Second World War
Machine Gun Battalion, 17th Dogra Regiment
Formed 15 October 1941 at Jullundar.
Jullundur Brigade Area – 15 October 1941 to 17 June 1942
The battalion was raised at Jullundur on October 15th, 1941. It was raised as a fully mechanised unit with 130 vehicles. It trained at Jullunder and when it left there it embarked at Karachi on June 17th, 1942 for Iraq.
XXI Corps Troops – June 1942 to January 1943
The battalion arrived at Bandar Shapur, Iraq at the same time that their vehicles arrived at Karachi. On arrival it moved to Ahwaz to become XXI Corps Troops as its machine-gun battalion. It was first located at Kermanshah (Battalion HQ and ‘B’ Company) with ‘A’ Company at Senna, ‘C’ Company at Hamadan and ‘D’ Company at Durad. The battalion was located at Hamadan with detachments at Kermanshah and Senna on September 15th, 1942.
The companies moved about until the battalion was concentrated at Qasi-i-Shirin in November 1942. During this period the battalion was generally attached to the 6th Indian Division.
6th Indian Infantry Division – January 1943 to 1 October 1944
The battalion joined the division at Qasi-i-Shirin in January 1943. It moved to Kifir with the division in April 1943 and then to Karind on the Persian plateau. During the winter of 1943-44 it moved to Qizil Rabat and in the summer of 1944 it guarded the railway to Russia in the southern Persian foothills.
Lahore District – Central Command – 15 October 1944 to 24 December 1945
On October 1st, 1944, it left Basra and fourteen days later it was at Jullundur.
5th Indian Infantry Division – 24 December 1944 to
It moved to Burma on 24 December 1944 and came under the command of the 5th Indian Infantry Division at Jorhat in North Assam on arrival. The 5th Indian Division began to leave Jorhat on March 7th, 1945 and concentrated at Kamye, Burma by the end of the month, having moved by way of Dimapur, Imphal and Tamu. On arrival, ‘C’ Company was attached to the 161st Indian Brigade Group and cleared the Taungtha Hills near Meiktila. A’ Company repulsed Japanese attacked in Meiktila. The 5th Indian Division then left Meiktila in six groups organized as followed: an Armoured Group, the 123rd Indian Brigade Group (including ‘D’ Company), the Divisional HQ Group (including HQ and ‘B’ Company), the 161st Indian Brigade Group (including ‘C’ Company), the Administration Group (including Rear HQ and 1st Reinforcements), and the 9th Indian Air-Transportable Brigade (including ‘A’ Company). The 5th Division pushed out of Meiktila at the start of April and secured Toungoo by April 22nd. Companies of the battalion fought as follows: Meiktila (‘A’), Taungtha (‘C’), Yindaw (‘C), Yamethin (‘D’), Shewmyo Bluff (‘C’ and ‘D’), Pyinmana (‘C’) and Toungoo (‘D’). ‘B’ Company in the Divisional HQ Group also had its share of patrols and air attacks.
The 5th Indian Division was then given the task of securing the Sittang crossing north and south of the blown bridge. The lead was given to the 9th Indian Brigade and ‘A’ Company. It fought with the brigade at Abya and Nyaung Kashe. At the start of July, the 5th Division concentrated at Mingaladon near Rangoon to train for Malaya. The Machine-Gun Battalion was split into six ships with the affiliated groups and left Rangoon on August 30th, 1945. It arrived at Singapore on September 5th. The battalion was disbanded post-war at Jhelum on June 8th, 1947.
- Ryan, David A. (2016). Machine Gun Battalions [online]. Available from: http://ww2talk.com/index.php?threads/machine-gun-battalions.60788/page-2#post-704255. Accessed: 3 January 2017.