Indian Armed Forces Academies

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Indian Armed Forces Academies

Postby shek » 09 Feb 2005 19:59

Indian Armed Forces Academies: NDA, IMA, OTA, NA & AFA

A lot has been discussed on the men and machines of the Armed Forces. This is dedicated to the institutions that churn out young boys and girls into able officers who lead men into battle.
This thread is for all those ‘cradles of leadership’ that mould and make one of the world’s finest officers vis-à-vis the various Academies of the Armed Forces: National Defence Academy, Indian Military Academy, Officer’s Training Academy, Naval Academy and Air Force Academy.

This thread also includes discussions on Armed Forces feeder institutions like the National Cadet Corps, RIMC, Military Schools and Sainik Schools and any info redgarding various entries of joining the Armed Forces in the officer cadre, UPSC exams, SSB interviews NCC 'C' Certificate etc.
Please pour in with questions, information, trivia and the likes!!
Last edited by shek on 13 Feb 2005 20:35, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby Rishi » 09 Feb 2005 20:17


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Postby shek » 09 Feb 2005 20:30

Any info on the proposed increament of strength and training period of the OTA?

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cds supplementry???

Postby shek » 10 Feb 2005 11:37

For all those CDS aspirants out there, CDS II 2004 written results were on on 3rd Jan, day before yesterday ie. 8th Feb, CDS II 2004 (SUPPLEMENTRY) results were out.
Any idea what these 'supplementry' results are? When i checked the UPSC site, the candidates who cleared it had the option of IMA, NA and AFA but not OTA.
One of my friends who did not make it in the main exam has cleared the 'supplementry' exam for IMA!!!

a penny for your thoughts people... :-?

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Postby Anoop » 10 Feb 2005 17:53

Shek,

Thanks for the information on the OTA on another thread. It piqued my interest and I looked up their official website and found that Maj. Sonam Wangchuk (Added later : Maj. Wangchuk, Maj. Acharya and Capt. Nongrum are listed both on the IMA and the OTA in Roll of Honor section. Surely they can't be alumni of both academies :?: ) of Kargil fame and Brig. Kuldip Chandpuri of Longewala fame were alumni, not to mention Maj. Parameswaran of IPKF.

Some questions still remain - (i) How many of the entrants to OTA (and for that matter to the IMA) are NOT graduates of the NDA?

(2) Since the course for Technical Arms and Services has been discontinued at OTA from 1982, which academy trains officers for the EME, Signals (Added later: see below), Army Aviation Corps and CADA? Is it now done as part of the regular curriculum at IMA and OTA?

Thanks in advance.

Added later: The officers in the EME and Signals probably are trained here: http://www.indianarmy.nic.in/arimamain.htm

Candidates selected for 10+2 Technical entry scheme are inducted for one years' Basic Military Training at IMA. This is followed by a four years' degree course in Engineering from College of Military Engineering, Pune / Military College of Telecommunication Engineering, Mhow / Military College of Electronics and Mechanical Engineering, Secunderabad. The total duration of training is five years. On completion of four years of training, commission in the rank of a Lieutenant is granted. For a degree in Engineering, there is a need to complete the stipulated five years of training.

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Postby shek » 10 Feb 2005 20:31

Hey Anoop,
Thanks for bringing into notice the inclusion of Maj. Wangchuk, Maj. Acharya and Capt. Nongrum as part of the IMA Roll of Honour. As far as I know the above mentioned officers are alumini of the OTA and they must be in the IMA roll just as a general roll specifying their deeds at Kargil representing the Army as a whole. Anyway, I’ll confirm on that.
Late Maj. Parmeshwaran or ‘parry’ to my dad were very close friends. My dad often told me about the love ‘parry sir’ had for the academy.
To answer your first question, the Combined Defence Services Exam is held for Armed Forces aspirants to join the IMA, OTA, NA and AFA after college graduation. ALL NDA graduates join the IMA straight after passing out from NDA. NDA guys don’t go to the OTA. The OTA takes around 400 male and 100 female candidates annually. This strength is going to be doubled soon.
The strength of college graduates (called Direct Entry Cadets) into IMA every year through CDS exam is around 500 annually, around 250 per term. The NDA cadets and Direct Entry cadets train and pass out together. NDA graduates do 12months and DEs do 18 months training at the IMA.
Secondly, officers do pass out into technical arms through the OTA. It has two divisions with reference to cadets, i.e. Non-Technical (NT) and Technical Cadets. Basic training is given to both at OTA. After passing out the Tech cadets go on for further specialized training to their respective training establishments.
Below is an example of the number of vacancies reserved for each arm/service for cadets of the OTA. The following vacancies were allotted for the SSC*(NT)-78th Course, SSC(Tech)-21st Course and WSES**-24th Course of the OTA:

SSC(NT)-78th Course:
Armd Corps- 16
Fd Arty- 52
ADA- 06
Infantry- 129
Mech Inf- 10
ASC- 07
AOC- 04
Intel- 01
JAG- 01

SSC(Tech)-21st Course:
Engrs- 14
Sigs- 20
EME- 11

WSES-24th Course:
ADA- 09
Engrs- 15
Sigs- 06
ASC- 13
AOC- 12
EME- 10
Intel- 03
AEC- 03
JAG- 04

*Short Service Commission
**Women Special Entry Scheme

Note: a) Training at the IMA and OTA is basic army officer training. Army Aviation can only be opted after one joins his parent unit and completes at least a minimum of 3yrs. It is now proposed for women to join the Army Aviation Corps.
b) The MCEME, MCTE and CME are not academies but training establishments. Candidates who are selected for 10+2 Tech Entry first join the IMA then do their basic 4yrs at their respective establishments mentioned above and go back to the IMA itself for their passing out. Though this is a technical entry scheme, not all who pass out through this entry join technical arms, there are many seats kept for fighting arms for those who don’t come in the merit in the academy.

