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Ordnance Depot, Allahabad
508 Army Base Workshop

Ordnance Depot, Allahabad celebrates its centenary on 10 April 2005. The depot is located inside Allahabad Fort which stands resplendent in the modern era as a magnificent piece of architecture drawing awe and admiration from one and all. Built by Akbar the Great in the year 1583, the Fort is located on the banks of the famous Sangam, the confluence of the holy rivers Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati.

The location of the Fort was a well chosen site by the Moghul emperor with the aim of guarding water ways. The Fort is an irregular triangle having three gates-Yamuna Dwar on the south, Ganga Dwar on the east and the main gate on the land side. The Fort has two moats and a draw-back bridge as means of protection with gun positions, pill boxes and tunnels which exist even today.

The association of the Army Ordnance Corps with Allahabad Fort dates back to the year 1801 when Allahabad became a military station. The Fort was ceded by the Nawab of Oudh to the Britishers in 1798 and was thereafter utilised to accommodate the "arsenal" for the British Presidency Army. On April 10, 1905 the 'arsenal' was reorganised and redesignated as the Arsenal and Ordnance Depot and Lt Col CL Wilson was appointed as the first Chief Ordnance Officer of the Allahabad Fort. Independent India saw Maj AK Ganguli being appointed as the first Indian Chief Ordnance Officer on December 27, 1947 succeeding 54 Subedars from Shahabuddin Khan in 1586 to Kripal Dayal in 1801. Col JS Gulati was the 83rd commandant of the depot, in 2005.

During the second World War, the depot underwent reorganisation. The inventory was expanded and diversified to provide general stores and clothing, scientific stores, artillery and ammunition. In addition, the depot also served as a center for imparting training to the newly created cadre of civilian gazetted officers on their recruitment to the corps. Down the years, additional land was acquired outside the Fort to accommodate Salvage, Returned Stores Sub Depot, Mechanical Transport Spares and Armament Engineering and Signal Stores. Today, the depot is the only regional ordnance depot of Central Command. Sticking to its motto, Add Value to Work, it has been providing efficient logistic support to all Army units in the Central Command.

Allahabad Fort abounds with features of great historical significance and mythological beliefs. The Fort has an ancient banyan tree called Akshay Vat or the ever-green tree whose existence is linked with the writing of the Chinese traveller Huien-Tsang and vedic scriptures. Located near the Akshay Vat is the Rang Mahal built by Akbar which served as a theatre. The dancing floor of Rang Mahal is said to have played host to Emperors Akbar and Jahangir. The Fort also has the famous Ashoka Pillar situated in front of the Ordnance Depot Quarter Guard.

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Page last modified: 09-07-2011 02:41:34 ZULU