Indian Armed Forces

Facts related to Indian Armed Forces

The Government of India is responsible for ensuring the defence of India and national defence rests with the Cabinet, discharged through the Ministry of Defence, which provides the policy framework of the Armed Forces. The Supreme Command of the Indian Armed Forces vests in the President.

Components of Indian Armed Forces:

The Indian Armed Forces comprise of three divisions –

  • Indian Army,
  • Indian Navy,
  • Indian Air Force.

Indian Army:

Indian army is the largest standing army in the world having  Total Active Personnel – 1,450,000
 Combat Tanks – 4614
 Armoured Fighting Vehicles – 6704
 Self-propelled artillery – 100
 Towed Artillery – 7414
 Rocket Projectors – 29.

  • The Indian Army became operational after the Country gained independence from British colonialism.
  • The motto of the Indian Army is “Service before Self”.
  • Headquarter – New Delhi
  • The Indian Army functions under the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), who is responsible for the command, control, and administration as a whole.
  • The Army is divided into:
    6 operational commands (field armies) and
    1 training command.
  • Each works under the command of a Lieutenant General, who has an equal status to the Vice-Chief of Army Staff (VCOAS). Each Lieutenant works under the control of Army HQ in New Delhi.
  • The Army day is celebrated on January 15th every year commemorating the taking over of the position of Commander in chief of the Indian army by field Marshal Kodandera M. Cariappa from General Francis Roy Bucher in 1949.

Major exercises of the Indian Army:

  • Operation Brasstacks (1986): It was launched by the Indian Army to simulate a full-scale war on India’s western border.
  • Exercise Nomadic Elephant: The army has been conducting training exercises with the Mongolian army since 2004.
  • Exercise Yudh Abhyas: The Yudh Abhyas is a joint exercise is an ongoing series between the Indian and United States armies, since 2005.
  • Exercise Shakti: The Shakti is the joint exercises between the Indian and French armies, since 2011,

Indian Navy

 India’s total Naval Assets – 295 vessels
 Aircraft Carriers – 3 (1 in service)
 Frigates – 14
 Destroyers – 11
 Corvettes – 23
 Submarines -15
 Patrol Craft – 139
 Mine Warfare Vessels – 6.

  • Indian Navy is a blue-water navy that operates in the Persian Gulf region, the Horn of Africa to the Strait of Malacca.
  • Motto is “Sham no Varunah”, which means “may the god of water, Varuna is protecting us”.
  • The foundation of the modern Indian Navy was laid in the 17th century when the East India Company had established a maritime force. Gradually, it led to establishment of the Royal Indian Navy in 1934.
  • Headquarters - New Delhi
  • Indian Navy functions under the command of the Chief of the naval staff – an Admiral.
  • Commands of Indian Navy:
  • The Indian navy is deployed under three area commands, each headed by a flag officer. These are:
    1. The Western Naval Command headquartered in Bombay on the Arabian Sea;
    2. The Southern Naval Command in Kochi (Cochin), in Kerala, also on the Arabian Sea; and
    3. The Eastern Naval Command in Vishakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, on the Bay of Bengal.
  • The Indian Navy Day is celebrated on December 4 every year to remember Operation Trident.

Projects of Indian Navy:

• Project 15B:
The Project 15B class of guided-missile destroyers, an improved variant of the Kolkata-class destroyers, are being built by Mazagon Dock Limited (MDL) for the Indian Navy.
• Project 75:
(P75) involves the acquisition of six ships of the Kalvari-class diesel-electric attack submarines. The submarines have been ordered by the Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) for the Indian Navy.
• Project 75I (India):
The Project 75 (India)-class submarines, are a planned class of diesel-electric submarines, which are to be built for the Indian Navy. The P-75I class is a follow-on of the P-75 class submarines of the Indian Navy.
• Indian Navy’s 30 year Plan:
The 30-year submarine-building plan was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Security, in June 1999, which included the construction of 24 conventional submarines indigenously by 2030.

Indian Air force

 India’s Total Aircraft strength – 2210
 Fighter Aircraft – 676
 Attack Aircraft – 809
 Trainer Aircrafts – 323
 Total Helicopter strengths – 666
 Attack helicopters – 16
 Transporters – 857

• Indian Air Force is the fourth largest in the world after the USA, China, and Russia.
• Motto- ‘Touch the sky with Glory’
• Headquarters- New Delhi
• The last decade of the twentieth century saw a phenomenal change in the structure of the Indian Air Force with induction of women into the Air Force for short service commissions. It was also a time when the Air Force undertook some of the most perilous operations ever undertaken.
• The Indian Air Force established on 8th October 1932.
• IAF was initially established as an auxiliary air force unit of the Royal Air Force of Britain. In the honor of India’s aviation service during world war II, title ‘Royal’ was given to the air force.
• The name Royal Air force was kept until India had dominion status. After independence, India became republic and the prefix Royal was removed.
• The President of India is the supreme commander of Commander-in-chief of the IAF.
• The operational command of the Air Force is the Chief of Air Staff, an air chief marshal, who is a four-star officer.
• Every year 8th October is celebrated as Air Force day to commemorate the day of its establishment in 1932.

Significant operations of IAF:

• Operation Meghdoot: On April 13, 1984, to regain control of the heights commanding the Siachen glacier, the Indian Army, Indian Air Force, and paramilitary troops launched "Operation Meghdoot".
• Operation Vijay (1961)
• The Second Kashmir War (1965)
• The Bangladesh Liberation War (1971)
• Operation Poomalai (1987)
• Operation Cactus (1988)
• The Kargil War (1999)
• The Balakot Airstrike (2019)
• The India-Pakistan standoff of 2019
• IAF took part in relief operations during natural calamities such as Gujarat cyclone in 1998, the tsunami in 2004, etc.

Components of Air Defence:

1. Long Range interception: Indian Ballistic Missile Defence Programme
2. Intermediate Interception: S-400 Triumph (future induction)
3. Short Range interception: Akash Air Defense System and Similar Systems
4. Very Short-range interception: MANPADS and Anti- Aircraft Guns.

India’s Nuclear Missile Capabilities

 Total Nuclear Weapons – 130
 Minimum Tactical Missile Range – 150 km
 Farthest strike distance Tested successfully –
 5000-8000 km – Agni V
 Surya Missiles: Range upto 16000 km under development.

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