The India Gate (formerly the All-Indian War Memorial) is a war memorial located across the Radipas at the eastern end of New Delhi’s “Ritual Axis” and was formerly known as the Kingsway. This is a monument to the 84,000 British Indian Army soldiers who died in France, Flanders, Mesopotamia, Persia, East Africa, Galipoli, and elsewhere in the Middle East between 1914 and 1921 during World War I. The gate is engraved with the names of 13,300 soldiers, including British soldiers and officers. It is Designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

File:India Gate clean.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

The India Gate was part of the work of the Imperial War Graves Commission (IWGC), which came into existence in December 1918 under the British rule for building war graves and memorials to soldiers who were killed in the First World War.The foundation stone of the gate then called the All India War Memorial, was laid on 10 February 1921, at 16:30, by the visiting Duke of Connaught in a ceremony attended by Officers and Men of the British Indian Army, Imperial Service Troops, the Commander in Chief, and Chelmsford, the viceroy.On the occasion, the viceroy is reported to have said, “The stirring tales of individual heroism, will live forever in the annals of this country”, and that the memorial which was a tribute to the memory of heroes, “known and unknown”, would inspire future generations to endure hardships with similar fortitude and “no less valour”.The Duke also read out a message by the King, which said, “On this spot, in the central vista of the Capital of India, there will stand a Memorial Archway, designed to keep”, in the thoughts of future generations, “the glorious sacrifice of the officers and men of the British Indian Army who fought and fell”. During the ceremony, the Deccan Horse, 3rd Sappers and Miners, 6th Jat Light Infantry, 34th Sikh Pioneers, 39th Garhwal Rifles, 59th Scinde Rifles (Frontier Force), 117th Mahrattas, and 5th Gurkha Rifles (Frontier Force), were honoured with the title of “Royal” in recognition of the distinguished services and gallantry of the British Indian Army during the Great War”.

By Subhechcha Ganguly

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