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Order of British India

Order of British India
Insignia of the Order of British India, First Class
Awarded by the British Empire
Type Order of merit
Eligibility Officers of the British Indian Army holding a viceroy's commission, Indian Officers of Indian States Forces, Frontier Corps and Military Police
Awarded for Long, faithful and honourable service
Status No longer awarded after 1947
Post-nominals OBI
Established 17 April 1837
Next (higher) Royal Red Cross (Class II)
Next (lower) Kaisar-i-Hind Medal[1]

Ribbon 1837–1838

Ribbon 1838–1939

First Class ribbon 1939–1947

Second Class ribbon 1939–1947

The Order of British India was an order of merit which was bestowed by the East India Company for "long, faithful and honourable service", beginning in 1837. The Company's powers were removed after the Indian Mutiny, and the Order was incorporated into the British honours system in 1859. The order became obsolete in 1947, after the partition of British India into the Dominion of India and the Dominion of Pakistan.


  • The Medal 1
  • Recipients 2
    • First Class 2.1
    • Second Class 2.2
  • Notes 3
  • References 4

The Medal

The Order was awarded in two classes: first and second class. The recipients of the second class were entitled to the title Bahadur (hero) and recipients of the first class were entitled to use the title Sardar Bahadur (heroic leader), both using the post-nominal letters, OBI. The order was awarded for distinguished service on a particular campaign, but was also often awarded to officers for between 20 and 30 years service.


The following is an incomplete list of people appointed to the Order of British India:

First Class

  • Subadar Major and Hony Captain Sant Singh, 2/3rd Sikh Pioneers (late 1/32nd Sikh Pioneers), Sardar Bahadur, OBI, IOM, IDSM
  • Honorary Captain, Sardar Bahadur, Sant Singh Mangat, I.O.M., I.D.S.M., O.B.I. (1st Class, 1931), British Indian Army
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Bakhshi Jaswant Singh,O.B.I. 1st Class in 1916. Born 1867, Died 1933.
  • Honorary Captain, Sardar Bahadur Abhimansing Gurung, OBI (1st class),1891-1898, 10th Princess Mary's Own Gurkha Rifles.
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Bakhshi Jagat Singh, O.B.I 1st Class, 16th Bengal Cavalry, by Lord Minto.
  • Sardar Bahadur General Bakhshish Singh OBI 1st Class June 15, 1912 (Military Secretary Patiala)
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Khan Bahadur OBI 1st Class Jan 1947
  • Khan Bahadur General Fateh Naseeb Khan OBI 1st Class January 17,1929 (Alwar State Forces)[2]
  • Major General Sardar Bahadur Agha Mohammad Afzal Khan, C.I.E O.B.I
  • Colonel Sardar Bahadur Hashim Ali Khan, Nawab Mir Hahsim Nawaz Jung, SB, OBI (1st Class 1897).[3]
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Hazura Singh (1st Class 1914)
  • Honorary Captain "Sardar Bahadur"Muzzafar Khan Kayani,OBI (Ist Class),12th Cavalry FF. ADC to Viceroy Lord Wavell and to Lord Mount Batten.
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Harnam Singh Bindra, OBI (1st Class, World War II)
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Ranjit Singh Khatter OBI (1st Class, World War II).
  • Sardar Bahadur Lt Col Dr Gopal Singh Chawla OBI (1st Class 1946)
  • Subedar Major Sardar Bahadur Singh Atwal, OBI (1st Class, World War 2).
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Hazara Singh Bahad, OBI (1st Class).
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Mihr Din, OBI (1st Class 1918).
Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur, Mihr Din, OBI (1st Class)
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Dr. Kartar Singh Grewal, OBI (1st Class 1939).
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Bhola Singh Gulia, OBI (1st Class), Indian Survey Regiment of Badli, Haryana, India.[4]
  • Honorary Captain Subedar Bahadur Nar Gurung, MC, OBI (1st Class).
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Muhammad Ismail, IOM (3rd Class 1897), OBI (1st Class 1917), British Indian Army.[5]
  • Lt.Gangadat Bahadur
  • Lieutenant Colonel Sardar Bahadur Aman Singh Jodha, OBI, IOM, Jodhpur Lancers.[6]
  • Honorary Lieutenant Sardar Bahadur Ahmadullah Khan, Khan Bahadur, IOM, OBI (1st Class 1 January 1909), IMD Khillat Sword of Honour, Jagirdar and Honorary Magistrate.
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Raja Larasahib Khan, OBI (1st Class 1939).
  • Sebedar and Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Zain Muhammad Khan, OBI (1st Class).
  • Subedar-Major Sardar Bahadur Oomar Khan, OBI (1st Class), 2nd Baluch, 29th Regiment BO; N.I. 1880. (Zamindar Karachi)
  • HE Honorary Lieutenant Colonel Sardar Bahadur Raja Atta Ullah Khan, OBI (1st Class 1868), IOM.[7]
  • Subedar Major/Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Bishon Singh Kathait, OBI (1st Class, World War 2), 5/9 Gurkha Rifles.
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Kalandar Khan Khattak, of Jalozai-Noshera, OBI (Chief of Khattaks and Zailidar)
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Shankar Dass Randhawa, OBI (1st Class), 2nd Punjab Regiment.[8]
  • Captain Sardar Bahadur Bhanwar Singh Shekhawat, MBE, MC and Bar, OBI (1st Class), of Prithvipura.
  • Lieutenant Colonel Sardar Bahadur Anop Singh, OBI (1st Class), Jodhpur Lancers.
  • Subedar Major Sardar Bahadur Jodh Singh, OBI (1st Class), 14th Punjab Regiment, British Indian Army.
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Rup Singh, OBI (1st Class).
  • Subedar Sardar Bahadur Hari Singh Thapa, OBI (1st Class).
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Th. Khushal Singh Ugrawat, OBI (1st Class).
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Kishan Singh Grewal Of Kila Raipur, OBI (1st and 2nd Class)
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Phoola Singh.
  • Honorary Captain Sardar Bahadur Doola Singh.
  • Sardar Bahadur Risaldar-Major Malook Singh Ahlawat OBI (1st Class),of Gochhi Haryana- Cavalry (Awal Rissala).
  • Sardar Bahadur Rijha Singh
  • Subedar Unad Singh IOM (1st class) 24/Aug/1916 (Zamindar of Kharak Kalan, Harayana)Unit- 1/119th Infantry
  • Deputy Commandant Sardar Bahadur Sardar Kishan Singh Thind, OBI

