Chennai: The chief of Army staff, General Bipin Rawat inaugurated the ”Young Leaders Training Wing” at the Officers Training Academy here yesterday.
Broadly aimed at supporting enhancement of the strength of officers in the Army, the YLTA envisages recommendation of soldiers as commissioned officers in the Army through a structured programme, according to a defence official.
Addressing the first batch of 200 trainees and the YLTA faculty, the Army chief underscored the importance of development of leadership traits, character, communication and soft skills, analytical ability and rational decision making skills for all junior leaders and soldiers aspiring to be officers in the Army.
Rawat said in many armies, a youth has to join as a soldier to become an officer. ‘He first trains as a soldier, then works in his unit. And then those soldiers, if found capable, are given opportunities to become officers,’ he said.
The Indian army has a different method as it was a successor to the British army. ”…the British Army had the system where the officer selection was from a different format and that of the soldier from a different format,” he said.
But in today’s situation, many soldiers enlisted in the army out of some compulsion like the domestic situation when those in his family felt a need for an employment at the earliest.
”The soldier may very well be capable of becoming officer but joins as a soldier,” he said.
Against this background, the YLTW was inaugurated to provide an opportunity to aspirants to become officers by honing their leadership skills, according to the official.
Emphasising on leadership qualities and the courage to take bold actions, and decisions under very challenging conditions, Rawat said, ”future battlefields will be affected by cyber warfare and in such an environment you need leaders at all levels who are capable of taking decisions.”
In war there is no runner-up and only the winner is adored and there is either the winner or the loser, he pointed out.
”And if you want success, you need to have the right kind of leadership,” he said.
The chief of Army Staff presented the YLTW banner to Lieutenant General Sanjeev Kanal, Commandant, OTA.
He also presented the mission statement of the wing to Major General A Arun, Deputy commandant and chief instructor, OTA.
General Rawat commended the establishment of the wing by OTA in a record time of just four months.
Lieutenant General P C Thimmaya, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Army Training Command, presented the Operating Manual of the newly raised YLTW.