DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN"> Axis History Factbook: Infanterie-Regiment 950 (indische)

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Infanterie-Regiment 950 (indische), or Legion Freies Indien, was formed 26 Aug 1942 from Indian volunteers fighting in the British 3rd (Indian) Motorised Brigade and other units captured in North Africa. It should also be noted that not all were volunteers, many were also pressured to join the unit.

The Indians were recruited with the help of Subhas Chandra Bose, ex-president of the Indian National Congress, who had escaped India despite British surveillance.

 

Apr 1943 it was transferred to Beverloo, Belgium, were it was attached to 16. Luftwaffe-Feld-Division. A large number of men of the 3rd company, 1st battalion, refused to follow orders and go to the Netherlands, this ended with 47 of them being court-martialled and sent back to the POW-camps.

Aug 1943 it was sent to Bordeaux, France, and was attached to 344. Infanterie-Division. When that division was sent to northern France, the Indians remained and was attached to 159. Infanterie-Division.

 

21 Jan 1943 it was made part of the Japanese sponsored Azad Hind Fauj (Indian National Army), an "army" that would grow to include 3 divisions with a total of 33.000 men. Bose had left Germany Feb 1943 on U-180 from Kiel and met up with the Japanese submarine I-29 near Madagascar, reaching Japan occupied Sumatra 6 May. He then travelled to Tokyo were he got involved with Japanese plans. He did of the wounds he suffered in a airplane crash after take-off from Taipei, Formosa (Taiwan), 18 Aug 1945.

 

The 9th company, the one most reliable one, was sent to Italy in the spring of 1944 where it saw action against the British 5th Corps and the Polish 2nd Corps before it was withdrawn from the front to be used in antipartisan operations. It surrendered to the Allied forces Apr 1945, still in Italy.

 

Following the allied landings in Normandy the activities of the partisans, Forces Françaises de l'Intérieur (FFI), began to increase and as the Allies advanced the Indians withdrew, loosing men both through combat and desertions.

 

It was transferred to the Waffen-SS in Aug 1944 and was redesignated Indische Freiwilligen Legion der Waffen-SS.

 

Italy also recruited Indians for their forces, they served in Battaglione Azad Hindostan of the Raggruppamento Centri Militari.


Area of operations 
Germany   (Aug 1942 - Apr 1943) 
Holland   (Apr 1943 - Sep 1943) 
France   (Sep 1943 - Aug 1944) 

Order of battle

I. Bataillon

II. Bataillon

III. Bataillon

13. Infanteriegeschütz Kompanie

14. Panzerjäger Kompanie

15. Pionier Kompanie

Sonderkompanie

 

Flag of Legion Freies Indien

Illustration © Flags Of The World

 

Soldier of Legion Freies Indien with an MG 34


(Courtesy of PJ)

 

Soldier of Legion Freies Indien


(Courtesy of PJ)

 

Obergefreiter of Legion Freies Indien


(Courtesy of Joe Imwalle)

 

Soldier of Legion Freies Indien


(Courtesy of Thomas S)

 

Reference material on this unit

Massimiliano Afiero - Indische Freiwilligen Legion der Waffen SS
Antonio J Munuz - The East came West



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Last update:  5 Oct 2007


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