace with the changing times. It has developed to meet the requirements of the Army and the Nation, and to absorb various fundamental changes in the battlefield environment, encompassing induction of new weapons and equipment.


History


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The significant conquests of the British in North-Western India, following the conquest of Sindh, were to include the Punjab, after taking on the Sikhs and finally the North-West Frontier of India facing Afghanistan __ the British part in the Great Game being played against the Russian Empire, that was rapidly expanding southwards through Central Asia. When the British in India set out to conquer Punjab under the Sikhs, and defeated the Khalsa Army at Sobraon in 1846, they faced two problems: firstly, they inherited the responsibility of governing and policing the newly won area and its prickly North-West frontier inhabited by Pathans, whom the British learned to treat with great respect. Secondly, they had to tackle a large number of Sikh and Muslim ex-soldiers, lawlessly roaming the land after the Khalsa Army was disbanded. The British killed two birds with one stone by raising a military force for the purpose, by recruiting those very ex-soldiers. This clever move brought into existence the nucleus of the force that has since then evolved into and thrives even today as the FRONTIER FORCE.

The Earliest Frontier Force Units

The first Frontier Force unit ever was the Scinde (Sindh) Camel Corps raised at Karachi in 1843 by Lieutenant Robert FitzGerald, on the orders of Sir Charles Napier after the British conquest of Sindh. Its purpose was to pacify the lawless tribes in interior Sindh. The next was the Corps of Guides raised by Lieutenant Harry Lumsden at Peshawar in 1846, to meet the requirement of guides and interpreters while operating among the tribes of the North-West Frontier. The birth of these two corps’ actually preceded the raising of the Frontier Force proper, which they subsequently joined.

Raising of the Frontier Force

The Frontier Brigade was raised in 1846 by order of Sir Henry Lawrence, Agent to the Governor-General in the Frontier. The Frontier Brigade, consisted of the newly raised 1st to 4th Sikh Infantry. In 1847 the title “Frontier Brigade” was dropped and the units were re-designated 1st, 2nd (or Hill Corps), 3rd and 4th Regiments of Sikh Local Infantry. The successful employment of this force so encouraged Lawrence that the raising of another Trans Frontier Brigade in addition to the one mentioned above, was authorized on 18 May 1849 __ the official birthday of the Frontier Force.



This force was independent of the regular army, and belonged to the Punjab Government. This irregular background was distinguished by several elements as no parade ground drill, swift tactical movement in small groups, initiative and unconcern toward routine orders, rules and regulations governing regiments of the line. These elements explain the elan and flair for which the Frontier Force is known till this day.

Service on the North-West Frontier
In 1851 the Trans-Frontier Brigade was redesignated the Punjab Irregular Force, or PIF. This acronym forms the first three letters of the name by which all members of the Frontier Force are so proudly known the world over “PIFFERs”. (It would be pertinent to mention that the nickname PIFFER is derived from PIF, while “FER” is added as a linguistic requirement, as Dig becomes Digger. The acronym is not derived, as popularly thought, from PIFF or “Punjab Irregular Frontier Force”. The force has never been known by this name). The same year the Corps of Guides (consisting of Cavalry and Infantry) and four Sikh Infantry units of the Frontier Brigade joined the PIF, along with one garrison artillery battery (raised as No 4 Garrison Company in 1851, converted into the Frontier Garrison Artillery and disbanded in 1925), Peshawar Horse Light Field Battery (raised 1849, became 3rd Peshawar Mountain Battery Hazara Mountain Battery (raised 1851, later 4th Hazara Mountain Battery, went to India at Partition in 1947), and the former Scinde Camel Corps, re-designated the 6th Punjab Infantry.

The composition of the Punjab Irregular Force was Punjabi Musalmans, Pathans, Sikhs, Dogras and Gurkhas __ the best soldiers, the Subcontinent had to offer.

Interestingly, the class composition was maintained on a company basis. Although the composition changed from time to time and even varied between units, a PIFFER unit would typically consist a company each of Punjabi Musalmans, Pathans, Sikhs and Dogras. This force was deployed all along the North-West Frontier, maintaining constant vigilance on various marches, and enforcing law and order.

