Gilgit Baltistan Scouts
|Gilgit Baltistan Scouts|
Gilgit Baltistan Scouts logo
|Branch||Paramilitary forces of Pakistan|
|Role||Law enforcement/Border patrol|
|Part of||Ministry of Interior (MoI)|
|Director General, Gilgit||Brigadier Farooq Azam|
The Gilgit Baltistan Scouts (reporting name: GB Scouts) are part of the Paramilitary forces of Pakistan, under the direct control of the Ministry of the Interior of the Pakistan Government. The Scouts are an internal security force with the prime objective to protect northern borders of Pakistan and support Civil Administration in ensuring maintenance of law and order anywhere in Pakistan. The force was formerly known as the Northern Areas Scouts but was renamed to the Gilgit Baltistan Scouts in 2011 due to the imposition of "Empowerment and Self Governance Order" in 2009.
Gilgit Baltistan Scouts can be identified with Gilgit Scouts which were raised in 1889. This force played a key role in fighting the war of liberation against Dogra / Indian Forces in 1947/1948 and won independence for the people of Northern Areas (now Gilgit Baltistan). Gilgit Scouts were further reinforced by raising of Northern Scouts and Karakorum Scouts. These three Corps of Scouts subsequently merged in 1974 to form the Northern Light Infantry (NLI).
The first commander of the Northern Area Scouts was Brig M Aslam Khan, whose brother Air Marshal Asghar Khan was the renowned first C-in-C of the Pakistan Air Force.
After the Kargil conflict, in 1999 the Northern Light Infantry Units were given the status of regular Army. The need of having Civil Armed Force in the Northern Areas remained a constant demand of the people since 1974. NA Scouts, therefore emerged as 5th Civil Armed Force of Pakistan on 31 October 2003.
With the imposition of "Empowerment and Self Governance Order" in 2009, Northern Areas were given the name of Gilgit Baltistan. Consequently, Northern Area Scouts being a Federal Civil Armed Force in this region was also renamed as Gilgit Baltistan Scouts on 17 January 2011.
- Perform Border Security duties in Gilgit Baltistan or elsewhere.
- Assist the Army's Forces Command Northern Areas (FCNA) in the defence of the Country as and when required.
- Protect important Communication Centers and Routes.
- Undertake Counter Terrorism Operations on orders.
- Assist Law Enforcement Agencies in maintenance of Law and Order.
The Force is organized along the lines of regular army. Units in Gilgit Baltistan Scouts are called Wings with each one having a strength of 827 people. The Force has three wings, one training centre and Force Headquarters.
The three Wings and their locations are:
Each scout undergoes a six-month training at Gilgit Baltistan Scouts Training Centre. They undergo different training courses in the wings and Gilgit Baltistan Scouts Centre. Each year a number of selected scouts also acquire training from Pakistan Army training institutions. Training is conducted as under.
- To train selected recruits so as to turn a raw civilian in to an intelligent, self-confident, motivated and physical fit scout.
- Produce young scout with sound character traits, military bearing and appearance.
- Prepare a recruit mentally and physically for Internal Security and other operational requirements.
- To train recruits in handling of the basic weapons used in Gilgit Baltistan Scouts.
- Automatic Rifles – 7.62 mm Heckler & Koch/POF G3, 7.62 mm Type 56 (POF made)
- Sub-Machine Guns – 9 mm Heckler & Koch/POF MP5, 9 mm SMG-PK (POF made)
- Pistols – Glock series, Sigma series
- Sniper Rifles – Heckler & Koch/POF PSR-90 (POF made), Steyr SSG 69
- Hand Grenades – ARGES 84 (POF made)
- Anti-tank Weapons – RPG-7 (POF made) (Rocket Launcher), M40A1 (Recoilless Rifle)
- Machine Gun – 7.62 mm Rheinmetall/POF MG3 (POF made)
- Heavy Machine Gun – 12.7mm Type 54 (POF made)
- Mortars – Various locally produced in use
- Bullet Proof Jackets – Various local and foreign types
- Helmets – Modular Integrated Communications Helmet and indigenous helmets locally produced
- NVG goggles
- Utility Vehicles – Mohafiz (HIT made), Indus Hilux locally produced
- Helicopters – Bell 206, Bell 412
Operations and Internal Security
The Force is performing both operational and Internal Security tasks since its raising. The Special Composite Task Force formed for protection of Karakorum Highway is commanded by Gilgit Baltistan Scouts. The Force also took part in recent operations in Waziristan.
- Brigadier Inayat Wali (2004–2005)
- Brigadier Tassaduq Hussain Zahid (2005–2007)
- Brigadier Azmat Ali (2007–2009)
- Brigadier Nadeem Ul Ahsan Tirmizi (2009–2012)
- Brigadier Babar Allauddin (2012–2014)
- Brigadier Farooq Azam (2014–Todate)
- Hussain, Ejaz. "History of Gilgit Baltistan Scouts ( GB Scouts )". gilgitbaltistanscouts.gov.pk. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- Hussain, Ejaz. "Role of Gilgit Baltistan Scouts (GB Scouts)". gilgitbaltistanscouts.gov.pk. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- Hussain, Ejaz. "GB Scouts Training facilities )". gilgitbaltistanscouts.gov.pk. Retrieved 7 January 2017.