Hope I cleared your doubts; do feel free to ask if you have more.
God Speed,
Ben a.k.a. shek

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Postby ssmitra » 11 Feb 2005 00:26

I have a question for the peoplle here regarding the time graph of officers in the army
what is the course of training they go through?
I am aware of the NDA-IMA etc but more like
after IMA what happens. Do they train with their respective regiments/battalions... when do they go for the junior leaders commando course, if they do when do they apply for special forces etc.. para, NSG etc, at what time do they go for CIJWS or pravat ghatak school or HAWS training etc..

also what about the Jawans. what is their time line in the army.

I have gone through the BR site and its been informative about what these different schools and units are but not about when does it happens in the career timeline of a office/jawan

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Postby Rakesh » 11 Feb 2005 03:58

Shek: Please email me. Thanks.

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Postby Anoop » 11 Feb 2005 04:34

The career graph of an IA officer (courtesy RayC):

1. On commissioning the officer is a Lt.

2. After a brief stint in the unit, he does the Young Officers Course.

3. Thereafter he stays in the unit. Between that time to about 6 years of service (this can vary), the officer does other courses.

4. If the officer’s Annual Confidential Reports (ACRs) are good, he can in this 3 to 6 yrs service span slot get posted as an ADC, Grade 3 Staff Appointment (GSO3, Staff Capt etc) or as an Instructor (if he has an AXI grading in any of the courses he has done).

5. In the 7 to 18 years (again variable depending upon the slots for promotion being available) and the promotion policy of the AHQ, he goes through the tank of Capt, Maj and Lt Col.

6. He also does many more courses including the only competitive exam the Defence Service Staff College exam and can go to Staff / Instructional in the Grade 2 slot ie Major. Eg DQ, BM etc.

7. Those who don’t qualify for a berth to the Staff College Course having failed the three mandatory chances normally can kiss a bright future goodbye! Though there are cases who have got good ACRs but have not made it to the Staff Courses doing well also. This is rare.

8. Lt Col is normally a Second in Command. He can also be posted as a Grade 1 Staff appointment.

9. If selected by the Promotion Board (slots being vacancy based; in some courses there are brilliant lot and so they miss the boat. Three chances are there for promotion to any rank from Lt Col to Col, Col to Brig and so on up the ladder).

10. When selected for Colonel, the officer gets command of a unit. Ticket punching period is two years. Many do more.

11. Thereafter he goes on staff and so rolls the career bandwagon.
Last edited by Anoop on 13 Feb 2005 20:57, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Anoop » 11 Feb 2005 04:36

Shek, thanks for the clarifications. If your father served with the late Maj. Parameswaran, you may be interested in getting in touch with RayC on this forum, if you haven't already done so.

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Postby Shishir » 11 Feb 2005 05:07

Anoop,
Thanks for the interesting information. Couple of questions...

2. After a brief stint in the unit, he does the Young Officers Course.
Is this mandatory for all officers? Broadly speaking, what courses are mandatory and what are optional?

3. Thereafter he stays in the unit. Between that time to about 6 years of service (this can vary), the officer does other courses.

4. If the officer’s Annual Confidential Reports (ACRs) are good, he can in this 1 to 6 yrs service span slot get posted as an ADC, Grade 3 Staff Appointment (GSO3, Staff Capt etc) or as an Instructor (if he has an AXI grading in any of the courses he has done).

5. In the 7 to 18 years (again variable depending upon the slots for promotion being available) and the promotion policy of the AHQ, he goes through the tank of Capt, Maj and Lt Col.

- I am assuming that this track is before the govt accepted the 'Ajai Vikram Singh Committee' report. In this regard, what changes can be expected in the above career graph? Is it reasonable to expect that an officer can attain the rank of Col. by the age of 40? :shock:
- Will the number of courses that an officer has to go through change in this case? IOW since the officer is getting promoted at a faster pace, will he have less time to complete the required courses?

Eg DQ, BM etc.
DQ?BM?

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Postby shek » 11 Feb 2005 05:50

Rakesh wrote:Shek: Please email me. Thanks.

Hi Rakesh, what id do i mail you on?

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Postby Rakesh » 11 Feb 2005 06:17

koshyr AT hotmail DOT com

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Postby Anoop » 11 Feb 2005 07:58

Shishir,

The Brig. is the best person to answer your questions, although I do believe this is the old career graph.

BM, I believe stands for Brigade Major.

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Postby shek » 11 Feb 2005 17:17

shishir wrote:Is this mandatory for all officers? Broadly speaking, what courses are mandatory and what are optional?


Shishir, It is mandatory for all YOs to do the YO course. In fact it is the grading in this course that more or less determines your future. All Infantry YOs do their course at Infantry School, Mhow. Armoured YOs at School of Armoured Warfare, Ahmednagar and Mechanised Infantry YOs at both the places. The Commando course at the Junior Leaders Wing, Belgaum is mandatory for all Infantry and Mech YOs. Vacancies are alloted to other arms.

