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Delhi War Cemetery
Commonwealth War Graves Commission,
Government of India
Delhi War Cemetery
Used for those deceased
Established 1951
Location 28°36′58″N 77°08′44″E / 28.61624°N 77.14542°E / 28.61624; 77.14542Coordinates: 28°36′58″N 77°08′44″E / 28.61624°N 77.14542°E / 28.61624; 77.14542
near New Delhi, India
Designed by H J Brown (associate member of the Royal Institute of British Architects)
Total burials 1154
Burials by nation
United Kingdom: 941
Indian: 152
Dutch: 30
Canadian: 15
Australian: 10
New Zealand: 5
Polish: 1
Burials by war
Statistics source: Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Delhi War Cemetery contains the war graves of 1154 British Empire casualties from the First and Second World Wars.[1][2] It was established in 1951 when burials from various cemeteries across northern India were shifted onto the site to ensure their permanent preservation.[3] At the front entrance of the cemetery is the 'Delhi 1939-1945 War Memorial' which honours the efforts of the Indian forces during both the world wars.[4][5] Also located in the premises is the 'Delhi 1914-18 Memorial', commemorating 153 fatalities buried in the Meerut Cantonment where graves could no longer be taken care of.[6] The cemetery was commissioned by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and is now jointly maintained with the Government of India and the Ministry of Defence.

Location[]

Delhi War Cemetery is located in Delhi Cantonment, about 11 kilometres from New Delhi. The nearest metro station is the Dhaula Kuan metro station and the Delhi Cantonment Metro Station. The Delhi War Cemetery is located beside the the existing Cantonment Cemetery.[7]

A view of the cemetery. Visible on the right side of the image is the Delhi 1939-1945 War Memorial.

The cemetery[]

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission records 1154 burials in the cemetery, with the remains of citizens of the United Kingdom, undivided India, Netherlands, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Poland from World War I and World War II. 821 of the burials belong to those from the army, 296 for the air force and the remaining burials are from the navy, merchant navy as well as a nurse and civilian. Some of the war graves belong to those from regiments such as the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, 3rd Queen Alexandra's Own Gurkha Rifles, Royal Northumberland Fusiliers, Royal Engineers, Gloucestershire Regiment, Royal Artillery and Burma Rifles.[8] There are also special memorials for 32 service personnel whose remains could not be traced. This includes Maureen Grundy, a Leading Aircraftwoman of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force.[1][9] Her Grave Registration Report by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission show that while her ashes were deposited at St Martin's Church, Delhi, they could not be found by the Church authorities later, and accordingly a special memorial in the form of gravestone with full service particulars, with "Cremated at Delhi" engraved was erected in commemoration.[10] The youngest burials are four service personnel aged 18 years while the oldest burial is Major Reginald Hamilton Richmond of the 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles (Frontier Force).[11] Three Major Generals are also buried at the memorial, Charles Sumner Lund Hertzberg of the Canadian Army, George Grant Tabuteau of the Royal Army Medical Corps and Major General Thomas George Gordon Heywood.[12][13] Hertzberg was commander of the Royal Canadian Engineering Corps as Chief Engineer and died at age 57 after contracting smallpox on a special assignment in India[14] while Heywood died when the Royal Air Force transport plane he was in crashed in Allahabad in 1943.[15] Tabuteau died while commandeering the position of Director of Medical Services, General Headquarters India.[16]

The Stone of Remembrance visible in the foreground as well as the Cross of Sacrifice in the background.

A Stone of Remembrance, with the words 'their name liveth for evermore' engraved is also present at the site, as well as a Cross of Sacrifice. The Stone of Remembrance designed by British architect Edwin Lutyens and the Cross of Sacrifice designed by Reginald Blomfield are two standard architectural features of Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemeteries and memorials.[17] The cemetery covers 10,000 square metres and has been designed by H. J. Brown, an associate member of the Royal Institute of British Architects.[7][18] On the second Saturday of November, Remembrance Day, the British High Commission and others visit the memorial and place wreaths in memory of the dead.[1][2] On 11 November 2018, Tom Tugendhat, a British member of Parliament and former soldier, paid his respects at Delhi War Cemetery where he laid wreaths of poppies made from red Khadi which The Royal British Legion had chosen in 2018 to acknowledge India's role in the war.[19][20]

Delhi 1939-1945 War Memorial[]

The Delhi 1939-1945 War Memorial forms the front entrance to Delhi War Cemetery. It is identical to the memorial at the Karachi War Cemetery. There are no names engraved on the memorial. But a Roll of Honour in Hindi and Urdu can be found at the site which has names of all the 25,000 service personnel of the forces of undivided India who died during World War 2.[21] Since the last rites and disposal or keep of remains varies by religion and country, the memorial is a commemoration for those who are not buried.[1] The memorial is also a tourist location, though less well known as compared to India Gate.[22]

