Bangladesh Armed Forces
The Bangladesh Armed Forces (Bengali: বাংলাদেশ সশস্ত্র বাহিনী, Bānlādēśa saśastra bāhinī) consists of the three uniformed military services: the Bangladesh Army, the Bangladesh Navy and the Bangladesh Air Force. The para-military organization Bangladesh National Cadet Corps (BNCC) is a reserved force and directed by Army, Navy, Air Force.[clarification needed] It is under the command of Defence Ministry. The para-military Border Guard Bangladesh (formerly Bangladesh Rifles) and Bangladesh Coast Guard are under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Home Affairs during peacetime, but during wartime they fall under the command of Bangladesh Army and Bangladesh Navy respectively.
The President of Bangladesh is the Commander-in-chief of the military, the Armed Forces Division (AFD) is the principal administrative organization by which military policy is formulated and executed and the Ministry of Defence (MoD) does not exercise any authority over the Armed Forces and is far less powerful than the AFD. Currently, both AFD and MoD are headed by the Prime Minister of Bangladesh. To coordinate military policy with diplomacy both the president and the prime minister are advised by a six-member advisory board, three Chiefs of Staff, which includes the head of each of the regular services, Principal Staff Officer of the Armed Forces Division, and Military Secretaries to the president and the prime minister. The director generals of the NSI, the DGFI and the BGB also serve in an advisory capacity.
The Armed Forces Day is observed on 21 November. Official functions are held at "Bangabhaban", Armed Forces Division Headquarters, Dhaka Cantonment, and at every military installation throughout the country.
Bangladesh War of IndependenceEdit
The modern history of Bangladesh military began its inception on the night of 25 March 1971 when the Pakistan military launched a brutal attack named Operation Searchlight. On 26 March 1971, Major Ziaur Rahman, 2nd-in-Command of the 8th East Bengal Rgmt. and other Bengali officers organized a revolt and countered the Pakistan army units in Jessore, Chittagong, Comilla and other areas in East Pakistan. During the early morning hours of 26 March Sheikh Mujibur Rahman declared the Independence of Bangladesh as the interim head of the Provincial Bangladesh Government. On 27 March Major Ziaur Rahman broadcast the second declaration of Independence on behalf of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman from the captured Kalurghat radio station in Chittagong. Hence, the Independence day of Bangladesh is 26 March. On 4 April 1971 under the command and leadership of the commander-in-chief Colonel M. A. G. Osmani, the Bangladesh Forces began organization and creation with the title of Mukti Bahini. During the first Bangladesh Sector Commanders Conference (held during 11–17 July 1971) Mukti Bahini were organized and formed for the ongoing Bangladesh Liberation war from Pakistan. It was significant in the sense that during this historic conference the Mukti Bahini field command structure, sector reorganization, reinforcement, appointment of field commanders and tactics of warfare were decided upon and carried out. This conference was presided over jointly by the then Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Tajuddin Ahmed, and Colonel Muhammad Ataul Gani Osmani Commander in Chief of all Bangladesh Forces. During this conference M.A.G. Osmani was reinstated from retirement to active duty into the Armed Forces of Bangladesh as its senior most official, with the rank of colonel reactivated. Principal participants of this conference were Principal Military Representative of Bangladesh Government-in-Exile at Chakulia Guerilla Training Camp (Bihar) Squadron Leader M. Hamidullah Khan, Mukti Bahini Commander Sector 1 Major Ziaur Rahman, Mukti Bahini Commander Sector 2 Major Khaled Mosharraf, Mukti Bahini Commander Sector 3 Major K M Shafiullah, Mukti Bahini Commander Sector 4 Major C R Datta, Major M. A. Jalil, Captain Rafiqul Islam, Lt. Col. Abdur Rab, Wing Commander Khademul Bashar, Major Najmul Haque, Major Mir Shawkat Ali. Lt. Col. Abdur Rab was appointed as Chief of Staff, Bangladesh Army. Colonel Osmani unwillingly appointed Group Captain A. K. Khandker as deputy chief of staff in place of Group Captain Muhammad Ghulam Tawab, whom Osmani wanted to appoint as his Deputy Commander-in-Chief. Bangladesh was divided into Eleven Sectors under Sector Commanders. For better management of military operations each sector was divided into a combination of sub-sectors, commanded by a Sub-Sector Commander. The 10th Sector was kept under the direct command of the commander in chief and included the Naval Commandos as C-in-C's special operations force. These commandos were later absorbed into the Bangladesh Navy.