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An Open Letter To Cadets

Postby shek » 13 Feb 2005 17:09

Guys pls tell me how to upload pics/documents from the comp on the thread....

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Question - hope it's not out of context

Postby Manav » 13 Feb 2005 18:23

I keep reading that the RAW recruits both from the UPSC and the 'outside'. My question is this - Can someone (anyone) apply to the RAW like folks do for the CIA? For the CIA - if one is interested, go the their website and apply - they also visit various universities during the recruitment fairs etc... But how does it work for the RAW? What is the application process? What are they looking for? Any basic qualifications? Etc....

I apologise in advance if my question is off-topic here...but I figured 'Intel' would be a part of the thread...!

Thanks,

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Postby Adi » 13 Feb 2005 18:42

Manav: to avoid posting sensitive information on this thread, I have posted my answer in the link below that may be of interest to you:

(caution: sensitive information - do not access unless you are manav):

http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/phpBB2/vi ... 6935#86935

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Postby Manav » 13 Feb 2005 18:48

Adi wrote:Manav: to avoid posting sensitive information on this thread, I have posted an answer to your question that may be of interest to you:

(caution: sensitive information - do not access unless you are manav):

http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/phpBB2/vi ... 6935#86935


Adi...thanks! But that still leaves my question unanswered...or perhaps am I asking the wrong question!

Regards,

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CDSE I 2005 Written, Feb 13th '05

Postby shek » 13 Feb 2005 19:13

Today was CDSE I 2005. Did 'ok' type. not that great. Though the English was certainly tougher than last time. GK was not so 'general' and maths was the same old story...'eeny meeny myna moe'!! Guys if any one of you have solved any of the papers, please do post it on this thread. Though i'm not into 'post-mortems' after exams, just wanted to know how i faired in my fluke department, esp in maths.

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OTA as an option to join the army: "Serve With Honour&a

Postby shek » 13 Feb 2005 19:28

This is taken out from another thread in response to a question posed by a member of the forum. I thought this would be very appropriate to post it on this thread.
This basically is to clear all the misconceptions and doubts of the general public about the OTA.

1) The OTA is one of the finest and toughest Academies in the world that trains officers of the highest quality. Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army! Here is an interesting fact, the max no of MVC (nations second highest gallantry award) awardees during Kargil were all from the OTA!!
2) There is 100% absorption of officers from OTA for permanent commission after 5 years. The only exception would be if the officer has not performed well in courses and is under check on disciplinary grounds.
3) Officers who decide for permanent commission (PrC) after 5 yrs wont have the option to quit until after 14yrs only. Meaning that those officers who opted for Prc and want to quit can quit only after 14yrs and those officers who don’t want to quit can continue without applying for Prc again as they already are permanent officers.
4) The present ratio of regular officers (IMA) to that of SS officers (OTA) is 7:3. In the very near future it has been approved that the strength of OTA is to be almost doubled therefore making the ratio 5:5.
5) There is NO difference between an IMA officer and an OTA officer professionally. Promotions are given solely on merit, Annual Confidential Reports and Grading in courses. In fact ex-OTA officers have been the max approved to the rank of Brigadier by the board early this year.
6) With ref to seniority, an OTA officer passes out 3 months earlier than his IMA counterpart therefore gaining that period of seniority. The training in both the academies is exactly the same but it is tougher in OTA as training period is 12 months in the grueling heat of Chennai compared to 18 months in IMA.

As of now, OTA seems a more attractive option compared to IMA as it promises permanent commission and a choice to leave also and not to mention the lesser training period without loss of seniority.

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Re: CDSE I 2005 Written, Feb 13th '05

Postby Rishi » 13 Feb 2005 19:49

shek wrote:Today was CDSE I 2005. Did 'ok' type. not that great. Though the English was certainly tougher than last time. GK was not so 'general' and maths was the same old story...'eeny meeny myna moe'!! Guys if any one of you have solved any of the papers, please do post it on this thread. Though i'm not into 'post-mortems' after exams, just wanted to know how i faired in my fluke department, esp in maths.


Hey.. so did I!

English was elementary, GK was phuckall (unless you actually mugged what Alla-u-ddin Wotzhisname did in yr ancient-time-hundred-n-58 :-?

Maths was fun. No one i believe attempted all 100, but a bit of MCQ chankiangiri went a long way.

Ya know the phunny part.. in Eng and GK, there were 120 questions, and all were equal marks, and each paper was 100 marks. Therefore, according my madrassa math, each question was worth ~0.87 marks :-?

Holy gaumata... what is UPSC upto?

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Postby shek » 13 Feb 2005 20:13

Hey rishi! you couldn't have explained the paper better!! Ya! the paper was sure 'fun'! but don't tell me you left out questions in maths??? I mean thoda to tukka mar deta...my paper was totally tukka. I think tukkas is soon gonna replace the law of permutations and combinations.
Anyway, on a more serious note...yaar, you mean to say most, if not all officers in the forces have studied all this or are they in using the time tested tradition of tukaoing?? I mean, the present system of written selection is totally absurd. One can understand it for NDA as candidates are fresh from school and the subjects are not new to them, but what about graduates like us?? I mean, what has a BSc guy to do with Iltutmish or for that matter Lee Hsien Loong or an Arts fellow with Xerophthalmia!!!??? The UPSC has to seriously review the writtens.

