Army Day is celebrated annually on January 15th in India to commemorate the day when General (later Field Marshal) K. M. Cariappa took over as the first Indian Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army in 1949. This day is an occasion to pay tribute to the brave soldiers of the Indian Armed Forces who dedicate their lives to protect our nation’s borders and keep us safe. It is a day to honor their courage, selflessness, and sacrifices, and to remember those who have given their lives for the country. In this article, we’ll explore the history and significance of Army Day in India and learn about the various traditions and celebrations that take place on this day.
About the Army Day
The Global Fire Power Index 2017 reported that India’s army is considered to be the 4th strongest in the world. The ones ahead of it include China, Russia, and the USA. Meanwhile, India’s neighboring country, Pakistan, ranked 13th in the list.
The Indian Army originated from the East India company which later became known as the British Indian Army. The term then became the National Army after the country gained its independence. The Army was founded on April 1, 1895. However, the Indian Army Day does not celebrate this founding date since it is celebrated on the 15th of January.
During this special day of celebration, the Army Command headquarters organize various army parades which include military shows. The brave fighters are given salute because they have sacrificed their time and effort protecting the motherland.
Specifically, a parade is held at the Cariappa Parade Ground of the Delhi Cantonment. The Indian Army Chief takes salute.
Army Day History
After being a slave of the British Empire for almost 200 years, India gained its independence on August 1, 1947. However, even at the time when the country gained its independence, they suffered from communal riots and the influx of refugees from Pakistan. On the other hand, some Indians were also migrating towards Pakistan.
These problems resulted in various administrative problems. The army then came forward to control the situation and ensure peace. British General Francis Butcher handed the full control of the country towards the Indians. The first ever Indian Army Chief was Field Marshal K.M. Cariappa. He was given such title on January 15, 1949.
To commemorate this event, the Indian Army Day was founded so as to celebrate such grand activity every year.
As mentioned above the Indian Army Day is always celebrated on the 15th of January each year. This means that the upcoming Indian Army Day will be held on January 15,
Why Celebrate Army Day
The following are the main reasons why you should participate in the celebration of the Indian Army Day:
To Pay Homage and Salute to All Indian Soldiers
The Indian Soldiers have dedicated their lives protecting the country. Some of them have lost their lives in order to make sure that peace will ensue in the motherland. To pay homage to these fallen soldiers as well as those who remain standing, you should take part in the celebration of the Army Day.
To Encourage People to Join the Army
Another good reason to join this event is that this is the best opportunity to encourage or motivate people to join the army. Some people are hesitant to join the army because they are afraid of doing so. They do not realize that a person who joins the army is someone considered to be a hero for the country.
For the Country
Also a good reason to join this celebrate is that this is the best time to reassure your allegiance to the country. Indian soldiers are always ready to fight whenever a tough battle comes. They man the Indian borders at all times. They are also prepared should a disaster arrives. They have gone rigorous training to make sure that they can overcome whatever kind of difficulty or challenge they may face.
Celebration Ideas and Activities
The following are the best things to do to make your celebration of the Army Day as best as it can be:
One good activity you can do for this day is to join parades. These parades show honor to the army. You can be a part of the voice that expresses gratitude to all the Indian soldiers. You can shout out to them that you are thankful for their continued service for the safety of the country.
Watch the Showcase of Indian Army Power
You can also celebrate this day by watching the showcase of Indian Army Power. More often than not, the Indian Army shows off their capabilities and skills to the people. They show their different equipment and modes of transportation so that the people will become aware of how these mighty soldiers protect the country.
Celebrate on Social Media
You can also take your celebration of this day on social media. You can, for instance, use the hashtag #ArmyDay to let your friends and followers know that you are also participating in the celebration of this important day.
Army Day Interesting Facts
- The Indian Army is the second largest standing army in the world.
- Indian Army has about 1,129,900 active troops and 960,000 reserve troops.
- Indian Army functions at the Siachen Glacier which is about 5000 meters above sea level. The glacier is regarded as the highest battlefield in the world.
- The Indian army has a horsed cavalry regiment and this regiment is among the last three such regiments in the world.
- Sepoy Kamal Ram of Royal Indian Army was the youngest Indian to receive the Victoria Cross for his valor in World War II at the age of nineteen.
- Assam Rifles which was formed in the year 1835 is the oldest paramilitary force in India.
- The High Altitude Warfare School (HAWS) from Indian Army is often regarded as one of the elitist military training centers in the world. Even the US Special Forces were trained at HAWS before their deployment during the invasion of Afghanistan.
- In December 1971, the Battle of Longewala was fought by the countries of India and Pakistan. This battle is considered historical because it involves only 120 Indian soldiers and a jeep with a M40 recoilless rifle. They were able to stand their ground against 2000 Pakistani soldiers. While the Indian soldiers held their ground all through the night, help from the Air Force came only in the morning.
Army Day Quotes
- The soldier is the Army. No army is better than its soldiers. The Soldier is also a citizen. The highest obligation and privilege of citizenship is that of bearing arms for one’s country.
- Better to die fighting for freedom than be a prisoner all the days of your life.
- Lord, bid war’s trumpet cease; Fold the whole earth in peace.
- Who kept the faith and fought the fight; The glory theirs, the duty ours.
- Real security lies in the prevention of war–and today that hope can come only through adequate preparedness.
Army Day Messages and Greetings
- The Indian Army Day always reminds us of all our heroes who stand strong to keep us safe. Happy Indian Army Day!
- Let us celebrate Indian Army Day by saluting all the Army men for their bravery, dedication and patriotism. Happy Indian Army Day.
- Warriors are not born, they are made in the Indian army. Happy Indian Army Day.
- Born to fight, trained to kill, prepared to die, but never will. Happy Indian Army Day.
- Let us come together to celebrate National Army Day to honor our brave soldiers who are the reason behind our pride, our smiles…. Happy Indian Army Day.
- Today we are breathing freely just because we live in a free country. Happy Indian Army Day!
- India is a golden bird and play is its new wing. Happy Indian Army Day !
- Unite and live together in the future to maintain independence. Happy Army Day!