The Mukti Bahini received assistance from the Indian Government soon after the start of Bangladesh Liberation war. The Soviet Union and the US were also drawn in the Cold War politics in the region. The US policy of the Nixon Administration, guided by then US National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger was courting Pakistan to open ties with China, hence could not support the Bangladeshi struggle for independence. However, Nixon's policy did supply emergency relief assistance to India and diplomatic support to Pakistan.
On 21 November 1971, when the natural climate was dry and more adaptable and by which time the Bangladesh Forces had severely weakened the strength of the West Pakistan Forces through its guerilla operations, under a complicated politico-military scenario. India-Pakistan war of 1971 breaks out and Indian troops enter Bangladesh allied with Mukti Bahini. The Pakistani force were demoralized from constant attacks by the Mukti Bahini, on 16 December 1971 the Pakistani Military force in Bangladesh surrender to a joint force of Indian and Bangladesh forces. Group Captain A. K. Khandker represented the Bangladeshi side at the signing of the surrender treaty. K M Shafiullah, S Force commander, and a handful of others were also among the hundreds of local masses who surrounded the event from a distance. "No protocol was set on what they were supposed to do". A fact Shafiullah admitted himself. "We rushed to the Race Course from the airport. I was a member of Bangladesh delegation. But we were not sure what we were supposed to do. I was standing in front of the signing table. That's why I do not appear in any photographs. There was rejoicing all around. We put Niazi on a jeep and sent him away. That night I did not come across anyone." -Major General Shafiullah spoke to Kaushik Sankar Das.
The Bangladesh Forces was organized for the War of Independence in 1971 under 11 (eleven) sectors and subsequently into three brigade size commands with ultimately only one being fully operational and organized, Z Force.
BDF HQQ's 8 Theatre Road, Calcutta, India.
Prime Minister: Mr. Tajuddin Ahmad
BD Forces C-in-C: Colonel Muhammad Ataul Gani Osmani (Appointed General 1972)
BD Forces Principal Military Representative: Chakulia Guerilla Training Camp (Bihar) – Squadron Leader M. Hamidullah Khan(Until June)
BD Forces Deputy C-in-C Group Captain Muhammad Ghulam Tawab (17 Dec 1971 ~ 7 April 1972)
BD Government Non-Combatant Staff :
BD Forces Military Secretary to C-in-C Major Chowdhury
BD Forces ADC to C-in-C Captain Noor
BD Forces PSO I to C-in-C – Administration and Personnel
BD Forces PSO II to C-in-C – Operations and Training
BD Forces Chief of Army Staff Lt. Col. M. A. Rab (HQ Tripura)
BD Forces Deputy Chief of Staff(Liaison) Group Captain A.K. Khandker (Kalyani Bldg.)
Medals and decorationsEdit
- Bir Sreshtho-(Bengali: বীরশ্রেষ্ঠ; literally, "The Most Valiant Hero"), the highest gallantry award
- Bir Uttom- (Bengali: বীর উত্তম; literally, "Better among Braves"), the second highest gallantry award
- Bir Bikrom- (Bengali: বীর বিক্রম; literally, "Valiant hero"), the third highest gallantry award
- Bir Protik- (Bengali: বীর প্রতীক; literally, "Symbol of Bravery or Idol of Courage"), the fourth highest gallantry award
- Order of Military Merit
- Jestha Padak I (10 years service)
- Jestha Padak II (20 years service)
- Jestha Padak III (30 years service)
Bangladesh has consistently made large contributions to United Nations peacekeeping operations. As of May 2007, Bangladesh had major deployments in Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Lebanon, Sudan, Timor-Leste and Cote d'Ivoire. With 10,736 troops deployed, it ranks first in personnel contributions to UN peacekeeping. The government declined to participate in Iraq on a request from the United States. The deployment to Liberia began in October 2003 and has remained at a level of about 3200 who are participating in peacekeeping, charitable activities and infrastructure development.
Officers are trained and educated for two and a half years at the Bangladesh Military Academy, Bhatiary, Bangladesh Naval Academy at Patenga, both located in Chittagong and Bangladesh Air Force Academy located in Jessore. For advance training during their career, officers are sent to Bangladesh Defence Services Command and Staff College at Mirpur, while senior officers attend the National Defense University for Armed Forces War Course. Many attend the Military Institute of Science and Technology while serving. Officers of the Army Medical Corps are recruited after graduation from civil medical colleges. They undergo basic military training at Bangladesh Military Academy followed by professional training in medical corps centre and Armed Forces Medical Institute. Recently cadets of Armed Forces Medical College also started joining the services directly.
