Para (Special Forces) also known as Para SF, are a group of special forces battalions of the Parachute Regiment in the Indian Army. These units specialize in various roles including hostage rescue, counter-terrorism, unconventional warfare, special reconnaissance, foreign internal defence, counter-proliferation, counter-insurgency, seek and destroy, and personnel recovery.
13 PARA SF
A few days back, we saw news stating that a new Para SF batallion has been raised which is named as 13 Para SF and are also called Thunderbolt Thirteen.
As of now, the Indian Army had total of nine SF battalions – 1,2,3,4,9,10,11,12, and 21.
Now we have the newest batallion resulting in the 10th SF battalion of the Indian Army.
Although, not much information about this battalion is there in the open source but choosing the number 13 as it may sound unlucky or not auspicious resounds the fact that this is yet another dreaded covert battalion of the Para SF, much like the 9 PARA SF which was famously known as the “ghost battalion” of the Indian Army, hence the number 13 gives the battalion a deadly profile for what SF is known for.
Also Read: All Para SF Battalions and Their Nick Names
Also, it should be noted that this battalion came into the existence after the raising of the armed forces special operations division (AFSOD). The AFSOD came into operation back in 2019. So we can say that the 13 Para SF can especially cater to the interest of the AFSOD and its growing area of responsibility.
As we know that the Indian Army follows a multi-skilled approach in raising such specialized units. Guesses can be made that this battalion might hold multi-skills to its envelope like other PARA SF battalions.
It can also be seen that 13 Para SF can also play a major role in undertaking Special Operations in the mountainous terrain, especially given the experience the Army gained in the recent entanglement with the PLA in the Leh and Ladakh region during the skirmishes in the India China border.
So we can say that raising a new SF batallion is not only customary important but also strategically important to serve the specific needs of the Indian Army.
What’s in the Future?
Conjectures can be made by saying that the Indian Army has got enough experience from the recent disputes on the India-China border. And by these experiences Army is implementing what needs to be done. This also gives an indication that the posture of India vis-à-vis China is changing. Now, India is not merely interested in undertaking a defensive posture when it comes to China but is looking forward towards developing offensive capabilities. Given the new approach of the Army, there is the possibility that more such new battalions and the task forces would be created based on modern age requirements as we face the constant threat of two-front conflict.
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Hope this article helps. Jai Hind.
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