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Postby Rishi » 13 Feb 2005 20:31

deleted double post
Last edited by Rishi on 13 Feb 2005 20:38, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby RayC » 13 Feb 2005 20:35

Anoop,

for 1 to 6 years, it would be better to say 3 to 6.

Parmeshwaran is from my unit and before that he was in 5 MAHAR.

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Postby Rishi » 13 Feb 2005 20:37

shek wrote:Hey rishi! you couldn't have explained the paper better!! Ya! the paper was sure 'fun'! but don't tell me you left out questions in maths??? I mean thoda to tukka mar deta...my paper was totally tukka. I think tukkas is soon gonna replace the law of permutations and combinations.
Anyway, on a more serious note...yaar, you mean to say most, if not all officers in the forces have studied all this or are they in using the time tested tradition of tukaoing?? I mean, the present system of written selection is totally absurd. One can understand it for NDA as candidates are fresh from school and the subjects are not new to them, but what about graduates like us?? I mean, what has a BSc guy to do with Iltutmish or for that matter Lee Hsien Loong or an Arts fellow with Xerophthalmia!!!??? The UPSC has to seriously review the writtens.


Ya man... tukka-marofying-giri goes without saying.:oops: :P What i meant was, not many ppl "solved" a whole lot of the math questions.
And agree with the sad standard of the CDS paper. Maybe they should have a 2-stage filter like UPSC does for the civils, with essay type in round-2, but then the forces, presently, dont seem in much of a position to be choosy.

But it was good to see a nice turnout of wannabe faujis at the centre..

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Postby shek » 13 Feb 2005 20:40

rishi wrote:
shek wrote:Hey rishi! you couldn't have explained the paper better!! Ya! the paper was sure 'fun'! but don't tell me you left out questions in maths??? I mean thoda to tukka mar deta...my paper was totally tukka. I think tukkas is soon gonna replace the law of permutations and combinations.
Anyway, on a more serious note...yaar, you mean to say most, if not all officers in the forces have studied all this or are they in using the time tested tradition of tukaoing?? I mean, the present system of written selection is totally absurd. One can understand it for NDA as candidates are fresh from school and the subjects are not new to them, but what about graduates like us?? I mean, what has a BSc guy to do with Iltutmish or for that matter Lee Hsien Loong or an Arts fellow with Xerophthalmia!!!??? The UPSC has to seriously review the writtens.


Ya man... tukka-marofying-giri goes without saying.:oops: :P What i meant was, not many ppl "solved" a whole lot of the math questions.
And agree with the sad standard of the CDS paper. Maybe they should have a 2-stage filter like UPSC does for the civils, with essay type in round-2, but then the forces, presently, dont seem in much of a position to choose.

But it was good to see a nice turnout of wannabe faujis at the centre..


Rishi, what are you graduating in? What was your choice of preference? As in, IMA, NA, AFA and OTA. Did you write last september's CDS? Any idea on what the CDS "SUPPLEMENTRY" is all about?

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Postby Rishi » 13 Feb 2005 21:08

check mail shek. your sify a/c

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Postby Guru » 14 Feb 2005 00:14

X Posted

Quote:
shek wrote:Don’t worry, its just not you, many people do not have the right info on joining the Forces.



Quote:
2) Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army! Here is an interesting fact, the max no of MVC (nations second highest gallantry award) awardees during Kargil were all from the OTA!!



I have not understood what exactly you mean by "Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army!" . Surely IMA is also passing out cadets who are joining the Army.

Statistics for MVC winners being most from OTA would be helpful. Likewise with the PVCs. This would be most helpful too.

Quote:
3) There is 100% absorption of officers from OTA for permanent commission after 5 years. The only exception would be if the officer has not performed well in courses and is under check on disciplinary grounds.


Would the Annual Performance Reports count? Don't they have to go through the SSB again? Has it been discontinued? When?

Quote:
5) The present ratio of regular officers (IMA) to that of SS officers (OTA) is 7:3. In the very near future it has been approved that the strength of OTA is to be almost doubled therefore making the ratio 5:5.


If it is going to 5:5, then why have SS officers? They should be all Permanent Commissioned. If 100% absorption is guaranteed, as you have said, then all being commissioned Premanent makes sense.
After all, nobody joins just to have a 5 year toughening up tenure extending to 14 years! 14 years just to toughen up is hell an ordeal.

Quote:
6) In fact ex-OTA officers have been the max approved to the rank of Brigadier by the board early this year.



Statistics does help since this is nice to hear.

Quote:
7) With ref to seniority, an OTA officer passes out 3months senior to his IMA counterpart. The training in both the academies is exactly the same but it is tougher in OTA as training period is 12 months in the grueling heat of Chennai compared to 18 months in IMA.



Don't the OTA officers lose the difference in the training time on being made Permanent? Or don't they? BTW, don't forget Dehra Dun winter is awful too. I am told it is very chilly and when it snows in Mussourie, it is hell. So say my friends.

Quote:
Cool As of now, OTA seems a more attractive option compared to IMA as it promises permanent commission and a choice to leave also and not to mention the lesser training period without loss of seniority.


No loss of seniority? Then it must be crazies who join through IMA. They hang around extra time in the IMA with every chance of injury and then chuckked out while in the OTA, they spend less time and so the probability of getting chuckked out due to injury during training is less.

It would be foolish to waste time in IMA to wear the pips, when there is the chance to spend less time to do so in the OTA.

