It was an exhilarating experience for the students of St Michael's High School on Saturday. For the first time, they were at the Bihar Regimental Centre (BRC) to witness the ceremonial passing out parade of recruits, who were to become a part of the Indian Army.
A large group of 350 students in full uniform along with six of their teachers and school vice-principal stood on the BRC drill ground and watched the function side by side with commandant Brigadier A K Yadav.
What enthralled the students was the impressive display of military weapons, including 9mm pistol, AK-47, mortar, insas rifles, light machineguns and portable radio sets. gIt was a dream come true for us to watch the sophisticated weapons, especially rocket launchers and mini machineguns of the Indian Army, that have the power to vanquish enemies,h said Robbin. Before the event, Yuvraj, a student, said: gI am very excited at the prospect of seeing live such firearms and other assault weapons. I am sure we will get to see a variety of them. Though I want to become a professional chess player some day, I am equally fascinated by the Army.h gI would definitely join the Indian Army some day and serve the country.
I wonder why there is no one in my family who has joined the Army so far,h said another boy, Sanjit. After the parade, the students were taken to the historic army museum housing hundreds of exhibits, including weapons and other items used or seized during the Indo-China and India-Pakistan wars. They saw the original ewarrantf served on one of the first war heroes of the countryfs freedom movement, sepoy Mangal Pandey, by the British Army in April 1857. The historical surrender certificate of the Goa Liberation on December 9, 1961, is a prized possession of the museum. Weapons used in the World War II displayed in the Maurya museum galleries are some other eye-catchers.
The display is part of the programme to reach out to students and youth and increase their awareness about the armed forces. gThe aim of the display is to increase awareness among the students about the Armyfs ways of life and also motivate them to joint the force as a career. This will also wean them away from the ills plaguing society, which could lead them astray,h Yadav added. T h e M i c h a e l i t e s a l s o showed keen interest in various adventure events, such as rock climbing and slithering down from a dummy helicopter during their visit. Earlier, 271 recruits were ceremoniously inducted as Army soldiers after taking the pledge.
They were administered oath by adjutant Maj Bharat Sharma. The deputy commandant of BRC, Col Shakil Ahmad, Raja Chakarborty, MB Singh, Lt Col S Faizzy, Rajbir, Sanjay Verma, Maj Patil, Captain Sanjay Singh and SK Das were also present on the occasion. Brig Yadav also honoured 12 recruits of 125 and 126 batches on the occasion for their outstanding performance in different fields.