Bangladesh military ranks, essentially corresponds to those used by the armed forces of the commonwealth nations.
There are three different systems of rank for commissioned officers of the Bangladesh Army, Bangladesh Navy and Bangladesh Air Force. The Para-military force Border Guards Bangladesh follows the same rank structure as the Bangladesh Army. Bangladesh Coast Guard follows the naval rank structure.
- Bangladesh Army (Bangladesh Sena Bahini)
- Bangladesh Navy (Bangladesh Nou-bahini)
- Bangladesh Air Force (Bangladesh Biman Bahini)
Civil forces and reservesEdit
- President Guard Regiment (PGR) – Bangabhaban (President's Office)
- Special Security Force (SSF) – Prime Minister's Office
- Para-Commando Brigade(The Cheetahs) – Under Command AHQ, Dhaka, Bangladesh Army
- Special Warfare Diving And Salvage (SWADS) – Bangladesh Navy
- 41 squadron airborne – Bangladesh Air Force
- Savar Area Command
- Ghatail Area Command
- Bogra Area Command
- Rangpur Area Command
- Comilla Area Command
- Chittagong Area Command
- Ramu Area Command
- Jessore Area Command
- Sylhet Area Command
- Barisal Area Command
- Army Training and Doctrine Command
- Army Logistics Area
- HQ All Military Lands
- HQ Cantonment Boards
- HQ's of Bangladesh Army
- Armed Forces Division (AFD)
- 46 Independent Infantry Brigade
- 24 Independent Engineers Brigade
- 18 Engineers Brigade
- 6 Air Defence Brigade
- 14 Army Signal Brigade
- HQ, President's Guard Regiment
- Inter Services Selection Board (ISSB)
- HQ's Armed Forces Medical and Nursing Corps (AFMNC)
- Central Officer's Record Office (CORO)
- HQ's Armed Forces Recruiting Centre (AFRC)
- HQ's Cantonment Public Schools
- HQ's Armed Forces Library
- Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP)
- National Armed Forces Cemetery
Educational and training institutesEdit
- Army Institute of Business Administration (Army IBA), Savar Cantonment
- Bangladesh Military Academy (BMA), Bhatiary, Chittagong
- School of Infantry and Tactics (SI&T), Jalalabad Cantonment, Sylhet.
- Defence Services Command and Staff College (DSC&SC), Mirpur Cantonment, Dhaka.
- National Defence College (NDC), Mirpur Cantonment, Dhaka.
- Military Institute of Science and Technology (MIST), Mirpur Cantonment, Dhaka.
- Armoured Corps Centre & School (ACC&S), Majira Cantonment, Bogra.
- Engineer Centre and School of Military Engineering, Quadirabad Cantonment, Natore.
- Signal Training Centre and School, Jessore Cantonment, Jessore.
- Army Service Corp Centre & School, Jahanabad Cantonment, Khulna.
- Army Medical Corps Centre & School, Shaheed Salahuddin Cantonment, Ghatail, Tangail.
- Ordnance Corps Centre & School, Rajendrapur Cantonment, Gazipur
- Bangladesh Institute of Peace Support Operation Training (BIPSOT), Rajendrapur Cantonment, Gazipur.
- Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Centre and School, Saidpur Cantonment, Nilphamari.
- Corps of Military Police Centre and School, Shahid Salahuddin Cantonment, Ghatail, Tangail.
- Army School of Education and Administration, Shahid Salahuddin Cantonment, Ghatail, Tangail.
- Army School of Physical Training and Sports (ASPTS), Dhaka Cantonment, Dhaka.
- Army School of Music, Chittagong Cantonment, Chittagong.
- Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), Dhaka Cantonment, Dhaka.
- Army Medical College Chattogram (AMCC)
- Army Medical College Comilla (AMCCo)
- Army Medical College Bogra (AMCB)
- Army Medical College Jessore (AMCJ)
- Army Medical College Rangpur(AMCR)
Artillery Centre and School, Halishahar, Chittagong.
- School of Military Intelligence, Moynamoti Cantonment, Comilla.
- East Bengal Regimental Centre, Chittagong Cantonment, Chittagong.
