A Popular History of The Great War/Volume 1/Page 101

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THE KING'S MESSAGE TO INDIA


whilst on active service, of the 1st Hyderabad Imperial Service Lancers and of the 20th Deccan Horse. The maharajah of Mysore made a magnificent gift of fifty lacs of rupees (£333,000) for expenditure in connexion with the Indian Expeditionary Force and also placed at the disposal of the government his cavalry—the Mysore Imperial Service Lancers. The same story of spontaneous loyalty and practical aid could be repeated in detail of many other states and their rulers throughout India.

In recognition of these fine efforts the King-Emperor sent a message of gratitude to the Indian peoples which still further consolidated their loyalty and encouraged them in their united efforts. His proclamation read as follows:

To the Princes and Peoples of My Indian Empire:
During the past few weeks the peoples of my whole Empire at home and overseas have moved with one mind and purpose to confront and overthrow an unparalleled assault upon the continuity of civilization and the peace of mankind.
The calamitous conflict is not of my seeking. My voice has been cast throughout on the side of peace. My Ministers earnestly strove to allay the causes of strife and to appease differences with which my Empire was not concerned. Had I stood aside, when, in defiance of pledges to which my Kingdom was a party, the soil of Belgium was violated and her cities laid desolate, when the very life of the French nation was threatened with extinction, I should have sacrificed my honour and given to destruction the liberties of my Empire and mankind. I rejoice that every part of the Empire is with me in this decision. Paramount regard for treaty faith and the pledged word of rulers and peoples is the common heritage of Britain and India.
Among the many incidents that have marked the unanimous uprising of the populations of my Empire in defence of its unity and integrity, nothing has moved me more than the passionate devotion to my Throne expressed both by my Indian subjects and by the Feudatory Princes and the Ruling Chiefs of India, and their prodigal offers of their lives and their resources in the cause of the Realm. Their one-voiced demand to be foremost in the conflict has touched my heart and has inspired to the highest issues the love and devotion which, as I well know, have ever linked my Indian subjects and myself. I recall to mind India's gracious message to the British nation of goodwill and fellowship which greeted my return in February, 1912, after the solemn ceremony of my Coronation Durbar at Delhi, and I find in this hour of trial a full harvest and noble fulfilment of the assurance given by you that the destinies of Great Britain and India were indissolubly linked.
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