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Orange marigold to honour fallen Indian soldiers

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An image of Indian soldiers during the World War II

Members of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee of the British Parliament adorn orange marigold to recognise the sacrifice of Indian soldiers. Over 1.3 million Indian soldiers served in World War One and 2.5 million soldiers were mobilised from the subcontinent during World War Two – the largest volunteer army in history. Over 160,000 lost their lives in the two conflicts and 39 individuals received the Victoria Cross medal for their bravery

An image of Indian soldiers during the World War II

Members of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee of the British Parliament highlighted the significant contribution and sacrifice of Indian soldiers during both world wars. Members of Parliament representing all the major political parties chose to wear orange marigolds, the new Indian symbol of remembrance to mark Armed Forces Flag Day ‪on 7 December, at their official meeting.

Over 1.3 million Indian soldiers served in World War One and 2.5 million soldiers were mobilised from the subcontinent during World War Two – the largest volunteer army in history. Over 160,000 lost their lives in the two conflicts and 39 individuals received the Victoria Cross medal for their bravery.

This follows on from the recent Royal Visit to India by HRH The Prince of Wales when he laid a wreath at the Lutyens designed India Gate, which was first inaugurated as the All India War Memorial in 1931. The Royal couple both wore marigolds alongside the red poppy, the traditional British symbol of remembrance, on this occasion.

The Royal British Legion, which runs the annual poppy appeal in UK, is planning a special programme of activity for the 2018 Centenary Year marking the end of World War One which will include recognition of Indian soldiers.

Members of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee of the British Parliament have today highlighted the significant contribution and sacrifice of Indian soldiers during both world wars

Mr Tom Tugendhat MP, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee said: “The Armed Services Flag day this week provides a timely opportunity to highlight the role of the Indian armed forces – particularly ahead of the 2018 Centenary of the end of the First World War. By wearing the orange marigold, I hope our Committee can make an important and highly appropriate gesture in recognising the outsized contribution of Indian soldiers in both world wars.”

THE ATTENDEES INCLUDE: Tom Tugendhat (Chair) (Tonbridge and Malling), Conservative; Ian Austin (Dudley North), Labour; Chris Bryant (Rhondda), Labour; Rt Hon Ann Clwyd (Cynon Valley), Labour; Mike Gapes (Ilford South), Labour (Co-op); Stephen Gethins (North East Fife), Scottish National Party; Ms Nusrat Ghani (Wealden), Conservative; Ian Murray (Edinburgh South), Labour; Andrew Rosindell (Romford), Conservative; Royston Smith (Southampton, Itchen), Conservative and Nadhim Zahawi (Stratford-on-Avon), Conservative.