Stand At East

Which army, over two million men strong, had not a single conscript? Which army bore the brunt of the Japanese attack on Burma and Malaya? Which army fought in North Africa and took part in the assault on Monte Cassino in Italy? The answer is the World War Two Indian Army: a remarkable fighting force of men from almost every caste, creed and corner of India, serving under both British and Indian officers.

It played a crucial but forgotten role in the allied victory.

Sir Mark Tully presents a unique testimony of this force in its glory days.

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Which army, over two million men strong, had not a single conscript? Which army bore the brunt of the Japanese attack on Burma and Malaya? Which army fought in North Africa and took part in the assault on Monte Cassino in Italy? The answer is the World War Two Indian Army: a remarkable fighting force of men from almost every caste, creed and corner of India, serving under both British and Indian officers.

It played a crucial but forgotten role in the allied victory.

Sir Mark Tully presents a unique testimony of this force in its glory days.This programme looks at the transformation of the Indian Army from using horses to tanks, and small arms to artillery, from an army limited to defending India to a force which expanded twelvefold to become the world's largest ever volunteer army fighting on many different fronts.

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Survivors of the gruelling Burma campaign recall the horrors of battle; Naga warriors pay tribute to their heroine queen Ursula Graham-bower, a remarkable Englishwoman who led them against the Japanese; old soldiers remember the touching bravery and endurance of their military mules and veterans of the Indian National Army reflect on the provocations which drove them into fighting against the British.

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At the famous battle sites of Imphal and Kohima, locals remember life under the Japanese Army.

INDIAn Army soldiers recall sickness and hunger and bravery on both sides and the last surviving INDIAn veteran to hold the VC talks about his war.

At the Rajputana Rifles regimental centre, INDIAn officers reflect on the legacy of the British.

And veterans of what is called the forgotten army demand recognition for their achievement in inflicting the biggest defeat on land the Japanese ever suffered.