As the security forces battle to secure an Indian Air Force (IAF) base in Pathankot entered into the fifth day today, we bring to you the list of top 7 commando forces working round the clock to ensure 125 crore people of India live peacefully. View more at #Hindustan360.
National Security Guard
The National Security Guard (NSG) is an Indian special forces unit under the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). The NSG was established in the wake of 1984 Operation Blue Star, and the high collateral damage to Golden Temple, and civilian and military collateral casualties. Since its raising the NSG has been used in the Punjab in 1986, and Jammu and Kashmir. The NSG personnel are often referred to in the media as Black Cats because of the black dress and black cat insignia worn on their uniform.
- The National Security Guard (NSG) was set up in 1984.
- NSG commandos are tasked for all facets of counter-terrorism operations, including counter-hijacking tasks on land, sea and air, bomb disposal, post-blast investigation and hostage-rescue operation.
- As a specialized counter terrorism force, it is intended for use only in exceptional situations.
- The force does not constitute under collective nomenclature such as Central Armed Police Forces or Paramilitary Forces of India.
- It is a unique combination of personnel on deputation from Indian Army and Central Armed Police Forces. The personnel of NSG are known as Black Cats because of the black dress and black cat signage worn on its uniform.
- Over the years its role has vastly expanded to provide personal security to influential politicians quite independent of the real threat that they face.
- NSG is headed by a DGP from the Indian Police Service. There are two components in NSG — Special Action Group whose members are picked from the Indian Army and Special Ranger Groups whose members are drawn from the Central Armed Police Forces and State Police Forces
- This makes NSG’s administration quite different from SAS, SEALs, Sayeret Matkal, other Special Forces.
Special Frontier Force
Ethnic Tibetans have been a part and parcel of the modern Indian Army for as long as it has existed. Independent formations of Tibetan (including Ladakhi, Bön, and Sikkimese) units were to patrol and police the lands they were native to. During the time of the Great Game, the British Indian Army began to employ Tibetans as spies, intelligence agents, and even covert militia in northern India and Tibet proper.
- Special Frontier Force is a covert paramilitary special force which operates under external intelligence agency RAW and reports directly to the Cabinet Secretariat.
- It was originally raised in the aftermath of the 1962 Sino-Indian war as a special force for covert operations.
- However, it was never used for its intended role and has mainly served as an elite special operations and counter-insurgency force.
- The unit’s personnel are derived from Tibetian resistance fighters.
- It is also a dedicated mountain and jungle welfare unit.
- Based in Chakrata, Uttarakhand, the force falls under RAW and not Ministry of Defence. It is not answerable to the Parliament.
- SFF is headed by the Inspector General (IG) who works under the supervision of Director General of Security, Cabinet Secretariat.
Special Protection Guard
Special Protection Group (SPG) was formed in 1988 by an act of the Parliament for providing proximate security to the Prime Minister, former Prime Minister and members of their immediate families (wife, husband, children and parents). Personnel of the Special Protection Group are drawn from Central Armed Police Forces and Railway Protection Force, but the officers are from the IPS or officers of the RPF.
- They carry some of the most sophisticated weapons that include FN Herstal (assault rifle), Glock Pistol and FN Herstal (P90).
- The head of the force, called a Director, is appointed by the Central government. He is responsible for the command and supervision of the force.
- The director of the SPG since its inception has been an officer from the Indian Police service.
- Personnel of the SPG are drawn from Central Armed Police Forces & Railway Protection Force.
- Members of the SPG are barred by the SPG Act, 1988, from contact with the media.
Garud Commando Force
Garuds have diverse responsibilities. Besides base protection force to protect airfields and key assets in hostile environments, some advanced Garud units are trained like Army Para Commandos and the Naval MARCOS to undertake missions deep behind enemy lines. Note, that the security of IAF installations like radars, airfields and other establishments in border areas is generally performed by the Air Force Police and the Defence Security Corps (DSC).
- Garud Commando Force is the Special Forces unit of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
- It was formed in September 2004 and has a strength of approximately 2,000 personnel.
- They are specialized in airfield seizure, special reconnaissance, airborne operations, air assault, special operations combat search and rescue and counter insurgency.
- The unit derives its name from Garuda, a divine bird-like creature of Hindu Mythology.
- Presently, Garud’s are deployed in Congo as part of the UN peace keeping operations.
- The entire force is currently under the command of a Wing Commander rank officer.
- Garud trainees undergo a 72 week Basic Training course, which is the longest among all the Indian special forces but it also includes basic training.
- The total duration of training before a trainee can qualify as a fully operational Garud is around 3 years.
The commandos of Force One are trained at Maharashtra Intelligence Academy, the College of Military Engineering, Pune, and Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), in the use of sophisticated arms and explosives, known for its rapid shooting skills. While the NSG has a regional hub in Mumbai, Force One is expected to be part of the initial response to a terror strike in Mumbai.
- The special commando unit of Mumbai Police was formed after 26/11 terrorist attacks in the financial capital of India.
- The specialized team was commissioned on November 24, 2009 on SRPF Ground of suburban Goregaon, Mumbai.
- Force One commandos take 15 minutes to respond to a crisis.
- They are trained under the close guidance from Israeli special forces.
- Created along the lines of Israel’s Mossad, the commando body is tasked to protect the metropolitan city of Mumbai.
- The headquarters of the force is situated at Aarey Milk Colony at Goregaon in northwest Mumbai.
- The main aim of the forces is to remain in action in case of any terror activities in Mumbai.
- It is known for the use of specialized arms and ammunition, and rapid shooting skills.
The Parachute Regiment presently has seven Special Forces, six Airborne, two Territorial Army and one Counter-Insurgency (Rashtriya Rifles) battalions in its fold. The regiment has tried raising new battalions to augment the strength of the special forces however the task hasn’t been completed due to the tough selection phase.
- Formed on July 1, 1966, the Para Commandos are the other side of the coin of the highly trained Parachute Regiment of the Indian Army.
- They are mandated with missions such as special operations, direct action, hostage rescue, counter-terrorism, unconventional warfare, special reconnaissance, foreign internal defense, counter-proliferation, counter-insurgency, seek and destroy and personnel recovery.
- Because of its specified role, the regiment needs to be kept at optimum level of operational efficiency and physical fitness.
- Indian Army has seven units that are part of the larger parachute Regiment.
- Commandos have access to various types of infantry weapons required for particular missions.
- They are the only units in the Indian Army allowed to have tattoos on their body.
The Indian Armed Forces wanted to establish an amphibious warfare and maritime special operations force. During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, the Indian Navy supported the landing operations against the Pakistani base of Cox’s Bazar, Operation Jackpot, landing an army brigade using Polnochny class landing ships without significant resistance. Before this operation, Indian navy divers provided basic training in underwater demolition to Bengali insurgents.
- MARCOS, previously named as Marine Commando Force (MCF), is the special operations unit of the Indian Navy.
- Active since 1987, MARCOS are responsible for conducting special operations such as Amphibious warfare, Counter-terrorism, Direct action, Special reconnaissance, Unconventional warfare, hostage rescue, Personnel recovery, Asymmetric warfare, Counterproliferation.
- MARCOS are capable of undertaking operations in all types of terrain, but are specialised in maritime operations in Jammu and Kashmir through the Jhelum River and Wular Lake.
- They were also the first to respond to the 26/11 terror attacks.
- They area also capable of being para-dropped into the sea with full combat load.
- MARCOS have also been known to carry out wide variety of operations in foreign soil.