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May 1913 The Hindi Association is set up in Portland, USA under the leadership of Lala Hardayal, which transforms into the Ghadar Party later that year. The Ghadar Party formed by Indian immigrants aims to further the....
March-May The Komagata Maru incident in 1914 influences the course of the Ghadar movement. Baba Gurdit Singh, encouraged by the Canadian Supreme Court’s decision allowing entry to 35 Indians who had not made a continuous journey, charters a ship....
28 June Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, is assassinated in Sarajevo by Gavrilo Princip. Austria-Hungary blames Serbia for supporting this terrorist attack in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
5 July

Germany promises to support Austria-Hungary in its confrontation with Serbia over the assassination.

23 July

Austria-Hungary issues ultimatum to Serbia to accept its terms or face recrimination.

28 July Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia.
1 August Germany declares war on Russia and begins mobilization.
2 August

Germany invades Luxembourg.

3 August

Germany declares war on France.

Belgium refuses Germany permission to cross its territory to reach France and asserts its neutrality under international treaty.

4 August

Germany declares war on Belgium and invades the country.

Britain declares war on Germany.

6 August

Austria-Hungary declares war on Russia

Battle of the Frontiers. Fighting begins between French and German troops along the border linking the two countries. Continues until early September with heavy casualties.

7 August

British Expeditionary Force (BEF), under the command of Field Marshal Sir John French, begins to land in France. Disembarkation completed on 16 August.

12 August

Britain and France declare war on Austria-Hungary.

13 August

Austro-Hungarian forces begin their first invasion of Serbia.

Battle of the Ardennes. Intense fighting as the French attempt to advance into Germany. French driven back after suffering severe losses. Continues until 25 August.

22 August

Battle of the Sambre. French troops try to block the German advance north-west of the Ardennes.

23 August

Battle of Mons. Fighting begins for British troops around the Belgian town of Mons. The BEF begins to retreat alongside its French allies.

European war becomes global when Japan declares war on Germany.

24 August

First Indian Army contigent leaves India to serve in France.

Battle of Le Cateau. Part of the BEF fights a rearguard action against the Germans to allow the main retreat to continue.

29 August

The Ingress Into India ordinance is passed to prevent the entry of ‘undesirable’ emigrants into India.This helped authorities arrest and curtail the movement of those involved in revolutionary activities.


In Zurich, Chempakaraman Pillai forms the International Pro-India Committee to encourage revolutionary activity in order to achieve Indian independence. Pillai later moves to Berlin and becomes involved with the Berlin Committee.

22 September

The German light cruiser SMS Emden shells Madras near its harbour. This is the only direct enemy action on Indian soil.

23 September

The Siege of Tsingtao. The 36th Sikhs and the 2nd Battalion, South Wales Borderers lay siege to the German controlled port of Tsingtao.

26 September

First Indian Army troops land in France.

29 September The British Government’s orders preventing passengers of the Komagata Maru from disembarking anywhere other than at Calcutta provokes resentment and prompts anti-British mobilisations...
10 October-2 November

Battle of La Bassee. After a short advance, major battles developed around the mining area of La Bassee. This is the first battle for the Indian Corps in France.

12 October-2 November

Battle of Messines. The Messines Ridge is held for ten days against a numerically superior force.

13 October-2 November

Battle of Amentieres. British and Indian troops withdraw to Armentieres area with a view to attack Messines further north. A heavy attack by the Germans follows, causing heavy loss.

16 October

An Indian Army force leaves Bombay to secure British interests in the Persian Gulf by landing in Mesopotamia, part of the Ottoman Empire (Turkey).

19 October

First Battle of Ypres. French and British troops stand firm around the Belgian city of Ypres, preventing the German armies breaking through to the Channel ports.

29 October-31 October

Battle of Gheluvelt. The village Gheluvelt, on the Menin Road is held by 129th Baluchis and a German attempt to capture Ypres is foiled here on 31st October 1914. Sepoy Khudadad Khan becomes the first Indian soldier to win the Victoria Cross on 31 Octobe 1914.

29 October

Turkey joins the war on the side of Germany and Austria-Hungary.

2 November

Russia declares war on Turkey.

The Battle of Tanga is the first action of a long-running campaign in East Africa. German forces led by Colonel Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck...

3 November

British ships blockading the Dardanelles bombard the Turkish forts guarding the entrance to the Straits.

5 November

Britain and France declare war on Turkey.

6 November

Indian Army troops land in Mesopotamia to protect British oil interests in neighbouring Persia, and encourage an Arab revolt against Turkish rule. Capture of Fao port.

7 November

Japanese troops, with British support, capture the German naval base of Tsingtao.

14 November

Lt Gen Sir Arthur Barrett lands at Saniyah and takes command.

17 November

Battle of Sahil or Zain. Turkish forces are defeated.

22 November

British and Indian troops enter Basra in Mesopotamia at the head of the Persian Gulf.

23-24 November

Battle of Festubert. Festubert, held by Indian troops, is attacked by the Germans towards the end of November. The attacks are repulsed. Naik Darwan Singh Negi, 1/39 Garhwal Rifles receives the Victoria Cross for this action.

28 November

Operations in the Tochi Valley, North-West Frontier, India. The North Waziristan Militia defeat a raid by 2000 tribesman from Khost.

3 December

Troops of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) disembark in Egypt to complete their training after it is decided conditions in Britain are unsuitable.

9 December Capture of Qurnah. Surrender of Subhi Bey, Vali of Basra.

20 December Battle of Givenchy. The village south of Festubert is captured by the Germans and retaken by British and Indian troops on 21st December. In Mesopotamia, Indian and British troops fight the action of Mazaiblah, north of Qurnah.