Rajnath Singh felicitates ITBP’s four-legged daredevils on 56th Raising Day | noida | Hindustan Times
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Rajnath Singh felicitates ITBP’s four-legged daredevils on 56th Raising Day

An equestrian and a sniffer dog have served alongside the forces’ men in tough conditions, sniffing out bombs and winning championships over the years

noida Updated: Oct 25, 2017 13:12 IST
Sohil Sehran
Union home minister Rajnath Singh felicitates Black Beauty, a thoroughbred, during the 56th Raising Day of the Indo Tibetan Border Police force  in Greater Noida on Tuesday.
Union home minister Rajnath Singh felicitates Black Beauty, a thoroughbred, during the 56th Raising Day of the Indo Tibetan Border Police force in Greater Noida on Tuesday. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)

Two four-legged daredevils — a Belgian Shepherd and a Thoroughbred — stole the show at the 56th Raising Day of the Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) force in Greater Noida on Tuesday.

The animals, both wrapped in ITBP flags, marched past the audience to a rising ovation before being felicitated by none other than Union home minister Rajnath Singh. Union minister Mahesh Sharma was also present at the venue.

Machhli, the Belgian Shepherd and Black Beauty, the throughbred, were led up to the stage by their handlers, where they received their awards with poise.

Machhli, a four-year-old female Belgian Shepherd, has helped in sniffing landmines in Naxal-affected areas of Chattisgarh. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)

Officials said Black Beauty had been with ITBP for nine years now. He was four-months-old when he was inducted into the force’s basic training academy in Chandigarh. Over the years, Black Beauty has brought many laurels for ITBP and has also become a national champion.

A spokesperson for ITBP said, “Black Beauty is a thoroughbred. He is an equestrian national champion and has bagged many medals. Every year we have special animal medals and this year Black Beauty and Machhli were chosen for their exceptional services.”

Machhli, a four-year-old female Belgian Shepherd, has helped in sniffing landmines in Naxal-affected areas of Chattisgarh. In 2016, Machhli was specially brought to Chhattisgarh to sniff out a landmine that had escaped detection by the force.

ITBP officials said Belgian Shepherds are generally considered excellent for detection of objects because of their heightened and sharp sense of smell. In fact, the United States is said to have used Belgian Shepherds in its hunt for Osama Bin Laden.

The two animals were ferried to the campus of ITBP’s 39th Battalion in Greater Noida, especially for the award ceremony. They will later be shifted back to their respective bases.

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On Tuesday, a contingent of canines and horses also took part in a silent parade in front of home minister Rajnath Singh and an audience, comprising of mostly of retired defence personnel and family members of ITBP men, was left spell bound at the venue.