- Bangladesh Infantry Regimental Centre, Rajshahi Cantonment, Rajshahi.
- Non Commissioned Officers Academy, Majira Cantonment, Bogra.
- Bangladesh University Of Professionals(BUP), Mirpur Cantonment, Dhaka.
Training institutes of Bangladesh Air ForceEdit
- Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Aviation and Aerospace University
- Bangladesh Air Force Academy (BAFA), Jessore.
- Flying Instructors School (FIS), Bogra.
- Command and Staff Training Institute (CSTI), Dhaka.
- Flight Safety Institute (FSI), Dhaka.
- Officers' Training School (OTS), Jessore.
- Aero-Medical Institute (AMI), Dhaka.
- Fighter Controller Training Unit (FCTU), Dhaka.
- School of Physical Fitness (SOPF), Dhaka.
- Recruits Training School (RTS), Chittagong.
- Training Wing (TW), Chittagong.
- Mechanical Transport Driving School (MTDS), Shamsher Nagar.
- Helicopter Simulator Institute BAF(HSI), Dhaka
- Bangladesh Naval Academy (BNA), Chittagong.
- BNS Shaheed Moazzem, Kaptai, Rangamati Hill District, Chittagong. (For Sailor's Advanced Training)
- BNS ISA KHAN, Chittagong (Home of 13 Different Training Schools)
- BNS TITUMIR, Khulna (Home of New Entry Training School (NETS) and School of Logistics and Management (SOLAM))
- School of Maritime Warfare & Tactics, Chittagong Port.
- Alikadam Cantonment (Bandarban)
- Bandarban Cantonment (Bandarban)
- Bangladesh Military Academy (Chittagong District)
- Bogra Cantonment (Bogra)
- Chittagong Cantonment (Chittagong)
- Comilla Cantonment (Comilla)
- Dhaka Cantonment (Dhaka)
- Dighinala Cantonment (Khagrachari)
- Halishahar Cantonment (Chittagong)
- Jahanabad Cantonment (Khulna)
- Jahangirabad Cantonment (Bogra)
- Jalalabad Cantonment (Sylhet)
- Jamuna Cantonment (Bhuapur, Tangail)
- Jessore Cantonment (Jessore)
- Kaptai Cantonment (Kaptai)
- Khagrachari Cantonment (Khagrachari)
- Kholahati Cantonment (Parbatipur, Dinajpur)
- Mirpur Cantonment (Mirpur)
- Mymensingh Cantonment (Mymensingh)
- Padma Cantonment (Munshiganj and Shariatpur)
- Postogola Cantonment (Dhaka)
- Qadirabad Cantonment (Natore)
- Rajendrapur Cantonment (Gazipur)
- Rajshahi Cantonment (Rajshahi)
- Ramu Cantonment (Ramu, Cox's Bazar)
- Rangamati Cantonment (Rangamati)
- Rangpur Cantonment (Rangpur)
- Saidpur Cantonment (Saidpur, Rangpur)
- Savar Cantonment (Savar)
- Shahid Salahuddin Cantonment (Ghatail, Tangail)
- Sheikh Hasina cantonment (Patuakhali)
Air Force basesEdit
- BAF Base Bangabandhu (Dhaka)
- BAF Base Cox's Bazar (Cox's Bazar)
- BAF Base Khademul Bashar (Dhaka)
- BAF Base Matiur Rahman (Jessore)
- BAF Base Paharkanchanpur (Tangail)
- BAF Base Zahurul Haq (Chittagong)
Future modernization plansEdit
Bangladesh has made a long term modernisation plan for its Armed Forces named Forces Goal 2030. The plan includes the modernization and expansion of all equipment and infrastructures and providing enhanced training.
Humanitarian operation after Cyclone Sidr
Bangladesh Army personnel unloading boxes of food for cyclone victims at Barisal
Army soldiers on active duty in Dhaka
Bangladesh Army's main battle tanks at Victory Day Parade 2017
Bangladesh Army's MBT-2000 main battle tank
Bangladesh Army's Type-69 IIG main battle tank
C-295 transport aircraft of Bangladesh Army
BTR-80 armoured personnel carrier of Bangladesh Army
BNS Osman (F-18) guided missile frigate at sea
Bangladesh navy patrol ship BNS Sangu
Mil Mi-171Sh helicopter of Bangladesh Air Force
Bangladesh Air Force aircraft during an exercise with US Air Force
Bangladesh Air Force paratroopers descend from a C-130 aircraft
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