19th Infantry Division (India)


19th Infantry Division (India)

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name=Indian 19th Division


caption=
dates=19411945
country=United Kingdom
allegiance=
branch=British Indian Army
type=
role=
size=
command_structure=
garrison=
equipment=
current_commander=
ceremonial_chief=
colonel_of_the_regiment=
notable_commanders=Major General Jackie Smyth VC
Major General Thomas Wynford Rees
identification_symbol=
identification_symbol_2=
nickname="Dagger Division"
patron=
motto=
colors=
march=
mascot=
battles=Burma Campaign
anniversaries=
decorations=
battle_honours=

The Indian 19th Infantry Division was raised during World War II, and played a prominent part in the final part of the Burma Campaign.

It was raised in Secunderabad in India in 1941. It originally consisted of the 62nd, 63rd and 64th Indian Infantry Brigades. Its first commander was Major-General Jackie Smyth VC , who was subsequently transferred to command the Indian 17th Infantry Division, then fighting in Burma. (Indian 63rd Infantry Brigade was also transferred from the division to Burma in March 1942, to be replaced by Indian 98th Infantry Brigade).

The division remained under temporary commanders until late 1942 when Major General Thomas Wynford Rees was appointed to command. It spent an extended period on internal security duties and in training before being committed to the Burma front in November 1944. As part of Indian XXXIII Corps, it played the major role in the capture of Mandalay. Transferred to Indian IV Corps, it guarded the British Fourteenth Army's line of communication and mounted an offensive towards Mawchi, in the Shan States.

Its successes were due to its fitness and high morale. Not having been stationed in the unhealthy mountains on the Indian / Burmese border in 1943, nor fought during the battles in 1944, it had a high proportion of pre-war regulars among its officers and senior NCO's.

The division was occasionally referred to as the "Dagger Division", from its divisional sign, which was a hand thrusting a dagger overhand, in yellow on a red background.

Order of Battle March 1 1945

General Officer commanding: "Major General Thomas Wynford Rees"
Chief of Staff: "Lieutenant Colonel John Masters DSO"
Commander, Royal Artillery: "Colonel WPA Robinson MC"

:Indian 62nd Infantry Brigade "(Brigadier James Ronald Morris DSO)":: 2nd Bn Welch Regiment:: 3rd Bn 6th Rajputana Rifles:: 4th Bn 9th Gurkha Rifles

:Indian 64th Infantry Brigade "(Brigadier George Alexander Bain)":: 2nd Bn Worcestershire Regiment:: 5th Bn 10th Baluch Regiment:: 1st Bn 6th Gurkha Rifles

:Indian 98th Infantry Brigade "(Brigadier Charles Ian Jerrard)":: 2nd Bn Royal Berkshire Regiment:: 8th Bn 12th Frontier Force Regiment:: 4th Bn 4th Gurkha Rifles

:Divisional Units:: 7th Light Cavalry (attached) "Stuart Tanks":: 1st Bn Assam Regiment (attached)

:: 1st Bn 15th Punjab Regiment ("Divisional reconnaissance regiment"):: MG Bn 11th Sikh Regiment ("Divisional Machine gun unit")

:: 134 Medium Regiment RA:: 4 Field Regiment IA:: 5 Field Regiment IA:: 115 Field Regiment IA:: 29 Mountain Regiment IA:: 33 Anti-tank Regiment RA ("mixed anti-tank and light anti-aircraft batteries")

:: 64 Field Company IE:: 65 Field Company IE:: 327 Field Park Company IE

External links

*oob unit | id = 6011 | name = 19 Indian Infantry Division

Further reading

* Jon Latimer, "Burma: The Forgotten War", London: John Murray, 2004 ISBN 0-7195-6576-6


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