Emotional moments at OTA passing-out parade

Staff Reporter

296 new officers commissioned into Indian Army in various regiments

Amritpal Singh won gold medal for Best All Round CadetAmong female cadets, Neelam Rathee bagged the honoursChief of Army Staff's banners presented to Jessamy Company

TAMBARAM: After a passing-out parade for cadets of the Officers Training Academy at St. Thomas Mount on Saturday, 296 new officers were inducted into the Indian Army in various regiments in different parts of the country.

A few officers appeared bleary-eyed. Instructing staff at the Academy bid the officers adieu.

As the cadets marched in perfect union to the tunes of `Auld Lang Syne' on the lawns of OTA, their friends and parents applauded.

Amritpal Singh, parade commander during the ceremony, received the Sword of Honour and gold medal for the Best All Round Cadet.

Praveen Kumar received the silver medal. Among the female cadets, Neelam Rathee bagged the top honours.

Son of an Army Officer, Amrit, a B.Sc graduate in Mathematics, Physics and Geography from Pune, aspired to don the uniform since his childhood days. "I will join 2 Rajputana Rifles that was instrumental in the Kargil victory," he said.

A product of the Kendriya Vidyalaya, Avadi, Chennai, Praveen Kumar, a Chemistry graduate, also wanted to be in the Armed Forces from childhood, as his father was an officer in the Indian Air Force as well. Neelam Rathee, a Commerce graduate from Haryana, said the reward was for her consistent performance throughout the year.

The Chief of Army Staff and Commandant's Banners were presented to Jessamy Company. Company commander Senthil Anand received it from Lieutenant General S. K. Sinha, Governor of Jammu and Kashmir.