Alexander vs Porus Battle of the Hydaspes p2
The depth was also not much. Above all, there was a dense forest on the island and on the western side of the river, the Greek side. This forest was enough to hide the Greek army from the eyes of the Indians. Alexander the Greek’s plan was gradually succeeding. The Rajapuras were satisfied in their place that the attack would take place only after the monsoon. The Indian Army was also not on high alert. So one night Alexander the Great began to implement his plan.
He pitched his royal tent near the river where the Indian troops on the eastern bank could see it. Soldiers were also posted outside the tent so that the onlookers thought that the Greek kings were inside. He then ordered his army to light the usual bonfires in the camp, which would give the enemy the impression that the entire Greek army was in camp. After making all these arrangements, he took with him five thousand cavalry and ten thousand foot soldiers and marched towards the island where the river was to be crossed.
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Soon the Greek army reached its destination, the island. The Greeks had already hidden their ships in the forest near the island. On the orders of Iskandar, these boats were put into the river and the army started crossing the river using these boats. Within hours, most of the Greek army, especially the cavalry, had crossed the river. Iskandar immediately ordered his cavalry to advance towards the forces of Rajapuras.
The cavalry advanced, but they received a severe shock of surprise. In front of them stood another raging river. The Greek soldiers did not understand where this second river came from. Have they lost their way? In war you know that even the slightest miscalculation can turn the dice. The Greeks were also very worried because of this. They ran for a while and found out that what they thought was the mainland i.e. the land across the river was actually another island situated in the Jhelum river itself.
Meaning, they were on the right track, but the other island was still out of their sight. But obviously it was not such a big problem. So the Greek army continued to cross the river. Rather, after assessing the depth, they continued to travel in the water on their horses instead of boats. Foot soldiers also got into neck-deep water. In this way, the entire Unai army crossed the river. One advantage that Alexander the Great had was that during the journey, a stormy rain started with heavy thunder.
No one could hear the noise of the advance of the Greek forces through this rain and the thunder of the clouds. Thus, according to his plan, Alexander the Greeks successfully brought the army to the eastern bank of the river Jhelum, but as soon as they came here, their secret was revealed. By this time it was morning. The Indian army was certainly oblivious, but its cavalry carried out routine patrols along the river. One such cavalry saw the Greek army.
He immediately turned back and reached Rajapuras and reported the arrival of the enemy. But the friends of Rajapuras could not understand the whole war tactics of Alexander from this news. The reason was that the entire Greek army was in front of them in their camp. They felt that the enemy had probably sent a small force across the river to divert their attention. so that as soon as we turn towards this force, the whole army with the Greek camp in front may cross the river and attack us.
Thinking this, he sent one of his sons to fight the Greek forces with only two thousand soldiers and one hundred and twenty chariots, chariots. This was a big mistake of Rajapuras. This army was much smaller than the Greek forces. As the Indian forces approached the Greeks, Alexander’s cavalry charged them. They surrounded the enemy and wiped him out. Four hundred Indian soldiers and the son of Porus were killed and all the chariots were also destroyed.
One of the reasons for the destruction of the chariots was that the ground near the river had become swampy due to overnight rain. On this land the wheels of the chariots would get stuck and they could not attack at high speed. In short, the Greeks had won their first skirmish, which boosted their morale. But Alexander the Great had a loss anyway. It is said that his beloved horse “Biocephalus” was also killed by an arrow in the clash.
However, when the defeated Indian soldiers reached Rajapuras, they realized that they had been cheated. What is the bulk of the Greek army?He had also crossed the river from another place. So now Rajapuras left a large part of his army in front of the Greek camp on the bank of river Jhelum to prevent the camp from crossing the river. After that, he took twenty thousand infantry and two thousand cavalry and all the elephants to fight the Greeks.
He himself was riding an elephant. From this elevated position, he was monitoring the situation of the battlefield and issuing orders. In this way, this whole army now reached the competition of Alexander the Great. But friends, even here Alexander the Great made a great trick. He kept the left wing of his army out of sight of the enemy. That is, some were hidden behind the trees etc.
Only the infantry in the center and some cavalry under the command of Alexander the Great on the right stood in front. The Indians standing far away were realizing that Alexander the Great’s army was much smaller than expected. The order of the Indian army was such that the cavalry was stationed on the right and left. Chariots stood in front of the cavalry. In the middle was the infantry and in front of the infantry were elephants.
Between the elephants there were spaces of hundreds, hundreds of feet through which the infantry could advance and attack. With this arrangement the Rajapuras attacked. Alexander the Great first moved the archers instead of fighting directly. They were mounted on horses and advanced towards the left wing of the enemy and showered arrows on the chariots standing in front of him. In no time the chariot horses and the soldiers on them were either killed or fleeing.
This force of chariots was wasted. Alexander the Greek then advanced his cavalry and attacked the cavalry behind the Indian left wing whose chariots had become useless. But the Greek infantry in the center did not attack. It was now that the attacking Greek cavalry seemed to be greatly outnumbered. Rajapuras was watching all this from his elephant.