There are several special forces units in India, each with their own area of expertise and responsibility. Some of the most well-known include the Indian Army’s Para Commandos and the National Security Guard (NSG).
The Para Commandos are a special forces unit that is part of the Indian Army’s Parachute Regiment. They are trained to conduct a wide range of operations, including counter-terrorism, direct action, special reconnaissance, and humanitarian assistance.
The National Security Guard (NSG) is a special forces unit that is specifically trained to deal with terrorist incidents. The NSG is also known as the “Black Cats” and is composed of two subunits: the Special Action Group (SAG), which is responsible for counter-terrorism operations, and the Special Rangers Group (SRG), which is responsible for providing security at airports and other sensitive locations.
There are other Special Forces in India too like Marine Commandos (MARCOS), Garud Commandos and special units in Indian Navy and Indian Airforce.
The MARCOS Marine Commandos are Indian special forces unit of the Indian Navy. They are one of the most elite and highly trained units in the Indian Armed Forces, and are known for their maritime special operations capabilities. The Indian MARCOS Commando was established in 1987.
The Indian Marine Commandos (MARCOS) were formed to meet the specific requirements of the Indian Navy for a special forces unit that could conduct a wide range of special operations, particularly in a maritime environment. The Indian Navy recognized that in order to protect the country’s vast coastline and strategic maritime assets, it needed a specialized unit that was trained and equipped to deal with a wide range of threats, including terrorism, piracy, and the sabotage of critical maritime infrastructure.
One of the key reasons behind the formation of MARCOS was the need to have a special forces unit that is able to operate from the sea, air and land. The MARCOS special forces were formed with the intention of creating a unit that could be rapidly deployed to conduct operations in a maritime environment, and that could operate effectively in the unique conditions that are found in the littoral regions of the country. Additionally, their expertise in amphibious warfare, counter-terrorism, and intelligence gathering are other reasons.
MARCOS Commando Training
The training process for the Marine Commandos (MARCOS) is considered to be one of the toughest in the world. The selection process is rigorous and only the best candidates are selected to join the unit. The training includes both a basic training phase and an advanced phase, where candidates are trained in a wide range of maritime special operations techniques.
The basic training phase focuses on building the physical and mental endurance of the candidates. This includes physical fitness training, weapons handling, and tactics, as well as specialized training in amphibious warfare and underwater operations. The candidates are also trained in survival skills, such as how to survive in the open sea, how to navigate using a map and compass, and how to survive in various types of terrain.
The advanced training phase is designed to build on the skills acquired during the basic training phase and focuses on developing the candidates’ specialized skills in areas such as intelligence gathering, counter-terrorism, direct action, and special reconnaissance. The advanced phase includes training in advanced weapons handling, advanced tactics, and the use of specialized equipment. The candidates are also trained in counter insurgency, close-quarters combat, urban warfare, unconventional warfare, operations from submarines and handling various types of vehicles.
The MARCOS also receive specialized training in counter-terrorism, including training in the use of explosives and in building clearance. They are also trained in handling various types of weapons, including rifles, pistols, machine guns, and grenades.
The MARCOS training also includes operating in various types of environments, including jungle warfare, desert, and mountain environments. They receive training in survival skills, such as how to navigate using a map and compass, how to survive in extreme temperatures and how to live off the land.
Key Abilities of the Indian Navy MARCOS
The MARCOS commandos of India are known for their maritime special operations capabilities. The unit has several key abilities that make them unique and effective in their operations:
- Amphibious warfare: The MARCOS are trained to conduct operations in a maritime environment and are skilled in amphibious warfare. They are capable of landing from ships, submarines, and aircraft onto a beach or landing area, then moving inland to conduct operations.
- Underwater operations: The MARCOS are trained in combat diving and underwater demolition, allowing them to conduct operations underwater such as reconnaissance, sabotage, and clearance of mines.
- Special reconnaissance: They are also trained in special reconnaissance and intelligence gathering, allowing them to conduct surveillance and reconnaissance operations in a maritime environment.
- Counter-terrorism: One of the key specialities of MARCOS is counter-terrorism, they are trained to conduct counter-terrorism operations, such as hostage rescue, and neutralizing terrorist threats.
- Close protection: The MARCOS are also trained to provide close protection to VIPs and secure critical maritime infrastructure.
- Adaptability: They are trained to operate in a wide range of environments, including jungle, desert, and mountain environments, making them adaptable to a wide range of situations and conditions.
- Airborne and Amphibious insertions: MARCOS are trained to conduct a wide range of operations from the sea, air and land, allowing them to be rapidly deployed to any location, whether it’s in the open sea or in a jungle.
- Weapon proficiency: The MARCOS have extensive training in handling various types of weapons, including rifles, pistols, machine guns, and grenades.
In conclusion, the key abilities of the MARCOS include their ability to conduct operations in a maritime environment, their specialized training in amphibious warfare, underwater operations, special reconnaissance, counter-terrorism, close protection, adaptability and proficiency with various types of weapons. They are also known for their ability to rapidly deploy and operate in a wide range of environments.
Special Operations Conducted By MARCOS India Commandos
The MARCOS Indian Navy forces have been involved in a number of high-profile operations over the years, both in India and abroad. Some of the key operations that have been carried out by the unit include:
- Operation Cactus: In 1988, the MARCOS were involved in Operation Cactus, which was conducted to restore the government of Maldives after it had been overthrown by a group of mercenaries. The MARCOS, working with other elements of the Indian Armed Forces, were able to quickly secure the capital city and restore the government to power.
- Counter-terrorism operations: The MARCOS are specialized in counter-terrorism, and have been involved in several high-profile counter-terrorism operations in India, including Operation Black Tornado in 2008, which was conducted to neutralize terrorist threats during the Mumbai terror attacks.
- Counter-piracy operations: In recent years, the MARCOS have been active in counter-piracy operations in the Gulf of Aden, and have played a key role in securing the Indian coastline from the threat of piracy.
- Operations at Andaman and Nicobar Islands: The MARCOS are also involved in operations at Andaman and Nicobar Islands, which is a strategically important archipelago in the Bay of Bengal. They are responsible for securing the islands and providing surveillance of the region.
- Operations in the North-East: The MARCOS are also involved in operations in the North-East of India, a region known for insurgency, where they work to secure the border and conduct counter-insurgency operations.
- Operation Pawan: MARCOS joined the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) between 1987 and 1990 in Sri Lanka with the goal of enforcing the terms of the Indo-Sri Lankan Accord, and to provide security to Tamils in the North and East of the country. The operation faced significant resistance from the LTTE and resulted in heavy casualties on both sides and was considered as a complex and controversial military operation with mixed results.
In conclusion, the MARCOS is an elite special forces unit of the Indian Navy. The unit is known for its high-quality training, its ability to operate in a maritime environment and its ability to conduct various types of operations. They played a major role in various operations and a one of the best special force in India. Their rigorous selection process and tough training regime ensure that only the best candidates are selected to join, and that they are well-prepared to handle whatever missions they may be called upon to undertake.