An officer and a gentleman, the NDA way
Pune: True to its credo of producing officers who are gentlemen, the National Defence Academy (NDA), the country's premier institution imparting leadership training to the three services, has introduced an element of refinement to its syllabus.
In one of the major initiatives it has taken to meet the contemporary requirements of the armed forces, the NDA authorities have now incorporated a "Finishing School Capsule" for personal grooming of the cadets who pass out to become officers leading their men to defend the country's borders.
"A capsule on communication, fine dining, music appreciation, personal grooming, financial management and the aspect of being an officer and a gentleman has been introduced in the training syllabus," said Vice Admiral Satish Soni, Commandant NDA.
In addition to the rigorous military training that the young cadets undergo at the sprawling 7000-acre campus at Khadakwasla, about 20 km from here, the authorities are putting an emphasis on fostering skills of original thinking and lucid expression in writing.
"Power of written expression too is an important attribute of a military leader. Towards this goal, journal writing has also been introduced from this term," Soni added.
Commandant Soni in a media interaction said, "the vision laid down in the long term perspective planning for the academy is being followed in letter and spirit. The training syllabus is reviewed and refined to meet the contemporary requirements of the armed forces".
As part of the initiatives envisaging personal grooming, Soni said, "each squadron ante-room has been developed into a public speaking Lab" to enhance cadets' articulation skills.
"A voluntary forum to study and discuss subjects of topical relevance has been created to help in intellectual development and social awareness of the faculty," Commandant Soni said.
The NDA which also trains cadets from friendly countries like Bhutan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Maldives and Afghanistan, has a strength of 1883 which is being enhanced with an additional 120 cadets with the raising of a new 16th squadron, expected to be ready by 2013.