726 pass out in first batch; will be posted at the Chennai airport for maintaining security
The synchronised thump of boots and slap of hands that clutched the rifles, as candidates saluted, was a sight to behold. Assistant Sub Inspectors (ASIs) in a glorious sea of yellow turbans marched past the audience while saluting the chief guest, Minister for Civil Aviation Ajit Singh.
The ASIs, most of them in their 20s, hail from across the country and have been trained by senior officers at the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) regional training centre near Arakkonam for 45 weeks now in combat skills.
On Saturday, they were formally declared ‘graduates’, but would continue to undergo six weeks training in commando warfare skills before being posted to airports as part of the security regimen.
After watching the candidates take a pledge of allegiance to the nation, the audience enjoyed a show of physical prowess, that included a display of skills in reflex shooting, yogasanas on rope and pole, crossing layers of fire to fight the enemy and martial arts. “I enjoyed it all very much,” said six-year-old Gargi Srivastav.
For the candidates themselves, the entire programme has been exciting. Surabhi Jha from Jabalpur said she had cleared the Staff Selection Commission exam and had won a certificate from the NCC during college.
Currently the CISF is deployed in 59 airports, but with airports getting busier the country had felt a need to improve security services, Mr. Singh said. “The nation is facing major challenges from terrorists and naxals who will not hesitate to go to any extent, and hence vital installations under CISF cover must be protected. We have deep faith in the professionalism of the CISF,” he said.
According to CISF Director General Rajeev, the first batch of 726 executives, including around 120 women candidates, received multidimensional rigorous training in areas such as industrial security, intelligence and surveillance, aviation, VIP security, arms and jungle warfare, conduct of raids, ambush and counter-ambush, map reading and night navigation.
All the trainees are graduates, some with professional qualifications. A total of 2,000 candidates have been recruited for the special training. The next batch of around 500 will begin their training shortly.