New Delhi: In a move to counter the Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) of China employing martial arts trainers to train its military officers, Indian Army has deployed its Ghatak commandos, sources said.
According to reports in the Chinese media, at least 20 martial arts trainers have been sent to Tibet to train Chinese soldiers.
Even before the clashes on June 15 at Galwan Valley in Ladakh, China had recruited martial arts trainers from Tibet’s local clubs into their army division.
According to an army officer, a Ghatak commando undergos a specialised 43-day Commando Training Course at Belgaum in Karnataka. The training includes running for 40-kilometers non-stop with a weight of about 35 kg which strengthens them physically.
Apart from weapons training they are also trained in hand-to-hand combat. They also specialise in martial arts. Even when they are posted in a unit they are trained there too. There are different training for high altitude and desert areas.
According to an agreement between India and China signed in 1996, it was agreed that there would be no firing within a two kilometre radius of the LAC, no usage of any dangerous chemical weapons, guns, or any kind of explosives will be allowed.
An Army official said that although the unit of Ghatak commandos consists of about 22 personnel including an officer, a JCO, but almost a whole team is also kept as a backup. This way, there are 40–45 commandos in a unit at all times.
Every Infantry Officer in the Indian Army has to undergo the training and only selected soldiers are given this training. Every year, 30-40 new jawans arrive in every unit and then some of the new jawans are kept in the commando team. The soldiers who replace these deadly commando teams also remain in the unit. In this way, besides the Ghatak commando team, there are about 50 per cent soldiers in the unit who are experts in it.