Overseas Service

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In 1852, the 4th Sikh was the first PIFFER unit to go overseas and fight a successful campaign in Burma. Eight PIFFER units participated in the so-called Indian Mutiny in 1857, winning three Victoria Crosses (British gallantry award, equivalent of the Nishan-e-Haider). The Guides wear red piping on the collar, and 9 Frontier Force blue piping on collar and cuffs, distinctions won during 1857. In 1858, Gurkha troops from PIFFER units were formed into the Hazara Gurkha Battalion later re-designated 5th Gurkhas in 1861, transferred to India at Partition in 1947.

The Punjab Frontier Force

In 1865 the force was renamed the Punjab Frontier Force (PFF). It is interesting that Sir Robert Sandeman was escorted into Balochistan by 4th Sikhs and troops of 1st Punjab Cavalry. This escort formed the first ever garrison to be stationed at Quetta. In 1886, the PFF was placed under the Commander-in-Chief,India, having joined the regular army, a major transition for the PIFFERs. The same year 2/5th Gurkha Rifles was raised, but later absorbed into the 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles.

Till the period leading up to World War I, several PIFFER units remained busy on the North-West Frontier, while some PIFFER units also went overseas to fight. These included seventeen units in the Second Afghan War 1878-80, the Guides at the defence of the Residency at Kabul, Lord Roberts famous march from Kabul to Kandahar, 1880, the Boxer Rebellion in China, 1900 and Somaliland, 1902-04. The force won twelve VCs in this period. In 1899, the 42nd Gurkha Rifles (Frontier Force) was raised, but disbanded in 1903. In 1903 Lord Kitchener abolished the three Presidency armies (Bengal, Madras and Bombay) and in the bargain PIFFER units were re-numbered. The new numbers, each with Frontier Force in brackets afterwards, were 51st to 54th Sikhs, 55th to 59th Rifles, 5th Gurkhas, the Corps of Guides, 21st to 24th Mountain Batteries, the Garrison Artillery, 21st to 23rd and 25th Punjab Cavalry. It was based on these numbers that the oldest PIFFER units earned affectionate nicknames that live to this day __ Ekwanja, Tunpur Bawanja, Royal Tirwanja, Churwanja, Chattak Pachwanja, Bhaiband Chhewanja, Susti Satwanja, Dasturi Athwanja and Garbar Unath.

World War - I


Once the British Indian Army was called upon to contribute to the war effort in 1914, PIFFER units fought in most major campaigns, including France and Belgium, Mesopotamia, Palestine and East Africa, winning three VCs. The Kohat Mountain Battery, 59th Scinde Rifles and 5th Gurkhas were awarded the title of "Royal" for services during the war, an honour bestowed upon very few Indian units, distinguished by a red lanyard. Lord Kitchener was so impressed by the fighting qualities of the PIFFERs that he directed that a purely PIFFER brigade be raised. Accordingly, 28 (Frontier Force) Brigade was raised (consisting of 51st and 53rd Sikhs, 56th Rifles and 5th Gurkhas), of which 1/5th Gurkhas (Frontier Force) fought well at Gallipoli. 1st Kohat Mountain Battery (Frontier Force) was the first to land their guns ashore in support of the Australians. A number of battalions were raised during the war including the 2nd Battalion Guides Infantry (raised in 1917, converted into 10/12th Frontier Force Regiment in 1922), 3rd Battalion Guides Infantry (raised in 1917, disbanded in 1921) and 2/56th Rifles (raised in 1917, redesignated 10/13th Frontier Force Rifles in 1922). 10/12th Frontier Force Regiment and 10/13th Frontier Force Rifles were formed into regimental training centres in 1922.

Inter World War Period

After World War I, the Indian Army saw a major re-organisation including regrouping, amalgamation, establishment of training centres for each regiment and units as part of the Indian Territorial Force and posting of native Indians as King’s Commissioned Officers.