I haven't understood this.

Do kindly explain so that I am clear.

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Postby shek » 14 Feb 2005 22:00

Guru wrote:X Posted

Quote:
shek wrote:Don’t worry, its just not you, many people do not have the right info on joining the Forces.



Quote:
2) Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army! Here is an interesting fact, the max no of MVC (nations second highest gallantry award) awardees during Kargil were all from the OTA!!



I have not understood what exactly you mean by "Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army!" . Surely IMA is also passing out cadets who are joining the Army.

Statistics for MVC winners being most from OTA would be helpful. Likewise with the PVCs. This would be most helpful too.

Quote:
3) There is 100% absorption of officers from OTA for permanent commission after 5 years. The only exception would be if the officer has not performed well in courses and is under check on disciplinary grounds.


Would the Annual Performance Reports count? Don't they have to go through the SSB again? Has it been discontinued? When?

Quote:
5) The present ratio of regular officers (IMA) to that of SS officers (OTA) is 7:3. In the very near future it has been approved that the strength of OTA is to be almost doubled therefore making the ratio 5:5.


If it is going to 5:5, then why have SS officers? They should be all Permanent Commissioned. If 100% absorption is guaranteed, as you have said, then all being commissioned Premanent makes sense.
After all, nobody joins just to have a 5 year toughening up tenure extending to 14 years! 14 years just to toughen up is hell an ordeal.

Quote:
6) In fact ex-OTA officers have been the max approved to the rank of Brigadier by the board early this year.



Statistics does help since this is nice to hear.

Quote:
7) With ref to seniority, an OTA officer passes out 3months senior to his IMA counterpart. The training in both the academies is exactly the same but it is tougher in OTA as training period is 12 months in the grueling heat of Chennai compared to 18 months in IMA.



Don't the OTA officers lose the difference in the training time on being made Permanent? Or don't they? BTW, don't forget Dehra Dun winter is awful too. I am told it is very chilly and when it snows in Mussourie, it is hell. So say my friends.

Quote:
Cool As of now, OTA seems a more attractive option compared to IMA as it promises permanent commission and a choice to leave also and not to mention the lesser training period without loss of seniority.


No loss of seniority? Then it must be crazies who join through IMA. They hang around extra time in the IMA with every chance of injury and then chuckked out while in the OTA, they spend less time and so the probability of getting chuckked out due to injury during training is less.

It would be foolish to waste time in IMA to wear the pips, when there is the chance to spend less time to do so in the OTA.

I haven't understood this.

Do kindly explain so that I am clear.


Guru,
What I meant by "Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army!" was that the quality of trg in OTA is very high because after all they are trg Gentlemen/Lady cadets of a professional army like ours! People who are ill informed think that just because OTA trains cadets for SSC and since the training period is just 11 months, it is not ‘professional’ enough.

Secondly, ACRs are only for officers who have completed 8yrs of service and above. Officers below 8yrs of service are assessed on UAC or Unit (not very sure if it’s ‘Unit’) Assessment Card. This is so because, Officers having less than 8rs of service are so involved in various courses etc that they are hardly present in their parent units. Therefore their Cos cannot asses them ON ACRs which are very detailed reports. UACs come in the form of a card which mention the courses and grading of the officer along with the pen picture. For SS officers to opt for PrC, the Co has to first consider him fit on the basis of performance in courses and his own judgment and accordingly ‘approve’ him for Prc. This has been the procedure since the past 10yrs now.
I don’t agree with your views regarding the extension of service. This is one of the few advantages of the OTA, if an officer does not decide to leave after 5yrs and wants to continue a little more, he can leave after 14yrs and if he changes his mind again he can continue! Remember, 100% absorption is guaranteed IF ONLY his performance in courses is good and if his CO approves of him being fit enough for PrC.

Regarding loss of seniority compared to the trg period in IMA, true it is there. But now it won’t matter much firstly because of the Bhagga commission officers will reach the rank of Lt Col and promotion thereafter is based on merit and the board takes into account the officers commissioned in a year as a whole and not separate courses belonging to separate academies and secondly because in the near future the trg period of the OTA is going to be extended to 15 months.

About OTA being a tougher place to train, it is widely accepted by both ex-NDAs and ex-IMAs!. No doubt it gets real cold in Dehradun, I can vouch for it, stayed there 5 years!!, but the training period is spread evenly over 18 months in IMA. For OTA, the same training is to be done in 11 months in Madras!! In fact Direct Entry cadet trg used to be originally 2 yrs!, one and a half yrs for ex-NDA and NCC entry cadets and during that time, a 2yr officer trg course in IMA used to be done in just 9 months in the OTA!!, now you tell me, isn’t that tough enough??

And lastly, people are not ‘crazy’ to join the IMA. You must remember that IMA has history and great traditions, OTA is comparatively newer. Most officers in the top brass are from IMA and the highest rank an ex-OTA officer has reached is that of a Maj Gen. This is not because they are not good enough but because age catches up with them. If you notice the avg age of an OTA cadet is more than that of a cadet from IMA. That’s why people have doubts when it comes to joining OTA because they doubt the promotional aspects etc. People who want to join the army as a permanent commissioned officer would obviously choose the IMA to the OTA because who can guarantee you doing well in courses or for that matter If your CO just dislikes you from the very beginning, you’ve had it!!
I hope I’ve cleared your doubts…

PS: There are more chances of a person being injured in a place with shorter duration of trg as it is intense than in a place with the same trg and longer duration!

