MS Dhoni during his month-long stay completed his training with the Special Forces based in Agra in 2015 and also carried out five jumps to qualify as a paratrooper.
Former captain of the Indian cricket team MS Dhoni is proceeding to join the 106 Territorial Army (TA) Battalion (Para) from July 31-Aug 15 and will not be joining the rest of his team for the West Indies series. As Lt Col (Honorary), he will be going to Kashmir where the unit is part of Victor Force on static duty. According to sources in the Ministry of Defence (MoD), “His request was in the pipeline and has now been approved by the Army Headquarters. He will be taking on the duties of patrolling, guard and post duty, and also be staying with the troops.”
This move of Dhoni is going to create more awareness among the youth not only about the Armed forces but how they can be part of the TA. The 38-year-old former captain was awarded the honorary rank in 2011 along with Abhinav Bindra and Deepak Rao.
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Territorial Army’s 106 Infantry Battalion, is one of the two battalions that the Army has for the parachute regiment. Dhoni during his month-long stay completed his training with the Special Forces based in Agra in 2015 and also carried out five jumps to qualify as a paratrooper. His last jump was from an AN-32 transport aircraft, from a height of 12,000 ft. He also had training in firing weapons and other activities.
What is the Territorial Army?
- The TA is part of the Indian Army and is meant for those who are in civilian professions.
- For joining the TA, an individual has to be employed, whether it is self-employment or in other services.
- The main role of the TA is to help the Indian Army in carrying out static duties as well as help out the civil administration during natural disasters.
- Those with the TA are called in to help in maintaining the supply of essential services in calamity hit areas or when the security of the country is involved.
- While they hold honorary ranks, in case needed they can be attached to regular army units to be part of operations depending on the approval of the Commanding Officers (CO) of respective units.
- The last time TA was involved in active operations was in 1962, 1965 and 1971. Known as “Terriers” they have taken part in Ops Pawan in Sri Lanka, Operation Rakshak in Punjab and J&K, Operation Rhino and Operation Bajrang in the North East.