The PIFFERs remained committed to their traditional calling, manning the North West Frontier of the British Empire, where, in 1935, the 53rd Sikhs were granted the title of "Royal" for services rendered, and permitted to wear a blue lanyard in recognition. One VC was added to the PIFFER list of awards in this period. The first batch of Indian officers commissioned from the Military Academy at Dehra Dun, included the future General Muhammad Musa, Commander-in-Chief Pakistan Army.

World War - II


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With the entry of Japan in World War II, the Indian Dominion was called upon to provide troops. As in World War I, the PIFFER units fought in all theatres except North Western Europe, facing all three Axis powers that included Germans, Italians and Japanese. This included a large number of war-raised units. 11 PAVO Cavalry (Frontier Force) have the unique distinction of being the only armoured regiment to have fought against forces of the three Axis powers. 4/12th Frontier Force Regiment was the only unit in the British Indian Army to have served in a formation of another dominion, the 6th South African Division in Italy, who were reluctant to let them go when required by their parent formation. It would take volumes to narrate the exploits of PIFFER units during the War butit would be suffice to say that seven VCs were added to their proud record. The battle honours won by PIFFER units during World War II are read like a history of the war itself. It is interesting to mention here, that the 11/13 Territorial Battalion, later renamed 15th/13th Frontier Force Rifles, volunteered collectively in 1943, to join the Royal Indian Navy (R.I.N), as its landing Craft Wing, the first ever naval PIFFERs.

Partition


With the partition of India in 1947, the British Indian Army was also divided. Pakistan received the bulk of PIFFERs, except two mountain batteries (Derajat and Hazara) and the 5th Gurkha Rifles (Frontier Force). Sikh and Dogra companies were swapped for Punjabi Musalman and Pathan ones from units that went to India. PIFFER units immediately undertook refugee escort duties and protection of civilians, both Muslim and non-Muslim. As part of Operation CURZON, PIFFER units finally pulled out from their permanent stations on the North-West Frontier their home of a hundred years. During 1947, 8/12 Frontier Force Rifles located at Dacca, had the proud honour and rare distinction of being the first Pakistani battalion to salute Pakistan’s flag, when it was first hoisted at the new seat of Government of East Pakistan. 9/12th, 14/12th Frontier Force Regiment, 14/13th and 15/13th Frontier Force Rifles were re-raised in 1948.



After Independence War Performance

Kashmir War 1948

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PIFFER officers volunteered to join Pathan lashkars fighting in Kashmir, as they came under pressure from the Indian Army. As the Pakistan Army formally entered the Kashmir War in 1948 to meet the Indian threat, PIFFER units including cavalry and artillery came forward to join the fight. These included 2nd, 3rd Royal and 5th (Guides) Battalions of the 12th Frontier Force Regiment, 1st , 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th (Royal) Battalion of the 13th Frontier Force Rifles, PAVO Cavalry Frontier Force, 2nd Royal Kohat and 3rd Peshawar Mountain Batteries Frontier Force. While two senior PIFFER officers won HJ, other officers and men were awarded nine SJs, seventeen TJs and twenty six Imtiazi Sanads, and units received the coveted battle honour of KASHMIR 1948.

Post Kashmir War

The period from Partition till the 1965 War was characterised by reorganisation and consolidation within the Pakistan Army. 5/13th Frontier Force Rifles were the first unit in the Pakistan Army to become a motorised battalion in 1948. PIFFER units were stationed in East Pakistan to take part in flood relief and anti-smuggling duties.


The Pathan Regiment
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In 1949 the Pathan Regiment was formed, with a nucleus regimental centre, with personnel provided by the 12th Frontier Force Regiment and 13th Frontier Force Rifles at Kohat. Its battalions were 1st Pathan formed from re-raised 14/12th Frontier Force Regiment, 2nd Pathan formed from re-raised 14/13th Frontier Force Rifles, and 3rd Pathan formed from re-raised 15/13th Frontier Force Rifles. (The original 14/12th had been disbanded in 1946, the original 14/13th had been reconstituted as 1/13th Frontier Force Rifles and original 15/13th had formed the Landing Craft Wing of the Royal Indian Navy as already mentioned).