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Postby Guru » 14 Feb 2005 23:51

shek wrote:
What I meant by "Remember, after all, officers passing out from OTA are joining the Indian Army!" was that the quality of trg in OTA is very high because after all they are trg Gentlemen/Lady cadets of a professional army like ours! People who are ill informed think that just because OTA trains cadets for SSC and since the training period is just 11 months, it is not ‘professional’ enough.


An NDA cadet has to 3 +1 years of training.
And IMA 18 months.
OTA 11 months.

Correct me if I am wrong.

Don't you think training does make a person more proffessional? Why I am asking is that there is a lot of media attention and other attention about the lowering of standards etc. I believe this decline came in after the EC. Therefore, there seems to be a connection between training being short. I belive the EC commission became officers in 6 months!

Secondly, ACRs are only for officers who have completed 8yrs of service and above. Officers below 8yrs of service are assessed on UAC or Unit (not very sure if it’s ‘Unit’) Assessment Card. This is so because, Officers having less than 8rs of service are so involved in various courses etc that they are hardly present in their parent units. Therefore their Cos cannot asses them ON ACRs which are very detailed reports. UACs come in the form of a card which mention the courses and grading of the officer along with the pen picture. For SS officers to opt for PrC, the Co has to first consider him fit on the basis of performance in courses and his own judgment and accordingly ‘approve’ him for Prc. This has been the procedure since the past 10yrs now.


ACRs are also the COs 'Own Judgement' . Therefore call it UAC or ACR they appear to be the same thing since after all everything is on that CO. And all this can be very subjective! I am told that only the point system is not there.i.e. the gradation for character and demonstrted qualities.

I don’t agree with your views regarding the extension of service. This is one of the few advantages of the OTA, if an officer does not decide to leave after 5yrs and wants to continue a little more, he can leave after 14yrs and if he changes his mind again he can continue! Remember, 100% absorption is guaranteed IF ONLY his performance in courses is good and if his CO approves of him being fit enough for PrC.


No SSBs?

Regarding loss of seniority compared to the trg period in IMA, true it is there. But now it won’t matter much firstly because of the Bhagga commission officers will reach the rank of Lt Col and promotion thereafter is based on merit and the board takes into account the officers commissioned in a year as a whole and not separate courses belonging to separate academies and secondly because in the near future the trg period of the OTA is going to be extended to 15 months.


True, one year batche maybe considered, but then one IC number makes a difference. JJ Singh and KKD Prasad become the Chief was all because of the IC No! Theefore, loss of seniority has to matter for those with less training.

About OTA being a tougher place to train, it is widely accepted by both ex-NDAs and ex-IMAs!. No doubt it gets real cold in Dehradun, I can vouch for it, stayed there 5 years!!, but the training period is spread evenly over 18 months in IMA. For OTA, the same training is to be done in 11 months in Madras!! In fact Direct Entry cadet trg used to be originally 2 yrs!, one and a half yrs for ex-NDA and NCC entry cadets and during that time, a 2yr officer trg course in IMA used to be done in just 9 months in the OTA!!, now you tell me, isn’t that tough enough??


Many subjects ar just taken out of the curriculum. Therefore, theis again comes back to the question of 'professionalism' and overall grooming of a cadet. A day has 24 hours only and a year 365 days. You can't compress that. So, if there is an 'ideal' curriculum for training a cadet, it cannot be compressed. Yet, many subjects that are not 'core' (maybe critical in the overall grooming) are obviously dropped. Therefoe, this does not cut ice. I hae a friend who is ex PIMC, ex NDA who is a big dad in OTA. He says that it is not the real McCoy but it is acceptable and the boys can be groomed at the unit. Now that is the sad part. If the CO where the Cadet goes is not keen, then the cadet will just sail ruddrless.

And lastly, people are not ‘crazy’ to join the IMA. You must remember that IMA has history and great traditions, OTA is comparatively newer. Most officers in the top brass are from IMA and the highest rank an ex-OTA officer has reached is that of a Maj Gen. This is not because they are not good enough but because age catches up with them. If you notice the avg age of an OTA cadet is more than that of a cadet from IMA. That’s why people have doubts when it comes to joining OTA because they doubt the promotional aspects etc. People who want to join the army as a permanent commissioned officer would obviously choose the IMA to the OTA because who can guarantee you doing well in courses or for that matter If your CO just dislikes you from the very beginning, you’ve had it!!
I hope I’ve cleared your doubts…


No one is saying that the OTA cadet is not good. It all dependents on the individual and the grooming in the unit. But the way you ahd written sort of suggested that it was better to go through OTA than IMA.

PS: There are more chances of a person being injured in a place with shorter duration of trg as it is intense than in a place with the same trg and longer duration!


Not really. Your statement is hyperbole, if you don't mind. Remember Peter's Principle. I hope I got it right. What will happen will happen or words to that effect.

Personally, it matters not from which institution one graduates from. It is how one imbibes the customs and tradition of the Army and how he executes the same.

The Honour Safety of Your Country.............

