2ND PARA (MARATHA)
The Battalion was raised on 6th September 1797 for the Bombay Presidency as part of a treaty with the Raja of Travancore and was designated as the 2nd Battalion 5th Regiment native Infantry of the Travancore Regiment.
The Battalion’s gallant role in the storming of Madgala in the Abyssinian campaign (1867-68) earned it the honour of being designated as a Light Infantry Regiment. On return to India the Battalion took part in the second Afghan war. In 1885 the Battalion was designated as 10th Regiment The Bombay Native Light Infantry and was subsequently redesignated as 110 Maharatta Light Infantry in 1903.
In the First World War, the Battalion fought against the Turks in Mesopotamia and won laurels in action at Shaiba, Kut-El-Amara and Ctesiphon. The Battalion also formed part of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force in Palestine.
In the Second World War, the Battalion won undying fame in the bloody assault on the formidable Italian fortress of Keren. The Battalion also fought against Rommel as part of the British Army. Under 10 Indian Division in Italy, NK Yeshwant Ghadge won the Victoria Cross posthumously at Citta-de-Castello for a supreme act of valor.
The Battalion was specially selected for parachute duties under 2nd Indian Airborne Division in 1946 and was redesignated as 3rd parachute Battalion The Maharatta Light Infantry.
In 1948, the battalion was rushed to Jammu and Kashmir to stem the onslaught of Pakistani Forces and fought legendary action at Naushera and Jhangar.
On 15th April 1952, the Battalion became part of the Parachute Regiment unit and was redesignated as Second Battalion The Parachute Regiment. The Battalion saw service with the Indian Custodian Forces in Korea and was part of the forces which liberated Goa in 1961.
In the Indo-Pak war, the Battalion saw action both in the Rann of Kutch and Lahore Theatres. In 1971, the Battalion won the distinction of carrying out the first airborne assault of the Indian Army by para dropping in the Eastern Sector and was the first Indian unit to enter Dacca.
From April 1990 to December 1991, the Battalion served in OP HIFAZAT carrying out counter insurgency operations in the Northeast. Its commendable performance there earned one KC (Posthumously) and a number of other awards.
Till date the Battalion has won 30 battle/theatre honours and has the honour of being one of the most decorated battalions of the Army. The 240 awards won by the Battalion includes one Victoria Cross, four Mahavir Chakras, one Kirti Chakra, 17 Vir Chakras and one Ashok Chakra Class III.
Stamp issued to mark Bicentenary celebrations on 7.9.1997.
Date of Issue: 7.9.1997