Garud Special Forces of the Indian Air Force are participating for the first time in the Republic Day parade. Squadron Leader PS Jaitawat will be leading the Garud team as part of the IAF contingent. Sqn Ldr Sindhu Reddy will be the contingent commander.
Wednesday, the Indian Air Force said that 45 IAF planes, including 9 Rafal Jets and 4 IA helicopters, will take part in the fly-past. The Indian Air Force’s IL 38 Jet will take part in the parade for the last time. Formations of Dhwaj, Rudra, Baaz, Tiranga, Garuda, Bheem, Amrit, Thriul, and Vijay would fly by.
About GARUD Special Forces
The Garud Commando Force is the Indian Air Force’s special forces unit. It was founded in September 2004 and currently employs over 1500 people. The name of the unit is derived from Garuda, a divine bird-like creature in Hindu culture.
Garud forces are responsible for the protection of critical Air Force bases and installations, as well as search and rescue during peacetime and hostilities, and disaster relief during calamities. Garuds are currently deployed in Congo as part of UN peacekeeping operations.
Garud personnel are enlisted in the Indian Air Force as airmen. The Garud commandos are divided into fifteen ‘flights’. These flights are based at air force bases. Each flight is led by an officer with the rank of Squadron Leader or Flight Lieutenant and is made up of 60 to 70 men who work in squads of 14 soldiers. As of 2017, the Garud Commando Force had a reported strength of over 1500 personnel. The force is led by a Wing Commander officer. Additional personnel will be added to the force.
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