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In a first, women to participate in BSF camel contingent on Republic Day

For the first time, the BSF camel contingent for Republic Day will have women (Pics. Courtesy Twitter/@DDNewslive)

With women joining different wings of the armed and paramilitary forces, they are assuming more roles and responsibilities. An example of this will be seen during next year’s Republic Day parade on January 26 when Border Security Force’s much appreciated camel contingent will include women.

This was announced by Pankaj Kumar Singh, BSF Director General on the eve of its 58th Raising Day today, December 1. Informing that half of the personnel of the camel contingent will be women, he observed: “This is an indicator of the increasing role of our women personnel in various duties and ceremonies.”

BSF’s famed camel contingent has been a part of the RD celebrations since 1976 when it replaced a similar squad of the Army which had been participating in the annual event since 1950, when it was first held.

The contingent has armed BSF personnel and band contingent members and they follow the force’s marching group.

BSF Camel Contingent Republic Day2
The BSF band which is also a part of the Republic Day contingent

There are usually 90 camels in the camel contingent with 54 troop members and the remaining consisting of band personnel. While the lead group is led by a BSF border guard, the second one has bandsmen donning beautiful multicolour dresses and playing martial music.

This contingent also participates in the Beating the Retreat on January 29 and stands on the North and South block ramparts.

BSF has the unique distinction of using camels for both operational and ceremonial duties. The animals are used to patrol the Thar desert along the Indo-Pak border in Rajasthan.