Second Class

  • Lieutenant Colonel Bahadur Hem Singh Bhati, was awarded OBI (Served in World War 1, Jodhpur Sardar Risala, Jodhpur). His son Major Shaitan Singh Bhati was awarded by Param Veer Chakra for his extraordinary bravery and Sacrifice during Indo China War 1962 (War of Rezangla, Chusul).
  • Subedar Karam Ilahi "Khan Bahadur" * Awarded OBI (Served In Both World Wars, Trained Platoons In Poona, Headquarters: Diggi Camp, Mentioned In Dispatches : The Afghan War On 01.11.1919 Under The Name : Karam Elahi 4111 Naik 3rd S.&M For His Gallant And Distinguished Services Rendered In The Army Recorded By C.C.Monro, Date Of Enrolment: 18.10.1912 Date of Discharge : 05.02.1944 From: Rawalpindi / Pakka Khoo
  • Subedar Bahadur Puran Singh Saran, OBI (2nd Class) (Pind: Mallah, Jagraon, Ludhiana District, Punjab, India)
  • Subedar Major Purshotam Dass OBI (2nd Class)
  • Risaldar-Major Mir Dad Khan Tarin/Tareen, of Rihanna, NWFP, 9th Hodson's Horse.
  • Risaldar Nadir Ali Khan, Bamba Rajput, 9th Hodson's Horse.[9]
  • Subedar Saad Ullah Khan Kals, OBI (IInd Class), Retired from ASC Centre Nowshera,Pakistan Army.Served in both World Wars and awarded OBI in IInd World War.
  • Subedar and Honorary Captain Bahadur Inayat Ullah Asmie, OBI (2nd Class), 10 Baluch Regiment.[10]
  • Subedar and Honorary Lieutenant Bahadur Mohammed Abdul Hafiz, OBI (2nd Class 1917), IDSM, 61st Pioneers.[11]
  • Sardar Subedar Bahadur Humail Khan, OBI (1st Class).
  • Subedar Major Bahadur Raja Nazar Muhammad Khan, OBI (2nd Class), IOM.
  • Subedar Bahadur Niaz Muhammad Khan, OBI (2nd Class), IOM, 4/7 Rajput Regiment, British Indian Army.
  • Subedar-Major Bahadur Syed Nazar Mohammad Shah, OBI (2nd Class).
  • Subedar and Honorary Captain Bahadur Syed Rasool Shah son of Syed Fazal Shah, OBI (2nd Class), RIASC, PJO 31511.
  • Colonel Rao Bahadur Thakur Balu Singh ji Inderpura, OBI (2nd Class).
  • Subedar-Major Bahadur Jagindar Singh, OBI (2nd Class), IOM (2nd Class).[12]
  • Subedar Bahadur Maima Singh OBI (2nd Class), IOM, 15th Bengal Infantry.
  • Subedar Bahadur Richhpal Singh, OBI (2nd Class).[13]
  • Subedar Bahadur V. Parangusam Naidu OBI (2nd Class)RIASC.
  • Subedar Bahadur Syed Nawab Shah, Madina Syedan, Gujrat,Pakistan. (1879-1909)
  • Subedar Muhammad Sulaiman Major Bahadur, STAR OF INDIA
  • Subedar Major and Honorary Lieutenant Ram Singh Kaila, Bahadur, IOM, OBI, of 15 LOODIANAH SIKHS ( 1887-1916), 82 PUNJABIS (1916-21). IOM for gallant at Chagra Kotal ( Tirah, NWFP, Pakistan) vide GGO No. 430 of 1898. OBI vide Gazette of India No. 872 of 1917.