Amalgamation (1956) Till 1965 War

Pakistan became a republic in 1956. This year is an important landmark in PIFFER history.

It saw the PIFFERs transforming into the structure that we retain till this day, shedding our colonial symbols and becoming a single entity. Royal titles and badges were dropped and the 12th Frontier Force Regiment, 13th Frontier Force Rifles and the Pathan Regiment were amalgamated into a single Frontier Force Regiment with common dress and insignia.

At this time, the PIFFERs consisted of 1st to 15th Battalions of the Frontier Force Regiment, the Guides Cavalry Frontier Force, 11th (PAVO) Cavalry Frontier Force, 12th Sam Browne’s Cavalry Frontier Force and 1st Mountain Regiment Frontier Force (consisting of Kohat and Peshawar Mountain Batteries,). A year earlier, in 1955, the Pakistan Armoured Corps Centre was delinked from its Sam Browne Cavalry identity and 12 Cavalry was re-raised as a combat unit, receiving a PIFFER squadron each from the Guides Cavalry (Frontier Force) and 11 Cavalry (Frontier Force).


1 and 7 Frontier Force were converted to motorised battalions during the period 1956-1957. Similarly, a PIFFER unit was selected to become the Army’s first support (later reconnaissance and support) unit.




3 Frontier Force and elements of 9 Frontier Force and 15 Frontier Force undertook operations in DIR-BAJAUR in 1960 to establish the writ of the Government and keep out a 25,000 strong Afghan Lashkar. This successful operation was commemorated by a clasp “DIR BAJAUR” to Tamgha-e-Difa. During the period 1961 to 1964 1, 7 and 10 Frontier Force, then motorised battalions, became the first armoured infantry battalions in the Pakistan Army. When the Indian Army "edged forward" in the Rann of Kutch in March 1965, the Pakistan Army reacted with speed, re-capturing Sardar Post and capturing Biar Bet. 12 Cavalry (Frontier Force), Guides Infantry (2 Frontier Force) and 8 Frontier Force distinguished themselves in this successful action, after which the Indian Prime Minister offered a parting remark, "Next time we will attack at a place of our own choosing" a prelude to the 1965 War.

1965 War



The Indians formally began the war with an attack at Wagah opposite Lahore on 6 September. PIFFER armoured, artillery and infantry units took part in all sectors - Kashmir (including Chhamb), Sialkot, Lahore, Kasur-Khem Karan and Rajasthan. All three PIFFER armoured regiments gave a good account of themselves in the Sialkot Sector while 11 Cavalry saw action in Chhamb as well. 1 SP Field Regiment (incorporating the two PIFFER batteries) provided fire support aggressively in the Battle of Chawinda, losing their gallant CO in the process. The unit was, subsequently, awarded red piping on the collars to recognise their performance. 6 and 12 Frontier Force took part in the advance on Chhamb-Jaurian-Akhnur Axis. 6 Frontier Force also saw action in the Sialkot Sector. Guides Cavalry Frontier Force, 11 Cavalry Frontier Force, 3, 4, 9, 13 and 14 Frontier Force fought in the Sialkot Sector. 7, 11, 15 and 16 FF saw action while defending Lahore. 1, 2, 5 and 10 FF took part in advance to and capture of Khem Karan in the Kasur Sector. 8 and 18 FF carried out successful attacks and captured a large chunk of territory in the Rajasthan Sector. 23 FF re-captured Sadhewala Post in the Rajasthan Sector from the Indians, two months after the war ended. PIFFERs adorned themselves with HJs for two senior PIFFERs, twenty-eight SJs, thirty-one TJs and thirty-nine Imtiazi Sanads.

