Pride, Honour, Glory

Indian army

A career in the Indian Army is not just a career choice. It is a way of life, a journey of personal and professional fulfilment. Youth Inc tells you more about this enriching profession.

“How many of you joined the Army because of the film Lakshya?”  This is a question posed to young cadets on the first day of their Army training. Seventy percent of the cadets present raises their hands in response. Well, the bad news is that the training process for joining the Indian Army is not a three-minute montage with the uplifting compositions of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy playing in the background. But the good news is that the experience is actually more enriching than can be ever be portrayed on screen. The divisions in the Indian Army can be broadly classified into the Fighting Forces (the infantry, the artillery, the armoured corps, etc) and the Support Services (intelligence corps, army service corps, army medical corps).

Skill Set

A life in the Army is best suited for people who aspire for the honour and pride associated with the Armed forces. It is also essential to possess an adventurous spirit because you might be posted in places that you have never even heard of. One also needs to be a team player as the Army on the principle of ‘one for all and all for one’. As an Army officer, you are expected to know your men inside out to work as a collective unit. Those in the Army invariably establish bonds that last a lifetime. A Lieutenant in the Army says, “There is a strong feeling of brotherhood in the Army. In fact, even years later, they might forget their mother’s birthday or wedding anniversary but not a fellow Army person’s birthday.”

Perks and Challenges

There are a number of benefits that are enjoyed by people in the Armed forces such as subsidised education and travel, military service pay, club memberships, resettlement programs (six-month MBA programmes from reputed B-schools such as the IIMS), etc. Also, being a part of the Indian Army exposes you to a variety of people and experiences. From interacting with foreign Armies to sharing meals with locals in remote areas, the Army life is anything but predictable. One of the most challenging times in Army life is the training period. Those who are unable to cope with the pressures of training often quit in a matter of weeks. “Your attitude towards training is really important. If you are motivated to wear the Army uniform one day, you will succeed. There are people who quit during training and later regret their decision,” says an Army Lieutenant.

How to Join the Army

One can join the Indian Army by being admitted in one of two commissions: the Permanent Commission or the Short Service Commission. The following are the ways of entering the Permanent Commission:

National Defence Academy (NDA)

Boys between the ages of 16 and a half and 19 who have completed class 12 can take the entrance exam (conducted by UPSC) to join the National Defence Academy, Pune. Selected candidates will have to clear a five-day interview process and a medical exam. If you successfully go through these stages, you will be admitted to the NDA where you will go through three years of training. At the NDA, you will receive a graduation degree, professional training as well as the opportunity to expand your interests by participating in activities such as golf, aero-modelling, astronomy, etc. After completing your NDA training, you will be sent for pre-commission training to the IMA (Indian Military Academy) in Dehradun.

Indian Military Academy (Dehradun)

The IMA is a prestigious institution that provides training in various aspects of combat, tactics and technologies. After successfully completing training at the IMA, one is commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Indian Army. There are different ways you can enter the IMA:
1. Candidates between the ages of 19 and 24 who have completed their graduation (or are in their final year) can enter the IMA by clearing Combined Defence Services Exam (CDSE), followed by the Service Selection Board (SSB) interview and a medical exam.
2. Male students who have completed class 12 with physics, chemistry and mathematics with 70 per cent marks are eligible to apply. The duration of training is one year at the IMA and four years at Cadet Training Wings.

The Army Life

People who wish to join the Army need to be adventurous and motivated enough to make it through the training period. Army life is not about monetary perks. It is for people who value pride, honour and sacrifice. Prospective Army officers
aspire for a moment like receiving their recruitment letter with the President’s signature.
You should be ready to accept any challenges that come your way. You might be sharing a laugh with your fellow officers and in the next two minutes, you might be getting ready to fight. No one goes to as many parties as an Army person. Even if they are posted in remote locations dealing with tough situations, Army personnel always find a reason to celebrate.


Volume 2 Issue 6


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