The 73rd Raising Day of Territorial Army was celebrated across the country on 9th October 2022 to commemorate its raising by the first Governor General C Rajagopalachari on this day in 1949.
The Territorial Army (TA) of India is an auxiliary military organisation of part-time volunteers that provides support service to the Indian Army. It is composed of officers, junior commissioned officers, non-commissioned officers and other personnel holding ranks same as Indian Army, who also have civilian occupations. The role of TA is to “relieve the regular army from static duties and assist civil administration in dealing with natural calamities and maintenance of essential services” and to “provide units for regular army as and when required”.
The TA was constituted by the Territorial Army Act of 1948 in the Dominion of India as a successor to the Indian Defence Force (1917 – 1920) and Indian Territorial Force (1920 – 1948). It is commanded by a three-star ranking Director General of Territorial Army (a Lieutenant General-ranking officer deputed from Indian Army) and headed by the Chief of Defence Staff under the Department of Military Affairs of the Ministry of Defence. The TA has two units—departmental unit (PSU and Indian Railway employees, and ex-servicemen) and non-departmental unit (privately employed citizens).
The TA has participated in all wars since India’s independence, including Sino-Indian War of 1962, Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, and the Kargil War. The TA have also taken part in Operation Pawan (1987) in Sri Lanka, Operation Rakshak in Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir, Operation Rhino (1991) and Operation Bajrang (1990 – 1991) in Northeast India, and Operation Parakram in Jammu and Kashmir.