Remembering India’s First World War soldiers in Brighton and Hove

Besi Besemar October 19, 2014

Dan Jarvis MP for Barnsley and a former Major in The Parachute regiment is the Labour Party’s lead for the centenary commemorations of the First World War.

Dan Jarvis MP, for Barnsley
Dan Jarvis MP, for Barnsley

ON FRIDAY, October 19 he visited the City’s India Gate at the south entrance to the Royal Pavilion Gardens, which commemorates more than 4,000 Indian wounded soldiers who were cared for in the Royal Pavilion between 1914 and 1916 on Friday, October 19.

He said: “The First World War changed Britain forever. It touched every family, shaped every community and fundamentally altered our country’s place in the world.

“In this important year of remembrance, we must never forget the contribution the millions of men from across the Commonwealth who weren’t born in Britain, but who came to fight for Britain in our country’s hour of need. More than one million Hindu, Muslim and Sikh soldiers came from the Indian subcontinent alone.

“I am pleased to have had the chance to visit the Indian Memorial Gateway – a gift from India unveiled in 1921 – which is dedicated not only to those soldiers but also to the people of Brighton. They welcomed and cared for more than 12,000 Indian servicemen in the Royal Pavilion, the Dome and in other local hospitals.

“It reminds us that the heroes of the First World War served on the home front as well as the front line, including the doctors and nurses who healed the sick and cared for the wounded.

“I am very pleased that the City will be holding an Act of Remembrance at the Gate this weekend to remember the service and sacrifice of the Indian soldiers who fought in the War. We must never forget this special connection with India.”


Purna Sen
Purna Sen

Brighton resident Purna Sen, Labour Parliamentary candidate for Brighton Pavilion, attended the memorial event today, Sunday 19.

She said: “We can all be proud of the way in which Brighton people welcomed and cared for these soldiers.

“And we can be proud of the way the City continues to remember those soldiers through exhibitions in the Royal Pavilion and elsewhere and through the Chattri memorial on the Downs above Patcham marking the place where over 50 Hindu and Sikh soldiers were cremated and where an annual memorial service is held. The India Gate and the Chattri are permanent reminders to us all of that link with the people of India.”