Officers Training Academy
Centurion tank at the gate of OTA Chennai
|Motto||Serve with Honour (OTA Chennai)
Shaurya, Gyan, Sankalp(Valour,Wisdom,Resolve) (OTA Gaya)
|Established||15 January 1963
14 November 2011 (OTA Gaya)
|Campus||750 acres (3.0 km2) (OTA Chennai)
800 acres (3.2 km2) (OTA Gaya)
|Affiliations||Jawaharlal Nehru University|
The Officers Training Academy, Chennai (OTA) is a training establishment of the Indian Army that trains officers for the Short Service Commission. The 49-week course at the OTA prepares graduates for all branches of the Army, except for the Army Medical Corps. Established on 15 January 1963, the academy is spread over 750 acres (3.0 km2) about 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) south of Chennai, India. A new academy has been set up at Gaya.
Seven Officers Training Schools were established in India between 1942-45 to meet the huge demand for officers to serve in the Indian and Commonwealth Armies during World War II. However, these schools were closed down at the end of the war.
In 1962, following the Sino-Indian War, India identified the need to expand the number of officers for effective operations. Two Officers Training Schools (OTS) were established in Pune and Madras (now known as Chennai) to train officers for Emergency Commission into the Army. The process of establishing the schools was begun in September 1962. The Chennai school was inaugurated on 15 January 1963, with Brigadier Ram Singh as its first Commandant. The Pune school had a short run and was closed in 1964. However, the school in Chennai continued to operate and on 2 February 1965, it obtained the sanction to shift focus to train officers for the Short Service Regular Commission.
The Short Service Regular Commission has evolved into the Short Service Commission, and the OTS has continued to train officers for these commissions. The school was granted permanent status in 1985. On 1 January 1988, the school was renamed as the Officers Training Academy (OTA), on a par with the NDA and IMA.
The first batch of 25 women to be commissioned as officers into the Army were trained at the OTA, with training commencing on 21 September 1992.
OTA Gaya, raised in July 2011, is the third pre-commission training (PCT) academy of the Indian Army with a planned training capacity of 750 cadets.
Cadets become part of a professionally competent commissioned officer corps of the Indian Army. The academy is located amid an estate of approximately 870 acres in a hilly terrain of Paharpur at Gaya. The academy is located en route from Gaya to Bodhgaya, approx 7 km from Gaya railway station. The international airport of Gaya is adjacent to the academy. In its vicinity is Bodhgaya, an international tourism destination. Gaya Cantonment dates back to World War II, as one of the headquarters of the British Army.
To mark the commencement of the academy, a flag hoisting ceremony was solemnised and the consecration of the raising of the academy was carried out in true secular tradition of the Indian Army, with recital of scriptures from holy books of different religions.
The academy has been equipped with state of the art training facilities, at par with other pre-commissioning training institutions.
The insignia of Officers Training Academy, Gaya has a two-colour background, with upper half as grey and the lower half blood-red, having two cross swords superimposed with the Dharmchakra. A scroll below bears the motto of the academy - 'Shaurya, Gyan, Sankalp' in devnagri.
The first batch of 149 trainee-officers underwent training in the academy during the period July 2011 to Jun 2012 and the first passing out parade was conducted on 8 Jun 2012. The second batch after successful completion of their training (January 2012 - December 2012) passed out on 8 December 2012. A total of 176 cadets from TES 26 and SCO 29 courses passed out on 8 December 2012. The academy currently has the capacity to train 350 cadets. Lt Gen Vinod Vashisht is the current commandant of the academy, having taken charge in 2015.
The academy has produced many war heroes and distinguished officers. Many have gone on to work for corporations after leaving the Indian Army. The OTA Alumni Association was registered under the Societies Act 1860 at Chandigarh with all India jurisdiction.
Param Vir Chakra
- Maj D. Sreeram Kumar - on deputation to 39 Assam Rifles
- Lt. Navdeep Singh (posthumous) - 15th battalion Maratha Light Infantry
- Capt (now Lt Col) Jas Ram Singh - 6th battalion Rajput Regiment
- Capt Jasbir Singh Raina - 10th battalion Brigade of the Guards
- 2 Lt (now Maj Gen) (Retd) Cyrus A. Pithawalla - 17th battalion Jammu & Kashmir Rifles
- Lt Col Harsh Uday Singh Gaur - 10th battalion Bihar Regiment
- Major Mukund Varadarajan (posthumous) - 44 Rashtriya Rifles
- Colonel Jojan Thomas (posthumous) - 45 Rashtriya Rifles
- Maj Kuldip Singh Chandpuri - 23rd battalion Punjab Regiment
- 2 Lt SS Samra (posthumous) - Brigade of The Guards
- Maj PS Ganapathi - 8th battalion Mahar Regiment
- Maj Krishna Gopal Chatterjee - 3rd battalion 4 Gorkha Rifles
- 2 Lt Rajeev Sandhu - 7th battalion Assam Regiment
- Maj Padmapani Acharya (posthumous) - 2nd battalion Rajputana Rifles
- Maj Sonam Wangchuk - Ladakh Scouts
- Lt (now Col) Balwan Singh - 18th battalion The Grenadiers
- Lt Keishing Clifford Nongrum (posthumous) - 12th battalion Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry
Other notable alumni
- Maj Mohommed Ali Shah- Theatre personality and Social activist
- "Recruitment and Training". Ministry of Defence, Government of India. Retrieved 2011-11-26.
- "Gaya Officers Training Academy poised to conduct maiden passing out parade". Yahoo News. 6 June 2012. Retrieved 10 July 2012.
- "Gaya to get Army's second Officers Training Academy". Times of India. 10 Feb 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2012.
- "Pranab Mukherjee to review passing-out parade at Chennai OTA". The Hindu. Chennai. 27 August 2016. Retrieved 28 August 2016.
- "OTA: Grooming Leaders". Sainik Samachar, Ministry of Defence. 2001-05-15. Retrieved 2011-11-27.
- OTA Alumni Association
- "A determined officer’s ultimate sacrifice in the service of nation". The Hindu. Retrieved 1 October 2014.