The Drill Square of Officers Training Academy wore a spectacular look with traditional military regalia and splendour on the occasion of the twelfth Passing Out Parade. 131 Gentleman Cadets of the Technical Entry Course Serial 30 who completed their basic military training from this Academy in December 2014 along with 17 Special Commission Officers of Course Serial – 39 got commissioned into the Indian Army. In addition four Foreign Gentlemen Cadets and 14 Assam Rifles Cadets also got commissioned. 95 Gentleman Cadets including five Foreign Gentlemen Cadets of Technical Entry Scheme Serial–36 proceeded to various engineering colleges of the Army to pursue their engineering degrees from Military Engineering Colleges at Secunderabad, Mhow and Pune. The Gentleman Cadets mesmerised a large gathering of military and civilian dignitaries and family members of the trainees with their suave and graceful drill movements in an impressive parade. Lieutenant General Mohammed Sharif Yaftali, Chief of General Staff, Afghan National Army was the Reviewing Officer of the parade and Lieutenant General BS Negi, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Central Commandwas the Chief Host.
The Reviewing Officer arrived at the venue in a majestic Horse Drawn Carriage escorted by smartly dressed mounted horse riders. He was received at the venue by Lieutenant General BS Negi, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Central Command and Lieutenant General VS Sreenivas, Vishisht Seva Medal and Bar, Commandant, Officers Training Academy, Gaya. The Reviewing Officer was accorded a salute by the parade followed by an impressive March Past.
The Reviewing Officer also gave away various awards to the Gentleman Cadets who had excelled in training. The prestigious Sword of Honour for best in overall performance among TES–30 Course was awarded to Wing Cadet Captain Dharmesh Kumar. Gold, Silver and Bronze medals as per Order of Merit were awarded to Wing Cadet Adjutant Sandeep Kumar, Wing Cadet Captain Dharmesh Kumar and Wing Cadet Quarter Master Shubham Sansthan Sawant respectively. The Silver Medal for standing first in the Order of Merit among the Passing out SCO course was awarded to Battalion Cadet Adjutant Dorjee Sherpa. Tithwal Company was awarded the Chief of Army Staff Banner Autumn Term 2017 for best overall performance as a company.
Later, addressing the parade, Lieutenant General Mohammed Sharif Yaftali, Chief of General Staff, Afghan National Army, congratulated the Gentleman Cadets for their excellent standard of turnout and drill. He urged the future officers to make their Nation and their Alma Mater proud by rendering selfless and honourable service. He also stressed on the virtues of military ethos and soldierly qualities which they should imbibe.
The parade culminated with the Passing Out Course stepping on the shimmering stone of the 'Antim Pag' (the 'Final Step') who were then administered the oath by the Adjutant of the Academy in presence of the Chief Guest, Chief Host, Commandant and other dignitaries. The badges of officers' rank were then placed on the shoulders of the newly commissioned officers by their parents and close relatives.
It was an experience of a lifetime for the parents of the newly commissioned officers. All of them were overwhelmed with emotional feelings and said that they were very proud of their sons. Congratulating the parents, the Reviewing officer said that they were among a few lucky parents whose sons will get the opportunity to serve in one of the noblest professions the Indian Army.
OTA, Gaya was raised on 18 July 2011 with the motto of 'Shaurya, Gyan, Sankalp' (Courage, Knowledge & Resolve). Presently, the Academy conducts training for the Technical Entry Scheme and Special Commission Officer Entries, popularly known as the TES and SCO respectively. The Cadets belonging to the former category join the Academy after completing the 10+2 schooling. The latter are selected from the rank and files of the Armed Forces. The TES entry undergo one year of Basic Military Training before proceeding to various Military Technical Institutions for engineering studies. They get commissioned on completion of three years of their technical training. Gentleman Cadets from friendly foreign countries also undergo the course. Four Foreign Gentleman Cadets have successfully completed the training.
As a prelude to the Passing Out Parade on December 9, 2017, a Multi Activity Display showcasing various aspects of military training imparted to the Gentleman Cadets, coupled with interesting and awe inspiring acts of combat skills and adventure, was staged at the Officers Training Academy, Gaya. Lieutenant General Mohammed Sharif Yaftali, Chief of General Staff, Afghan National Army, was the Chief Guest for the event. The Chief host for the event was Lieutenant General BS Negi, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Central Command. The display was witnessed by a large number of spectators, which included the parents and relatives of the Gentleman Cadets of the Passing Out Course, guests and civilian dignitaries.
One of the objectives of training at the Academy included inculcating a sense of adventure and developing physically fit and a mentally robust Officer Cadre. The display showcased wide variety of skills that the Gentleman Cadets had acquired during the course of their training.
The Chief Guest was received at the venue by Lieutenant General BS Negi, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Central Command and Lieutenant General VS Sreenivas, Vishisht Seva Medal and Bar, Commandant, Officers Training Academy, Gaya. The show started with a standing salute by three horse riders to the Chief Guest. Thereafter, various breath-taking acts were presented by the participants which included show jumping by Gentleman Cadets, Fly past by Microlight aircrafts, Gymnastics, Physical Training display, Malkhambh, Skydiving and Band Display.
The Gentleman Cadets and the various teams mesmerised the spectators with a professional display of agility and physical strength. An entertaining 'Malkhambh' Show was the show-stopper of the Multi Activity Display.
- Hasibur Rahman with Gp Capt Basantkumar B Pande