  1. ^ ORDERS OF WEAR, Website of the UK government: Directgov, date accessed 2011-03-29.
  2. ^ Various (15 March 2007). Alwar State List of Leading Officials, Nobles and Personages. Potter Press. p. 4.  
  3. ^ Various (15 March 2007). Hyderabad State List of Leading Officials, Nobles and Personages. Potter Press. p. 4.  
  4. ^ 33 Years record of unbroken service (1911-1944). Served in both world wars. Madras War Review journal. 21 January 1944. 
  5. ^ Captain Sardar Bahadur Muhammad Ismail, 32nd Mountain Battery British India Army received the following orders and decorations for his meritorious and gallantry services: IOM (3rd Class) 10 June 1897, OBI (2nd Class) 9 October 1909, Royal Victorian Medal 1910, OBI (1st Class) 1917. He was selected as ADC to King George V and a member of the five men Indian contingent that participated in the coronation of King George V. His appointments, OBI, and IOM awards are recorded in both GGO[L/Mil/17/2, L/Mil/17/5] and the India Gazette [V/II].
  6. ^ Lieutenant Colonel Sardar Bahadur Aman Singh Jodha was awarded the IOM, 23 September 1918 at Haifa.
  7. ^ Hodson's Horse by Cardew 1876 & Testimonials published by Punjab Government 1900 and List of British Agents in Afghanistan. He was resident of Wazirabad and grandson of the Raja of Rajawar (Rajouri).
  8. ^ Fought in both the World Wars including theatres in Mesopotamia, Egypt et al. Born 1893 (perhaps), retired in 1948 and died at Tanda Hospital, Kangra, Himachal Pradesh, India on 11 January 1967 after an illness. This information is submitted by Ishwar Kaur's younger son, Guru Sharan Singh.
  9. ^ The award of the OBI to him was gazetted in August 1897, as he was one of a special contingent that went to London to present a Guard of Honour to Queen Victoria, on the occasion of her Diamond Jubilee. Naval and Army Illustrated August 1897; also see Indian Army Lists, 1902, 1911
  10. ^ Captain Bahadur Inayat Ullah Asmi, OBI served in two World Wars, as Subedar and Captain (King's Commission); he died in 1947 in Lahore.
  11. ^ Lieutenant Bahadur Mohammed Abdul Hafiz, OBI, IDSM, awarded OBI 2nd Class on 2 August 1919 for "gallant and distinguished services in the Field" on 11 October 1917.
  12. ^ Subedar-Major Bahadur Jagindar Singh, OBI "" O'Dwyer, Michael Francis (1918). War Speeches. Lahore, Punjab: Superintendent Government Printing. p. 129. his conspicuous gallantry in action on the 17th November 1914 when with a party of Sappers under the command of a British Officer he was always to the fore and led his men with great determination into the enemy's trenches. Subedar-Major Jagindar Singh, Saini Sikh of Kheri Salabatpur in Bupar, gained the 2nd Class Order of Merit at the battle of Loos in Belgium for striking leadership and conspicuous bravery in action after most of his company and all but one British Officer in his regiment had been killed or wounded. This officer was also awarded the 2nd Class of the Order of British India for distinguished conduct in the field. 
  13. ^ Subedar Bahadur Richhpal Singh was Mentioned in (the Commander-in-Chief's) Despatches for the operation in the Western Desert, Libya and Cyzinaica in December 1940 and again for distinguished services in Italy.


  • Peter Duckers, British Orders And Decorations, Shire Publications, Buckinghamshire, 2004
  • The London Gazette: no. 34694. p. 6511. 26 September 1939.
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