Sachin Pilot to join Territorial Army - The New Indian Express

Sachin Pilot to join Territorial Army

Published: 06th September 2012 09:25 AM

Last Updated: 06th September 2012 09:25 AM

Union Minister for Communications and IT Sachin Pilot will be commissioned as Lieutenant into the Territorial Army (TA) on Thursday.

The 35-year-old Congress MP from Rajasthan will join the ranks of K P Singh Deo and Manvendra Singh, who donned the olive green in the Territorial Army earlier. Pilot will be accorded the rank on Thursday at a ceremony in south block. He had successfully cleared the preliminary examination and Service Selection Board interview.

“The ‘young Turk’ will be joining the regular TA, which means that he will have to undergo seven months of rigorous training and annually serve 36 days with the TA,” a senior Indian Army officer said.

He will be joining 124 Infantry Battalion of Sikh Regiment, a unit raised on urban concept, so the minister will have to annually report for duty  for 36 days and that too in the weekends. But before this he will have to undergo training at Deolali in Maharashtra and Indian Military Academy, Dehradun.

While the US, the UK and Canada has examples of politicians and their kith and kin serving in the Armed Forces and laying down their lives in wars, Indian Parliamentarians do not have any military tradition.

In such a scenario Pilot’s step would herald a new beginning that would motivate the young guns experience the pride of soldiering. Only men in the age group of 18 to 42 can join the TA.

Deo, former Information and Broadcasting Minister, had joined the 144 Air Defence unit of TA in 1971.

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