(Last Updated on : 09-04-2009)
From scattered military units maintained by the Indian Princes, a force known as the Imperial Service Troops was established. Their essential purpose was for imperial use by either the Government of India or the Home Government in overseas assignments.
The Imperial Service Troops were forces nurtured by the Native States of the British Raj in India. The troops were available for service alongside the British Indian Army when such service was called for by the British government. At the onset of the 20th century and closing of the 19th century, they aggregated approximately 18,000 men.
The Imperial Service Troops were customarily inspected by British army soldiers and generally possessed the same gear as Indian soldiers in the British Indian Army. Although their numbers were modest, the Troops were employed in China and British Somaliland in the first decade of the 20th century. The troops later stayed witness to action in World War I.
The armies of the native States were bound by umpteen restrictions that were imposed by treaty arrangements. The Imperial Service Troops existed chiefly for ceremonial purpose or for internal policing.
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