In yet another shot in the arm to India’s military firepower, the Navy, the Air Force and the Army have combined their might under the Special Operations Division. This division will comprise of elite commandos from the three defence services- MARCOS from the Indian Navy, Para Commandos from the Indian Army and the Garud Commandos from the Indian Air Force. A battalion each from all the above named commando units will come together under this division. Major General A K Dhingra is going to head this Special Operations Division. He has been named as the first General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the Special Operations Division.
By combining the might of the elite Commandos acorss the three defence forces, India will be able to boost irs firepower when it comes to carrying out surgical strikes like tactical operations and undertaking clandestine missions. According to an official, “Recruitment for tri-service special operations division is underway and soon it will have a substantial number.” The commando wings of the three military forces work separately but now the idea is to combine their might under one common pool. Under this special division, they can train together and carry out covert missions, both inside and outside the country.
The object of creating one common division is to create synergy among the elite Commandos across the three services. Sources said, “Sometimes, these kinds of operations require skills that need to be synergised from all three wings of the armed forces.” An officer said, “A special division specifically meant for these high-value operations will be better prepared in executing these operations to get better results.”
This division will work under the Integrated Defence Staff (IDS) which is responsible for ensuring synergy among the three forced and is headed by a Lieutenant General rank officer. Lt Gen Satish Dua (Retd) who was the head of the IDS till last year, said, “The concept is that all three services can come together whenever required but for that, it’s important that they train and live together. To begin with, the headquarters have to be raised comprising personnel from all three services. Once that’s done, people can begin to be posted.”
According to sources, “To begin with, it will have 150-200 personnel but the numbers will be gradually increased and the plan is to have a 2,000-strong commando triservice division. The numbers from the Army will be more than the other two services.” This is line with the recommendations of the Naresh Chandra Committee which had recommended the setting up of three commands-Cyber space and Special Operations to meet the emerging challenges of national security.