20 May 2017, Wangdue: For the last two weeks, they got only few hours sleep, got charred by sweltering sun, wallowed in dust, shouted their lungs out, stamped their feet almost to the breaking point, all as part of an intensive arms training they underwent.
For the 112 foresters, all these finally ended upon successful completion of the rigorous arms training at Tencholing on 20 May 2017. The closing ceremony was graced by Hon’ble Minister, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, His Excellency, Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji, accompanied by Kinley Tshering, Offtg. Director, Department of Forest and Park Services, Chief Forestry Officer, Thimphu Division and other officials.
While congratulating them, the Hon’ble Lyonpo said all these useful skills acquired must be used for effective protection, conservation and management of our natural resources. Forestry uniform, Hon’ble Lyonpo reminded is a special gift from His Majesty the Drukgyal Zhipa. “So you must accord it the utmost respect,” advised Lyonpo, adding that it must be not only worn properly but also with big pride. Hon’ble Lyonpo also thanked Military Training Centre for all the supports rendered. Outlining the need for all foresters to be equally fit and agile, Hon’ble Lyonpo said foresters also must try to participate in marathon both at national and international levels.
The 112 trainees, in last two weeks underwent extensive training on conducting effective patrolling to best nab the culprits. They were also trained not only on setting up ambush but also to escape if the team is ambushed by enemies. Recalling the incidences of foresters in the past getting blown up by Improvised Explosive Devices (IED), the demonstration were provided on how to identify potential site of implanted IEDs and escape unhurt. They were also trained on concealment and camouflage tactics.
During the training, they had class as well as practical firing of RBA’s all infantry weapons. “In terms of drill, they were taught exhaustively, starting from day one on correct wearing of beret cap to fastening the shoe lace,” said Training Officer, Maj. Dorji Lotey.
They were also thoroughly trained on physical fitness and agility. In addition, they conducted numerous sport competitions aimed to inculcate team spirits among them.
The trainees were all positive about the training. One of the trainees, Kelly T Dorji of Thimphu Division echoed them saying that he realized the true value of the uniform from the training. “The training made me realize that uniform is not an entitlement but something to be earned, which is sacred that needs to be respected for its sanctity,” said Kelly. Another trainee, Karma Choki of Sarpang Division said that the two weeks training tailored her from lax office goers to well organized and disciplined personnel while the training radically changed Sapna Sunwar of Trashigang division. For Gyem Tshewang of Pemagatshel Division, it was a most rewarding and fulfilling training. “We learned many technical aspect of our profession but it is rare we get to learn the military aspect,” told Gyem, which according to him is a crucial part and could be a life saver. “We operate almost like military personnel but we were never, before such training at Tencholing, introduced to such aspect,” said Gyem Tshewang.
Led by Hon’ble Lyonpo, all gathered observed a minute of silence to pay respect and homage to two forest officials who recently lost their lives in a fatal accident at Trashiyangtse.
Reported by: Ugyen Tshering, FIMS,