Prestigious MacGregor Medal awarded to Indian Army, Navy and Air Force personnel

Delhi :Recognising the imperative achievements in operational reconnaissance and extreme adventure sports, officiating Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC) and Chief of Army Staff General MM Naravane accorded the prestigious USI MacGregor Memorial Medal to two Indian Army personnel and one each from Indian Navy and Indian Air force.

Instituted on 03 July 1888, MacGregor Memorial Medal commemorates the memory of Major General Charles Metcalfe MacGregor, who was the officer of British Indian Amry and the founder of United Service Institution (USI).

United Service Institution (USI) is India’s oldest tri-service think tank, which was established in 1870 for research and debate on national security and military affairs. The ceremony was also held at USI and it witnessed the participation of Indian military top-brass and Armed Forces personnel.

Addressing the ceremony, COAS General MM Naravane complimented the USI for their great contribution to India’s strategic culture and professional grooming of future military leaders.

He also appreciated the role of USI in carrying the legacy of military explorations and extreme adventure sports.
He said, “the Indian Armed Forces are endowed with exceptional talent and the feats of the awardees will inspire and motivate others to emulate their example to bring laurels and glory to the organisation and India.”

The Genesis of USI MacGregor Memorial Medal

During its inception, USI MacGregor Memorial Medal was awarded for military reconnaissance and journeys of exploration such as British Army expeditions in Tibet, Central Asia, Afghanistan, and Burma.

After India’s independence, the medal was dedicated to adventure activities. Further, the medal is open to all ranks, serving and retired, of the Indian Armed Forces, Territorial Army and Assam Rifles.

The felicitated Officers:

Sanjay Kumar – Indian Navy

During 2018 – 2019, Sanjay Kumar, Chief EA (P), of the Indian Navy participated in La Ultra 111 Kms, the toughest race including the crossing of Khardungla Pass.

The officer secured 1st position in Navy Team in Solanq Sky Ultra (60 Kms) and he also bagged runners up position in 12 hours Stadium Run (110Kms). Further, the officer also won the High 5 Format of Hell Race (211 Kms) and set the new India Book of Records in Mumbai – Goa Ultra Relay (563 Kms).
Sanjeev Kumar – Indian Army

Sanjeev Kumar – Indian Army

Hav (Opr) (now Naib Subedar) Sanjeev Kumar of Indian Army Adventure Nodal Centre (Hang Gliding), School of Artillery, Devlali made a new world record in powered harness hang glider by staying aloft for 8 hours & 43 minutes, from Suratgarh to Barmer, Rajsthan, over a distance of 465.33 km on 12 December 2018.

This milestone was recognised by Limca Book of Records, India Book of Records and Asia Book of Records, which broke the previous world record of 313.13 km.

Anshu Kumar Tiwari – Indian Airforce

MWO Anshu Kumar Tiwari of Directorate of Adventure, Indian Airforce was tasked to check the feasibility of parachute landing at Khardungla pass (17,982 feet), to showcase the airborne capability of the Indian Armed Forces.

The officer undertook the jump successfully from 24,000ft on 8th October 2020, thereby establishing the operational validity of this critical parachute system. It is noteworthy that this demonstration was done for the first time in international history.

Ajay Kumar Singh – Indian Army

Major Ajay Kumar Singh of a Para Special Forces Battalion of the Indian Army, planned, trained and successfully led a 1,660 km long ARMEX 21 (ski expedition) from the Karakoram in Ladakh to Uttarkhand.

The officer crossed 26 rugged passes above 18,000 feet in the great Himalayas for 119 days during winters. The exploration brought a better understanding and capabilities for military operations in super high-altitude terrain.

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