Joining the armed forces is one thing – you need to be the best of the rest; but being the best of best is another. Hi Warriors, earning the sword of honour in a military training academy is no joke. Bear with me. Consider the odds: Every six months, on an average, about 6 lakh applicants apply for any given military academy (that’s a ‘6’ with five zeroes!). Of those, about 30-40 thousand gets selected for the SSB after clearing the exam (correct me). Of those 30-40 thousand, on an average, 500-700 gets recommended. And out of those final 500-700, the top 250 makes it to the academy. So, the odds are every 1 in 2000 applicants gets to join the prestigious academy.
And.. and.. out of those 250 lucky chaps, only 1 gets to earn the most prestigious ‘Sword of Honour’! So, agree with me that earning it is no joke?
Moving on, here are the 7 parameters that make a merit list for earning the Sword of Honour:
- Physical Tests: This is the most expected one out of any cadet to be considered for the sword of honour. When you are in an institution whose roots lie in the physical fitness, this can’t be compromised. This includes all sorts of drills and swimming tests. The fitter you are, the higher your chances to get top in the merit list.
- Field Training: This is the basic military skill to operate stealthily and the methods used to do so. Efficient field training is only possible by spending time, effort, and attention to memorize battlefield details, infiltration and escape routes, construction and employment of hiding positions, enemy force doctrines and equipment.
- Service Subjects: When you are already in final term, you are given your specialized service subjects. These are the subjects you earn if you are capable of it. So, much like field training, specializing in your service subjects earns you extra credits to be at the top in the merit list.
- Active Participation: An active participant is liked by everyone – one who doesn’t say ‘no’. You are expected to participate in games and sports and excel in it.
- Holding Appointments: This parameter puts to test the organisational and management skills which are by the most important skills an officer must have. Holding appointments makes it clear about what you are capable of.
- OLQs: For those who thought OLQs are only limited till the SSB screening, think again. You are tested for OLQs because you are expected to carry forward the same. Your OLQs are tested at each and every point in the academy.
- Additional Course: Those who have opted for an additional course like ‘Basic Para’ have an upper hand against those who haven’t. Hence, it again earns you extra credit to top the merit list.
Winning the Sword of Honour, you don’t need any introduction. The sword speaks for you. How many of you want to earn the Sword of Honour?