The Indian Army Day is celebrated on January 15 every year to mark the contributions made by the soldiers and the sacrifices done to protect the country and the lives of the citizens. As part of the Indian Army Day celebrations, Gallantry Awards and Sena Medals are also presented to the soldiers. This year, in 2021, India is celebrating its 74th Army Day.
Indian Army Day is observed across the nation with several programmes including parades and other military shows. Although celebrations take place across India, the main parade of Army Day is held in Cariappa Parade Ground at Delhi Cantonment. As part of the main parade in Cariappa Ground, military hardware, numerous contingents and combats are displayed. Last year, Captain Tania Shergill command the Army Day parade. She also became the first female officer to do so.
Indian Army Day: History
Army Day is celebrated to mark the important moment when Lieutenant General KM Carriappa took over as commander-in-chief of the Indian Army from General Francis Butcher, the last British commander-in-chief of India in 1949.
Kodandera ‘Kipper’ Madappa Carriappa, popularly known as KM Carriappa, was the first Indian post-Independent Commander-in-Chief. During the Indo-Pakistani War in 1947, KM Carriappa led the nation on the Western Front. He is one of the two recipients of the title of Field Marshal of India. The other holder of the title of Field Marshall is Sam Manekshaw.
Cariappa hailing from Karnataka was one of the first two Indians who were selected for training at the Imperial Defence College, Camberley, United Kingdom. KM Cariappa served as the commander of the Indian Army’s Eastern and Western Commands before taking over as the Indian Army’s Commander-in-Chief.