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Postby shek » 15 Feb 2005 16:02

Guru, technically it will be wrong to say that ex-NDAs have 3+1 training to become officers. The main ‘service training’ begins only in the 6th term. I can confidently say that an NCC cadet with an an 'A' grade in his 'C' cert with atleast the RD Camp under his belt can equally match an ex-NDA. Why do you think that the training period of both; ex-NDAs and NCC entrants were the same years back until the NCC entry moved to the OTA and trg period in IMA became one and half yrs fro DEs. When an ex-NDA joins the IMA, he is definitely much better (professionally) than a Direct Entry cadet, but when they pass out together, they are all the same!...it is the grading in courses that differentiates two officers. About your statement that the standards have been ‘lowered’ after the EC, I must say that you have made a really silly and stupid statement. Why have an Academy at all in the first place if it produces officers that lower standards??? Many EC officers have done very well in the army. An example being Brig Israr Khan, VrC (Retd) who commanded a unit very successfully in Blue Star. Guru please don’t make statements like that. Secondly, I’m a mascom student specializing in Journalism and i know how the media deals with the Services. Sometimes they can be real brash.
Anyway, UACs and ACRs may ‘appear’ to be the same but there is a stark difference. ACRs are based on a detailed 22 item report on which the officer is given points by the CO. When a YO joins the unit he is so busy with courses that he is hardly ever present in the unit for the CO to judge him well enough to be reported on an ACR!
I agree with your point regarding the seniority with regards IC No. But you must remember selection of Chiefs is taken at a very high level and it is just not the IC No that matters.
Regarding subjects being ‘taken’ out in the OTA, it just doesn’t happen that way. Remember, once again, this academy is training officers for the Indian Army, these officers once commissioned have match their ex-NDA and ex-IMA counterparts step by step. Tell me Guru, Maj Parry won the PVC, does that make him less professional when you compare him with legends like Capt MK Pandey and Capt Batra? To make their training more intensive a lot of club activity is cut off in OTA. Compared to the IMA, the club activities though many are restricted in OTA.
Grooming is a very very important aspect in the unit. For that matter EVERY YO, I repeat EVERY YO needs grooming and there is very less if not no possibility of the CO not being ‘keen’, because after all, he is not the Commanding Officer by accident. It is the moral responsibility of the CO to groom HIS officers. ALL YOs look up to their first COs as their father figure.
Lastly Guru, when I said that it is better as of now that OTA seems a more attractive option compared to IMA is for those people who are still hesitant to join as a permanent commissioned in the Army and for those who qualify in their CDS for OTA and all NCC entrants. Ever since I was a kid, I wanted to pass out of the famed IMA. For me no other institution came even close! Later when I went to NDA, I stood there spell bound! I was like…â€

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Postby RayC » 15 Feb 2005 17:12

First of all, I will state that how the Academy product is groomed in the unit is the criticality of being a good or a bad officer. Training helps, but it is not the last word.

That apart.

The NDA service subjects start in the 4th term and not as stated in the 6th term. Therefore, it is 1and a half years of service subjects. They do three camps and military training taught is honed here too.

When I was in the IMA as a cadet, there were chaps with NCC certs, I wouldn’t say they were comparable.

That all EC chaps were bad, would be generalizing, but then obviously a chap from Harrow or Eton compared to someone from a grammar school, both going in to get their knighthood, there would be the difference.

Definitely the standards have gone low in the Army. It would be a delusionary to brush it under the carpet. The recent events of Raj Kapoors in uniform, or the Heinz experts or the Shaw Wallace peddlers are awfully embarrassing. If that is not a sign of slow degradation, I wonder what is. Only a brain bereft would turn the Nelson’s eye.

In so far as the media is concerned, they are doing their job. The way they do it is their prerogative. If they are brash, it is all the more reason for the army to be above board and professional. One should ask for no quarters and also give none. Surely, one should not cringe because they are there. Regarding the officer in Blue Star, one swallow does not make a summer but then it doesn't also mean that this officer did not do a commendable job either.

The UAC and the ACR are the same thing in so far as assessment is concerned. It was rationalised because it was decided not to overburden the youngster with the ACR syndrome and let them instead develop. I rather not go into the rationale or the pros and cons. The bottom line is that the CO is the last word, in a manner of speaking.

The IC No is critical. Wherever it is vacancy based and the officers are neck and neck, it is this that ruins or makes careers.

In the British times (I say this with some authority since my father was also in the Army 1942 onwards) it was bad manners to ask a gallantry award winner as to why and how he got that award. The reason was simple. I would leave the rationale pregnantly poised since I presume you all are mature enough to realise. All I will say is respect the award winner but don’t deify him.

Club activities are not done in training time. There is merit in the argument that less training time does affect the overall product. It is like a custom built Rolls compared to a mass produced Ford T. Of course, this example is stretching it a bit too much, but the underlining ethos must be understood.

Grooming is very important. These club activities, riding, sports, dramatics, and heaven knows what all, makes the personality whole. Take something out and there is a deficiency. It must be granted to those who wrote out the curriculum that they knew what they were doing.

As far as COs grooming the YOs or even the new recruits, I am afraid there is a vast gap between desire and doing. Possibly, the CO is too harried and busy. When I joined the unit, I had to stay in the barracks for two weeks or so and had to follow the curriculum of the troops. No orderly and no help. Ok. I was not detailed to cut grass but during working or fatigue, I had to do manual work that the troops did. Then I also had to fill up the paybooks and do the troops documentation that the clerk does. This was to teach me the life of a trooper as also an important aspect of welfare i.e. uptodate documentation of the troops so that they get their due. That is not being done any more. They are all ‘hafsars’ from day 1 except in some (very few units) and that too what is know as ‘khana bharo’ (filling the slot).

