Indian Defence

Things You Should Know About India’s Oldest Paramilitary Force

  • Assam Rifles is one of the oldest paramilitary forces of India. It was raised in 1835 in British India. It is one of the Central Armed Police forces (CAPF) under the Ministry of Home Affairs. Along with the Indian Army, they guard the North-Eastern areas and Ind-Myanmar border region. Assam Rifles has nearly 63,000 personnel and has 46 battalions excluding administrative and training staff.
  • Assam rifles are the only Central armed police force with a dual control structure. The financial control is in the hand of the Ministry of Home Affairs and the operational control is in the hand of the Ministry of Defence. All the senior Rank officers are appointed from the Indian army.
  • The highest rank officer of Assam rifles is known as Director General which is the equivalent rank of Lieutenant General of Army. At present Lieutenant General, Sukhdeep Sangwan is the Current Director General of Assam Rifles.
  • The operational duties, transfer, and posting of personnel are decided by the Indian army. While its recruitment, promotions of its personnel and retirement policies come under CAPF rules. The majority of the personnel of Assam rifles want that MOD should control the administrative because more benefits given compare to CAPF personnel.
  • Army personnel also get one rank one pension retirement benefits that are not available to CAPFs personnel. But MHA wants full operational control so that they can give an integrated approach to border guarding forces. Both MOD and MHA wanted full control of the force for a long time.
  • In 2013 MHA made a proposal to merge Assam Rifles with Border Security Force (BSF). In 2019, the Home Minister proposal to merge Assam Rifles with Indo Tibet Border Police. Indian Army is also trying to take total control of Assam Rifles but also wants control of ITBP.
  • Assam Rifles has fought both World Wars, also the Sino-Indian war in 1962 and many counter-insurgency operations against militant groups in the North-Eastern region.
  • The Assam Rifles was raised to protect British estates and their settlements from tribal people. Initially, the force is known as Cachar Levy. In1883 it was reorganized as Assam Frontier Force as its role expanded beyond Assam borders.
  • Recently, for the first time, the Indian Army has deployed ‘rifle women’ along the Line of Control (LoC) between India and Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir on national security duty and these women soldiers are from the Assam Rifles and have entered the Indian Army on deputation. 
Rifle Women For Assam Rifles
  • Assam Rifles is the most awarded paramilitary force in India. After Independence, the force has won many gallantry awards. 4 Ashoka Chakras, 5 Vir Chakra, 31 Kirti Chakra, 120 Shaurya Chakras, 5 Param Vishisht Seva Medal, 12 Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, 188 Sena Medals, 74 Vishisht Seva Medal,1 Yudh Seva Medal, and 10 Mention in Dispatches are in the name of Assam Rifles.



I am Yatish Mahajan. Defence aspirant, want to wear stars on shoulders. At present pursuing BE in mechanical engineering.

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