Thursday, 15 October 2020

Where Meghdoot Force dare!

The exploits of Meghdoot Force Commandos undertaken in September 1965 during the Indo-Pak war was daring and helped the army to move forward. Meghdoots, raised and led by Major Megh Singh, the creator of Indian Special Forces, the first Commanding Officer of 9 Para Commando now 9 Parachute Special Force. Lt Col Megh Singh, born on 1 March 1924, an Indian military officer with foresight. Hailing from Rajasthan, and from a Rathore Rajput family, he joined the Patiala State forces. Lt Col Megh Singh is known as a person who created the Special Forces in India. His creation was a role model for the other Special Forces and has served the nation at times of need.

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Lt Col Megh Singh is the person who created the Special Forces in India. Then Maj Megh Singh who was surpassed for the promotion to Lt Colonel approached Lt Gen Harbaksh Singh and he volunteered to raise a Special Commando for India. Lt Gen Harbaksh Singh accepted Maj Megh Singh's proposal. Maj Megh Singh raised a special force of volunteers personally chosen by him. The formation was not formally authorized by the Government so it was informally named as the 'Meghdoot force' in the name of Maj Megh Singh. Harbaksh Singh in his book ‘In the Line of Duty: A soldier remembers’ mentions that Megh Singh was demoted to Major after a court-martial and after his daring raid across the enemy line when he returned with a bullet injury in his thigh, Harbaksh Singh again promoted him as a Lt Colonel.


He was awarded the Vir Chakra for his bravery in battle. His Vir Chakra citation reads as under: Lieutenant Colonel Megh Singh, then a Major, with a Brigade in Jammu and Kashmir, successfully conducted three important raids into enemy territory from 1 to 11 September 1965. On 2 September, his force blew up a big culvert on the Kotli Bandigopalpur road, disrupting the enemy's line of communication inside their territory. On 6 September, his column captured two important piquets Neja Pir and Ari Dhok. Again on 10 September, his column went two miles deep into enemy territory and affected the Uri-Poonch link-up at Kahuta in spite of heavy enemy fire. In all these actions, by his exemplary courage and initiative, Lieutenant Colonel Megh Singh inspired confidence in the volunteers under him, causing confusion and casualties in enemy camps and facilitating the success of the brigade's operational plan.

So, just a company size force without, any fire support was able to capture two important enemy held posts in depth with just one wounded. In comparison Raja and Chand Tekri were captured only after heavy fighting and a very large number of casualties. With capture of Aridhok the route to Kahuta was wide open and Meghdoots had ensured that the elusive Uri Poonch link up now looked a real possibility for the Indian Army. Thus the Mission Next ended for the Meghdoot Force with success.

Also read: India-China diplomatic row almost erupted into a full scale war in 1967

                 How a Cargo Ship helped win World War 2

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Army Day

In India, Army Day is celebrated on 15 January every year. On January 15, 1949, the command of the Indian army was handed over from Gen Sir Francis Butcher to Lieutenant General KM Cariappa. Army Day marks the transfer of power from the British to Independent India, an important event in Indian history.

The Day is marked by a display of military strength at the Cariappa Parade ground in Delhi cantonment. The parade showcases various routines such as aerial stunts and bike pyramids. Bravery awards such as unit credentials and Sena medals are also presented to deserving personnel.

According to Global Firepower Estimates, India has the second largest military manpower in the world. As of 2019, total available active military manpower is 13, 62, 500 personnel.

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