(Last Updated on : 06/08/2011)
The Indian Paramilitary Forces are agencies that provide support to the operations of other Indian Law Enforcement Agencies and the Indian Army
. Apart from the valiant efforts of Indian soldiers to protect the nation; the security and integrity of India, especially relating to border securities and internal matters, are being dealt by these courageous men. They work in other security forces, falling under the Ministry of Home Affairs or the Ministry of Defence. They are integrated to Indian Armed Forces
acting as Armed Forces Auxiliaries. There are a huge number of Paramilitary Forces with an extensive variety of roles. The diverse forces broadly follow the role of Gendarmerie and carry out Counter-Insurgency or Anti-Terrorist Missions. The Paramilitary Forces of India is regarded as the world`s largest and most powerful among other paramilitary forces.
Various Indian Paramilitary Forces are discussed as follows-
Presently, there are 50,000 personnel in 46 battalions under the commandment of a Lieutenant General. Its achievements are quite significant. It was formerly formed as Cachar Levy. During British rule in the year 1835, it was formed as a Paramilitary Police Force of 750 men to safeguard colonies against various upsurges like tribal raids etc. In the year 1870, these forces combined into three Assam
Military Police Battalions. A fourth battalion was formed 1915 in Imphal
. During the World War I, Assam Military Police troopers were part of the Indian forces that fought for Britain in Europe and Middle East. The name Assam Rifles was assigned in 1917 as recognition of their part in the war. During the World War II, the Assam Rifles helped manage the influx of refugees coming from Burma fleeing the Japanese advance in 1942.
Between the end of World War II and Indian independence, the Assam Rifles constituted five battalions that were one part of the Civil Police under the Assam Inspector General of Police. After independence, the Indian government assigned the Assam Rifles its own Director General. In October 1962, the Assam Rifles were the frontline troops in the beginning of the Chinese-Indian War. The Assam Rifles also maintained their peacekeeping roles in the Northern India in the face of tribal unrest and insurgency. The Assam Rifles also look after the medical assistances, help in basic education, assist in rebuilding, agricultural activities and maintains communications in remote areas.
The Rashtriya Rifles is a Counter-Insurgency Force in India. In the year 1990, General B C Joshi raised it specially to fight insurgency in Kashmir
and also to work hand-in-hand the local security forces in the area. The major role of the formation is to allow the Indian Army to ensure its primary task of defending the borders and the states territory unhindered by action from Pakistani-backed terrorists and guerrillas. The Rashtriya Rifles itself comprises 62 Battalions, with another 30 formed using regular army battalions. Presently there are 68,200 personnel.
Defence Security Corps
Defence Security Corps were earlier known as Defence Department Constabulary Centre, and was established in April 25th 1947 at Mathura
, Uttar Pradesh
. They generally offer protective services to the Defence Ministry sites and look after the security of various Defence Installations. Currently, there are 32,000 personnel in the Defence Security Corps.
Border Security Force
The Border Security Force (BSF), established on December 1, 1965, is responsible for guarding India`s land borders during peacetime and preventing trans-border crimes. It is a Central paramilitary force operating under the Union Ministry of Home Affairs. Presently there are 215,000 personnel and 186 Battalions.
Central Industrial Security Force
Central Industrial Security Force was established in its current form on June 15, 1983. Currently, there are 165,000 personnel working in 132 Battalions around the country.
Central Reserve Police Force
Presently there are around 400,000 personnel in 210 battalions in India. The CRPF`s primary role lies in assisting the State/Union Territories in Police operations to maintain law and order and contain insurgency. It came into existence as the Crown Representative`s Police on July 27, 1939. After Indian Independence, it became the Central Reserve Police Force on enactment of the CRPF Act on December 28, 1949.
Rapid Action Force
A 10 battalion semi-independent part of the CRPF trained to respond to sectarian violence. The Rapid Action Force is the Anti-Riot Police of the Indian Union.
Indo-Tibetan Border Police
The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), established on 24th October, 1962, is an Indian paramilitary force that was conceived for the security of the Indian border along the Tibet Autonomous Region of China, which is spread across 2115 km. presently there are 60,500 personnel working in 55 Battalions.
Other important Paramilitary forces in India are Railway Protection Force, Civil Defence, Indian Home Guard, Special Security Bureau, National Security Guards (7500 personnel), Special Protection Group (3000 personnel). The functioning of Paramilitary forces in India is significant thus ensuring the safety and security of the whole nation.