Battle Honour 'CENTRAL INDIA'

Saturday, 19 June, 1858

BHCentralIndThe Battle Honour CENTRAL INDIA is emblazoned on the Regimental Colours of The Royal Irish Regiment.

Although, generally, the Princes of Central India's provinces remained loyal to British rule, their armies joined with the mutineers. The honour CENTRAL INDIA was conferred on regiments engaged in defeating the Indian Mutiny in those provinces during the winter of 1857-58, and in the following hot season. A number of independent columns were engaged, but the brunt of the fighting was led by General Sir Hugh Rose, commander of the Central Indian Field Force. The capture of Kotah, Jhansi, Calpee, and Gwalior were endured during the campaign of 1858, when men died in their hundreds of cholera or sunstroke.

The Central India Campaign divides itself into a number of well-executed operations in different parts of the country. The Malwa Field Force, under Brigadier C S Stuart, included the 86th Regiment and was in the field from July to December 1857. The major action that supressed the Indian Mutiny was the defeat of the leader Tantia Tope on 19 June 1858 at Gwailor.

The distinction CENTRAL INDIA was in fact a 'Theatre' Honour but for ease of reference is described as a Battle Honour. CENTRAL INDIA was awarded to the 83rd Regiment, the 86th Regiment and the 3rd Madras (European) Regiment which became the 2nd Battalion The Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.