5 Armoured Regiment
The 5 Armoured Regiment was raised at Jodhpur on December 1, 1983, and later at Patiala. The regiment since 2002 has been the cutting edge of the mechanised operations in conducting counter-insurgency and counter-terrorist operations, strike operations and many more. The T-90 Main Battle Tanks have been inducted into the Indian Army. The induction of T-90 tanks was expected to increase the strike capability of the Indian Army. The 5 Armored Regiment is the first regiment of the Indian Army to be equipped with the T-90 main battle tank.
Patiala has the proud distinction of having one of the most prestigious army formation. The Indian 1 Armoured Division is part of II Corps and is headquartered at Patiala. It is part of the Indian Army's Western Command. Patiala is relatively a young city of royal heritage and rich tradition. Founded in 1764 by Baba Ala Singh, a soldier par excellence on an ancient mound, "PRASTHALA", frequently referred to in the Mahabharta epic, Patiala has since then acquired a place of eminence in political, social, religious, music and fine arts, cultural, academic and military spheres. It was Maharaja Bhupinder Singh (1900-1938) who gave Patiala State a prominent place on the political map of India. Maharajah Bhupinder Singh was one of the best known Indian Maharajahs during the 20th century. He came to the throne at the age of eight in 1900. There are many stories about his extraordinary wealth and the unique class that made him distinct from all the other Indian Maharajahs. He was a regular visitor in Eurpoe and would buy the contents of stores in minutes. He was well known in London and he usually stayed at the Savoy where he would book th whole of the 2nd floor. He would be driven in a motorcade of 20 Rolls Royce cars. Later at the time of Indian independence his son Yadvindera Singh took a patriotic lead by signing the instrument of accession facilitating the process of national integration.
The Indian Army has been augmenting its amphibious capabilities for long. One of the most advanced amphibious warships of the Indian Navy, the INS Shardul, was affiliated to the 5 Armoured Regiment of the Indian Army in 2008. Loaded with state-of-the-art equipment, INS Shardul is an amphibious warship capable of transporting personnel and accomplishing all objectives of beaching operations. The 5 Armoured Regiment holds some of the most potent and advanced tanks in the world. Since 2002, the regiment has been at the cutting edge of the mechanised operations.
On 03 October 2008 INS Shardul, one of the most advanced amphibious units in the inventory of Navy, got affiliated to the 5 Armoured Regiment, the most advanced tank regiment of Indian Army operating the finest and the most lethal tanks T-90 of modern era, in a glittering ceremony onboard INS Shardul docked in Mumbai Naval Harbour. Shardul has the Royal Bengal tiger as its symbol. Built by GRSE, Kolkata, Shardul boasts of state-of-the-art equipment. Rear Admiral Anil Chopra, Flag Officer Commanding Western Fleet and Maj Gen GS Malhi, Colonel of the 5 Armoured Regiment signed the Charter of Affiliation along with Cdr Shailendra Singh, Commanding Officer of INS Shardul and Col RK Magotra, Commandant of the 5 Armoured Regiment.
The Armed Forces have the tradition of the affiliating their units for the better camaraderie and esprit de corps. Though the armed forces have a long tradition of 'affiliating' their units, the modern military trend of all three services - army, navy and air force - fighting wars jointly has added an operational aspect to the tradition. The modern trend of all the three Services fighting wars jointly has added an operational aspect to the tradition. Shardul is an important amphibious warship capable of transporting various kinds of combat equipment, personnel and accomplish all objectives of landing, that is, beaching operations. The 5 Armoured Regiment proudly wears the mantle of holding one of the most potent tanks in the world.
Welcoming the gathering of the retired and present officers of the Army and Navy, Rear Admiral Chopra said the affiliation of the 5 Armoured and Shardul would further promote the understanding of mutual operational needs of the two Services crucial for most modern complex warfare in the times ahead.
The three-day silver jubilee celebrations of the 5 Armoured Regiment began on 01 April 2008 with an impressive free-fall para jump by a special force unit followed by a dog show and a cycle polo match somewhere in the Western Sector today. The events were followed by the Regimental Barakhana, a statement issued here said. A Pagal Gymkhana and dinner at the Commandant's residence were held. The ceremonial turning out of the Quarter Guard, wreath laying at the Regimental War Memorial, Sainik Sammelan, Commandant's lunch and the silver jubilee dinner were also organised. Maj Gen G.S. Malhi, Colonel of the regiment, hosted a dinner for all serving and retired officers along with their family members at his residence on April 5. Earlier, a goodwill mission was undertaken by a team of six junior commissioned officers and 65 troops to all parts of the country with the aim of interacting with retired soldiers of the regiment.
The silver jubilee celebrations of the 5 Armoured Regiment continued at Patiala on 04 April 2008 with a service at the Regimental Religious Institute where all present paid obeisance to Lord Almighty for having bestowed his benevolence on the Regiment. This was followed by the inspection of the Quarter Guard by the Colonel of the Regiment, Maj Gen GS Malhi. Later, Gen Malhi paid his tributes to the martyrs of the Regiment who had laid down their lives in the service of the nation. Other serving and retired officers and JCOs of the Regiment also paid their homage by laying wreaths at the Regiment Memorial. A ceremonial Sainik Sammelan was also held on the occasion which was addressed by previous Colonels of the Regiment, Lt Gen M Mayadas, Lt Gen MS Shergill and the present Colonel of the Regiment, Maj Gen Malhi. Nearly 100 serving and retired officers and 300 ex-servicemen with their families participated in the celebrations.
While contributing to the overall military effort of conducting counter insurgency and counter terrorist operations, officers and men of this unit have been awarded one Vishist Sewa Medal, one Shaurya Chakra, three Sena Medals, three Chief of Army Staff Commendation Cards and one GOC-in-C Commendation Card till date. Awards for devotion to duty garnered by the Regiment include one Chief of Army Staff Commendation Card, one Vice Chief of Army Staff Commendation Card and eleven GOC-in-C Commendation Cards.
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