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Thread: Ghatak Platoons

  1. #1
    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    Default Ghatak Platoons

    I did recently hear about the Indian army Ghatak platoons, presumably platoons in infantry battalions with much-improved training, ambition and meant for difficult missions.

    The concept reminds me a bit of the Kommandozüge of German Cold War airborne brigades (or battalions, I'm not sure), which are now understood to be predecessors of the KSK.

    Do we have any Indians here who can shine some light on the Ghatak Platoons and their concept?
    Last edited by Fuchs; 08-28-2012 at 01:16 AM.

  2. #2
    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    Meh.

    Sometimes I misunderstand "U.S.-centric" with "anglophone" and imply some sort of connection with people in the Commonwealth as I learned to expect it of the British ...


    1.2 billion people, 1.3 million soldiers, literate in English, neighbour of Pakistan, Neighbour to the insurgencies on Nepal, Myannmar and Sri Lanka, hosting its own (Naxalite) insurgency - yet no discernible presence in the SWC forum.

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Fuchs,

    We do have one active poster 'Ray', a retired Indian Army officer and only last week another ret'd Lt. General joined, 'rwac48'.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 08-28-2012 at 10:24 PM.
    davidbfpo

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    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
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    The topic might get more notice if it were in the South Asia section.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 08-29-2012 at 08:55 AM. Reason: Noted and moved to the RFI thread
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

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    Council Member reed11b's Avatar
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    Fuchs, will you keep me up to date on what you find out. I have sometimes thought of a unit that sounds close to this concept for US Army units. I see big challenges in making something like that work though. Kinda like the SOC section of a MEU(SOC).
    Reed
    Quote Originally Posted by sapperfitz82 View Post
    This truly is the bike helmet generation.

  6. #6
    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    I have doubts about me making progress on this topic.

    Even the apparently similar Kommandozüge of our airborne (para) brigades are a mystery to me (albeit two of my trainers in basic were actually by sheer chance former Kommandozug junior NCOs!).

    Our mountain brigade(s) has/had a dedicated high altitude platoon full of men with special climbing training and afaik certification as trainers for it. Another analogy.

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    Ghataks

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ghatak_Force

    Sort of sums it up.

    Seven years ago, the government attempted a stopgap. They spent $65 million over the next four years to train and equip a commando ("Ghatak") platoon for each of its infantry battalions. The new platoons were intended to make the infantry more effective in dealing with irregulars in Kashmir and the northeast tribal areas. The Ghatak troops would be trained to perform commando type operations (raids, long range patrols), especially at night. Thus one of the things the Ghatak troops will get will be night vision equipment. There will also be more radios, probably including individual radios. There will also be additional weapons (sniper rifles, more compact assault rifles, day/night scopes) as well. The Ghatak training enabled the troops to specialize in the more dangerous aspects of dealing with irregulars, thus making duty against irregulars less unpopular with the troops. This program gave India another 12,000 commando type soldiers. In addition to the Ghatak units, $62 million was spent to equip engineers with better mine detection and clearing equipment, as well as equipment for detecting and disabling all manner of explosive devices irregular forces use in ambushes. The mines and booby traps are, as can be imagined, bad for troop morale, and this program is expected to be even more popular than the Ghatak platoons.

    The 20 man Ghatak platoons gave each battalion some shock troops, but it also increased discontent among the rest of the troops, who could now see modern equipment up close, and wonder why they didn't have it. The army also added modern equipment to units in crucial areas, like Kashmir, where soldiers fighting Islamic terrorists from Pakistan, got night vision gear and better radios to deal with the situation. But for the rest of the infantry, second best was all they could expect.

    http://www.strategypage.com/dls/arti...-3-14-2010.asp

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    Every infantry officer is supposed to go through the commando course at Belagaum after completing his infantry training at Mhow post commissioning. Best among them train further to become Ghataks. They are better equipped than their regular counterparts which currently means Tar-21 instead of Insas and B&T MP9 instead of vintage sterling in near future. They are used extensively in Kashmir.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
    Meh.

    Sometimes I misunderstand "U.S.-centric" with "anglophone" and imply some sort of connection with people in the Commonwealth as I learned to expect it of the British ...


    1.2 billion people, 1.3 million soldiers, literate in English, neighbour of Pakistan, Neighbour to the insurgencies on Nepal, Myannmar and Sri Lanka, hosting its own (Naxalite) insurgency - yet no discernible presence in the SWC forum.
    Because sadly it is not as fancy as discussing fifth generation fighters and aircraft carriers.

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