Military Wiki
71st Coorg Rifles
Active 1767-1904
Country Indian Empire
Branch Army
Type Infantry
Part of Madras Army (to 1895)
Madras Command
Uniform Red; faced, 1853 dark green, 1882 green, 1891 emerald green
1903 Green; faced scarlet
Engagements Third Anglo-Mysore War

The 71st Coorg Rifles were an infantry regiment of the British Indian Army. They could trace their origins to 1767, when they were raised as the 15th Battalion Coast Sepoys.

The regiment served in the Third Anglo-Mysore War but saw no more active service during the nineteenth century. In 1901 as the 11th Madras Infantry, it was reorganised and the basis of recruitment changed from Madrasi to Coorg soldiers. The Coorgs had not previously been recruited into the Indian Army. The restructured regiment was renamed the 71st Coorg Rifles in 1903, and given dark green uniforms with scarlet facings. Most unusually in the Indian Army, red fezs are reported to have been worn. They were disbanded in 1904 because of insufficient recruits[1] and the mess funds and silver were bequeathed to the newly raised 2/9th Gurkha Rifles.[2]

In 1942 Coorgs were again recruited into the newly raised 1st Coorg Battalion. Like the 71st Coorg Rifles, the new battalion had a badge incorporating crossed Coorg knives. In 1946 it was converted to the 37 (Coorg) Anti-Tank Regiment of the Royal Indian Artillery.

Predecessor names[]

  • 15th Battalion Coast Sepoys - 1767
  • 11th Coorg Infantry - 1902
  • 71st Coorg Rifles - 1903


  1. John Gaylor, page 9 "Sons of John Company", ISBN 0-946771-98-7
  2. W.Y. Carman, page 226 "Indian Army Uniforms - Infantry"
  • Barthorp, Michael; Burn, Jeffrey (1979). Indian infantry regiments 1860-1914. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 0-85045-307-0. 

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