Click to Enlarge Mahar Regimental Memorial at Ranikhet, Uttar Pradesh.
[Courtesy: Mahar Regimental Centre]
- Theatre Honours: Jammu & Kashmir - 1947-48, Punjab - 1947-48 and Ladakh - 1962.
- Battle Honours: Asal Uttar, Jaurain Kalit, Kalidhar, Tilakpur-Muhadipur, Sehjra, Harar Kalan, Parbat Ali, Thanpir and Shamsher Nagar.
- Honours & Awards: 1 Param Vir Chakra, 4 Maha Vir Chakra, 29 Vir Chakra, 1 Kirti Chakra, 12 Shaurya Chakra, 22 Vishisht Seva Medals and 63 Sena Medals.
- Comments: Mahars have a long and proud tradition of bearing arms. They were the respected members of Shivaji's and later of the Maratha armies. After the British trained and drilled Indian Infantry was formed in the 19th Century, Mahars formed part of the Bombay Presidency Army. They had particularly distinguished themselves in the battle for the defence of Koregaon in 1818. A Mahar battalion was raised in 1917 and took part in the Great War, but was later merged with another regiment. Between the two wars, the Mahars had persistently sought a regiment for themselves for service in the Army. These efforts, marked by the quality and level of arguments advanced by the Mahar leader, Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar, resulted in the Mahar Regiment being raised in 1941. The Regiment fought in Burma, Persia and Iraq in World War II.
In 1946, the Regiment converted to the specialist role of fielding medium machine guns, and for a decade and a half rendered most effective support in combat. The medium machine gun detachments were most warmly welcomed in every infantry battalion, for their skills and competent fire support in combat. The men carried the heavy weapons in every terrain and never failed to hold their ground in defence. During the disturbed conditions in the aftermath of partition, the Regiment helped in the safe transfer of lakhs of refugees, in the face of violent armed mobs. In 1956, the Regiment absorbed three battalions of the Border Scouts, which had been earlier raised for manning the disturbed Punjab border.
Major Ramaswamy Parameswaran, 8th Mahar, is the first & only recipient of the Param Vir Chakra (Posthumous), for the Regiment in 1987.
Two Army Chiefs, General K.V. Krishna Rao and General K. Sundarji, have risen from the battalions of this glorious Regiment.