1971 War

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During the war in 1971, both in the eastern and western theatres, PIFFER units played their role in a manner that will continue to feature prominently in the annals of history. 31 FF was raised in November 1971, as Pakistan’s first national service battalion. With a PIFFER commanding officer, some PIFFER officers, Junior Commissioned Officers and Other Ranks, it trained 1049 national service-men under the National Service Scheme. The unit remained active/deployed in Lahore and Khem Karan Sectors during the war, and was re-categorised as a regular infantry battalion in May 1972. 39 to 44 FF and 231 (Independent) Company FF were raised during the period November 1971 to March 1972. In East Pakistan, 4 FF defended Hilli gallantly against heavy odds till it was ordered out. Among other awards, Major Muhammad Akram Shaheed was awarded Nishan-e-Haider (NH). Other units that operated in East Pakistan were 12, 13, 15, 22, 24, 25, 26, 30 and 38 FF. Sadly these gallant units had to endure captivity once Dacca fell in December 1971.


In the western theatre too, the PIFFER units stood their ground. 11 Cavalry (FF) saw some heavy fighting in the Chhamb Sector. The Kashmir Sector saw 2 FF (Guides), 3, 5, 17 and 33 FF in various actions. In the Sialkot Sector, 19, 23, 27, 29, 35 and 37 FF took part in the fighting. 35 FF's immortal attack won their CO, Lieutenant Colonel Akram Raja a posthumous HJ, with the highest compliment a gallant soldier could receive ___ a citation written by the opposing lndian commander, Lieutenant Colonel V P Airy of the 3rd Grenadier Guards. 8 and 18 FF fought on the Lahore Front. In the Sulemanki Sector, 6 FF gained fame during its capture of Gurmukh Khera Bridge on Sabuna Drain. Major Shabbir Sharif Shaheed, already an SJ from the 1965 War, was awarded NH. 36 FF also fought well in the same sector. 20, 21 and 39 FF saw worthwhile action in the Desert Sector.

The FF Centre
The Frontier Force Regimental Centre, nestled in the Abbottabad hills, is the home of all PIFFERs. Previously Kohat, the largest and most popular PIFFER station, became the home of PIFFERs after World War I, to include PIFFER Mess, PIFFER Memorial and PIFFER Church. The two original training battalions mentioned under the 1922 reorganisation, moved to Sialkot (12th FF Regiment) and Abbottabad (13th FF Rifles). Both centres did a magnificent job in sending well trained recruits to various theatres during World War II. The training battalions were expanded into full-fledged centres as the war progressed. At Partition, the Frontier Force Regiment Training Centre moved from Sialkot to Abbottabad. Once the three PIFFER groups were amalgamated in 1956, the Pathan Regimental Centre at Kohat was also absorbed at Abbottabad. Since then, the Centre trains recruits and acts as the spiritual home of all PIFFERs. The PIFFER Museum, inaugurated in 1981, is attractively laid out and well stocked with a rich and impressive collection of medals, weapons, dress and insignia, portraits and flags, history books, albums, paintings, cutlery and musical instruments.



The Punjab Frontier Force Association (UK)
Partition resulted in a large number of British PIFFERs returning to the UK. The strong PIFFER bonds and nostalgic memories of many years of war and peace spent in PIFFER units, led to the formation of a formal PFF Association in the UK, in 1948. The association had first been mentioned by General Rob Lockhart in 1945. The Association actively maintained contact among the British members and with Pakistani PIFFER officers, the mother Regiment and units in Pakistan (and those in India). Its activities included reunion dinners, visits to Pakistan and India, issue of a journal and a host of other activities. With four issues of the journal a year in the earlier years (made possible by a large membership) dwindling numbers and lengthening obituaries led to issue of a single number annually, in later years. The final issue was published in November 2000. The same year, surviving members led the Association to vote itself into oblivion. A ‘Residual Committee’ remains, to deal with the PIFFER affairs in the UK, and maintain contact with the PIFFER Centre at Abbottabad. For half a century, the association did sterling work to keep the old bonds alive.

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Old 03-31-2012, 08:39 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Nice article. I like your post. Nice adventure & great pics, thanks! Also enjoyed the equipment evaluation..
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