They were originally intended as pathfinders for German forces in Asia, but were soon sent to help guard the Atlantic Wall.Few who were part of the Free India Legion ever saw any combat, and very few were ever stationed outside Europe.
The "Indianisation" of the British Indian Army began with the formation of the Prince of Wales Royal Indian Military College at Dehradun in March 1912 with the purpose of providing education to the scions of aristocratic and well-to-do Indian families, and to prepare selected Indian boys for admission into the Royal Military College, Sandhurst.
Indian officers were given a King's commission after passing out and were posted to one of the eight units selected for Indianisation.
In 1915 there was a mutiny by Indian soldiers in Singapore.
The United Kingdom made promises of self-governance to the Indian National Congress in return for its support but reneged on them after the war, following which the Indian Independence movement gained strength.
A Sikh soldier of the 4th Division (the Red Eagles) of the Indian Army, attached to the British Fifth Army in Italy.