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Monday, April 8, 2013

Making of a Commando-3 | CLASS ACT: Acquiring Combat Skills for Special Mission Ops



By Anantha Krishnan M
Express News Service
Bangalore: Special mission operations are the most hazardous job for the commandos. The combat skills they acquire make the difference between life and death while operating on commando missions, behind enemy lines. The outfit will have specialists in skills like tracking, survival, demolitions, communications, medicine, surveillance, rock climbing, sky diving and deep sea diving.
The Indian Army has put some of its best men in the business to train soldiers who check into the Commando Wing (CW) in Belgaum. During their stint at CW’s facilities, the soldiers are imparted with basic skills in combat shooting, unarmed combat, rock craft, demolitions, special missions and combat first aid. These skills are the bread and butter of a commando.
Combat shooting is a very challenging, yet charming part of the training at CW. While firing skills mark the foundation for any solider, it is his expertise that graduates him into being a commando. “A student at the CW is trained in ambidextrous firing (using both hands and shoulders), firing on the move, peripheral vision firing and cover fire techniques. These disciplines of firing are essential to the survival of a commando and will help him in various combat situations,” Major R K Sharma, Instructor, CW, told Express, during a recent visit to the facilities.
In unarmed combat, a commando is trained to tackle the enemy, empty handed. “We teach martial art techniques to defend against armed and unarmed enemy. A commando is made aware of sensitive and pressure points in a human body essential to injure or kill the enemy. With the Indian borders in the North and the North-East being mountainous, we also impart training in various basic and specialised rock climbing techniques like slithering, scorpion rappelling and walk down from the falls,” said Major Sharma.
With today’s war being driven by technology, the CW has upgraded its curriculum to reckon with the best in the world, even throwing some surprises to the visiting foreign armies. The use of paint ball guns, gen-next rock climbing gadgets, remote controlled targets and cameras for room intervention are some of the training gadgets being used. Remote controlled IEDs (Improvised Explosive Devices) developed by CW for training is based on the experience gained by its instructors while on the job.
While undertaking training in special mission operations, a commando’s performance is validated against six different parameters. “He has to navigate undetected for long distances, reach the designated target, carryout surveillance before destroying it. Case studies and experiences of actual operations are shared with future commandos,” says Major Sharma. In addition, potential problem solving skills to meet unforeseen situations are also practised.
A soldier who passes out of CW would have mastered techniques not only in destroying targets and killing the enemy but also in combat first aid and survival that will help in saving lives behind the enemy lines.
(To be continued)
Copyright@The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com

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