See also[]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Pisharoty, Sangeeta Barooah (2014-05-18). "In search of the dead" (in en-IN). The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. http://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/society/In-search-of-the-dead/article11634637.ece. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "On Remembrance Day, Delhi honours war heroes - Times of India". The Times of India. https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/delhi/On-Remembrance-Day-Delhi-honours-war-heroes/articleshow/49716893.cms. 
  3. T.S Chinna, Rana (2014). Last Post - Indian War Memorials Around the World. United Service Institution of India. pp. 90. ISBN 9788190209793. https://issuu.com/indiandiplomacy/docs/iwm_book. 
  4. Gibson, T. A. Edwin; Ward, G. Kingsley (June 1989) (in en). Courage remembered: the story behind the construction and maintenance of the Commonwealth's military cemeteries and memorials of the wars of 1914-1918 and 1939-1945. H.M.S.O.. pp. 171. ISBN 9780117726086. https://books.google.co.in/books?id=UxQiAQAAIAAJ&q=Delhi+1939-1945+War+Memorial&dq=Delhi+1939-1945+War+Memorial&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj2r9r4gabZAhVBNY8KHTyADQAQ6AEILjAB. 
  5. "Delhi War Cemetery" (in en). https://www.cwgc.org/find/find-cemeteries-and-memorials/92000/delhi-war-cemetery. 
  6. "IND. Delhi War Cemetery" (in en). http://www.ww1cemeteries.com/ind-delhi-war-cemetery.html. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 Canada, Veterans Affairs. "Delhi War Cemetery - The Canadian Virtual War Memorial - Veterans Affairs Canada" (in en). http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/remembrance/memorials/canadian-virtual-war-memorial/cem?cemetery=92000. 
  8. "Delhi War Cemetery Records" (in en). https://www.cwgc.org/find/find-war-dead/results/?cemetery=DELHI%20WAR%20CEMETERY. 
  9. "Records, Delhi War Cemetery". https://www.cwgc.org/find/find-war-dead/results/?cemetery=DELHI+WAR+CEMETERY&tab=wardead&pageSize=100&casualtypagenumber=6. 
  10. Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Grave Registration Report - Delhi War Cemetery, Index No. Ind 6A, Maureen Honor Grundy. Pg 48.
  11. "Major Reginald Hamilton Richmond". https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2177652/richmond,-reginald-hamilton/. 
  12. "In memory of Major General Charles Sumner Lund Hertzberg". Veterans Affairs Canada. http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/remembrance/memorials/canadian-virtual-war-memorial/detail/2177313. Retrieved 31 January 2015. 
  13. "Tabuteau, George Grant". http://www.tracesofwar.com/persons/71843/Tabuteau-George-Grant.htm. 
  14. Granatstein, G.L. (1993). The Generals: The Canadian Army's Senior Commanders in the Second World War. University of Calgary Press. https://books.google.ca/books?id=vgTaIWgPYm4C&pg=PA42&lpg=PA42&dq=charles+sumner+lund+hertzberg&source=bl&ots=iJ7xP8yQU4&sig=sQxXpm7jQyZ9hEaZ1YRbFPJWhjs&hl=en&sa=X&ei=PBbNVPqJGYz4yASH0oHAAg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=charles%20sumner%20lund%20hertzberg&f=false. 
  15. "Major General Thomas George Gordon Heywood". https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/22913912/thomas-george_gordon-heywood. 
  16. "Biography of Major-General George Grant Tabuteau (1881 – 1940), Great Britain". http://www.generals.dk/general/Tabuteau/George_Grant/Great_Britain.html. 
  17. Affairs, Department of Veterans’. "Stone of Remembrance" (in en). https://web.archive.org/web/20090712191403/http://www.dva.gov.au/commems_oawg/OAWG/remembering_war_dead/Pages/stone%20remembrance.aspx. 
  18. "Design, Delhi War Cemetery" (in en). https://www.cwgc.org/find/find-cemeteries-and-memorials/92000/delhi-war-cemetery/design. 
  19. "To soldiers of the Great War". The Tribune. https://www.tribuneindia.com/photo/to-soldiers-of-the-great-war/22092.html. 
  20. "UK honours sole Indian aviator who survived World War I" (in en-GB). https://www.timesnownews.com/international/article/uk-honours-sole-indian-aviator-hardutt-singh-malik-who-survived-world-war-i/311452. 
  21. "History" (in en). https://www.cwgc.org/find/find-cemeteries-and-memorials/92000/delhi-war-cemetery/history. 
  22. "Travelogue: Visiting India Gate and Delhi War Cemetery in the Hyundai Xcent - Overdrive" (in en-US). http://overdrive.in/news-cars-auto/features/travelogue-visiting-india-gate-and-delhi-war-cemetery-in-the-hyundai-xcent/. 

Bibliography[]

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