In so far as comd appts go, those who are conversant would know of the phenomenon called ‘time slotting’ ie. Stay in the command slot for the minimum period mandatory and ensure that there have been no flaps during the command. Again, this differs from officer to officer in command and thereafter.

If people are hesitant to join the Army and join OTA as a last resort to a respectable career, I think that is indeed a sad commentary on the officer class. Regrettably it is true. Even in the NDA, we found that many just joined cadets quit during the summer term. This was not so in the winter term. This was because, they joined and as soon as the other competitive exam results came, they quit to join the other profession.

Let me assure you that the killer instinct, josh and hosh and all these superlative hoohah is concerned, it is no less in the NDA and IMA than the OTA. If Madras summer is mercilessly, Dehra Dun winter freezes the brain and the limbs. These are mere selling points. I have served in the South, in the deserts and in the High Altuitude and the jungles of Mizoram. It is as awful as you wish to make it or as beautiful as you wish to perceive.

Lastly, I have served a very long tenure in the Army and still I don’t think I know everything about the Army. Therefore, my request is that don’t go overboard in the praise or criticism. Just take a balanced view and back it with real facts and not perceived ones. Many are keen to know of the army and half baked stuff when taken as authority can create a wrong impression.

With JOSH, Have HOSH.
Last edited by RayC on 17 Feb 2005 02:47, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby shek » 15 Feb 2005 18:55

Good going sir! Sir, are you ex-NDA? If so which sqdrn and course?
Sir, i was going through the History section of the OTA site and found this:

"NDA Wing at OTS

A highlight of the year 1975-76 was the opening of the NDA Wing at the OTS to train the overflow of successful NDA candidates for a Three Year Degree Course. An Experts Committee of Jawahar Lal Nehru University visited to assess the suitability of the campus for running the course. Hectic activity preceded the induction of 55 Regular Course into the OTS to build up necessary infrastructure in conformity with the requirements laid down by JNU Expert Committee. This additional task was carried out till July 1977."
(Link: http://indianarmy.nic.in/arotahistorymain.htm)

I didn't understand? If you have any info on this can you please explain?

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Postby RayC » 17 Feb 2005 02:41

The link didn't open.

During the EC days, training for them (6 months) was done at Ghorpuri. This was called OTS.

It was decided that the first and second termers would be segregated and kept at the OTS. They came to K'Vasla in the 3rd term.

I think there was this end of term flap where a cadet passing out died owing to the ritual where that day onwards till passing out, the 6th termers became the 'juniormost' and run errands and take some ragging. This was just supposed to be good fun and letting the juniors also have their day. It was so in my times.

So, another example of moral degradation and lowering of standards I presume. When I was a battalion commander, things were worse. I tried and got it on to some semblance of decency. Heard of 'bathroom sessions' Don't worry, nothing lewd; But mass punishment for no good reason. Most stupidest of things. If punishments are given for the sake of punishment just for sadist pleasure of the seniors, I am afraid you don't produce officers, you produce sub humans who having learnt it, practise it when their time comes. The cycle of sadism and moral degradation increases and each eyear a newer and more base version appears!

Why Sqn? Which year/ course? Why?

What is your father's name? He wants to know?

Mohenjodaro is my pet name.

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Postby shek » 17 Feb 2005 17:36

Thanks for the info sir. No, not that dad wanted it, just for my info. Dad is a DE, 55 Reg and bro 102/Delta.

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Postby RayC » 17 Feb 2005 20:40

Christ! So many course have passed out?

Let's say I am a little bit junior to Arun Prakash. We are from the same Sqn.
It is not material actually.

But thanks for giving me a great feeling that people are interested in me! Honestly.

I wish your Father and Brother the best of luck and please given them my regards. Just say Rayc.

If you ask me, DE is the best entry.

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OTA Madras - Any one with some info???

Postby Mekala » 17 Feb 2005 22:24

OTA Madras Alumni Association - Any one with some info???

I have learnt that the OTA Madras alumni association has been formed and lists of alumni coursewise have been published.

Any info on contacts, email, website, telephones etc to make contact with the association office and any info as to how a copy of the alumni list (possibly with the current address of each!!) could be obtained???

Pl throw some light.

Srini-M

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Postby shek » 18 Feb 2005 22:53

Latest input from NDA, The Comdt has instructed that from the next POP onwards (108th), rifles for cadets and swords for appointees will not be on parade! The POP will be a without arms drill!! Pity the guys...it's gonna be tough.
Mekala, try this link: http://indianarmy.nic.in/arotapubmain.htm
I think the OTA Alumni publication is called "Camaraderie".

I've got two questions;
1) Can a cadet who has been withdrawn from the NDA after being relegated twice due to academic reasons apply for CDS entry? As in, will the SSB recommend him?
2) If a GC from the IMA leaves the Academy after a month or so after paying the cost of trg till that period due to some reason, the next time he clears his CDSE and is called for SSB or when he applies for NCC Spl Entry Scheme and gets call for SSB, will the board recommended him? As in, is it allowed?

This may seem pretty silly, but there are people with such cases...

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Postby RayC » 19 Feb 2005 01:38

When I was in the NDA, it was POP without arms.

Looked quite neat. Both arms swinging.

Thank heavens, no one has got the idea still of POP on horses!

Who is the current Comdt and Deputy Commdt, NDA?

KK Khanna JAT Regt has gone to IMA, I believe.


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