The harmony of the Indian Armed Forces speaks of the essential unity of the country as much as it does for its pluralism as a society, President Ram Nath Kovind said on Wednesday.The President was in Khadakwasla to review the Passing out Parade of the 134th course of the National Defence Academy (NDA). “As Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, this is a moment of immense satisfaction for me.”Mr. Kovind said a soldier or an officer in uniform, irrespective of whether he or she was from the Army, the Navy or the Air Force, evoked admiration and trust everywhere in the country. “The Armed Forces are a symbol of excellence and dedication for the entire country. This [134th Passing out Parade] comprises cadets from all parts of India, hailing from a variety of communities,” he said.He praised the NDA as the “crucible of valour and bravery” and complimented the cadets on their exceptional drill movements. A total 344 cadets graduated from the academy as they passed through the portals of Khetrapal Parade Ground in the morning. This included 238 cadets from the Army, 26 from the Navy and 80 from the Air Force. The batch also included 15 cadets from friendly foreign countries like Afghanistan, Bhutan, Maldives, Kazakhstan, Lesotho and Tajikistan. Academy Cadet Captain Arjun Thakur won the President’s Gold Medal for standing first in the overall order of merit. Divisional Cadet Captain Rahul Bisht won the Silver Medal for standing second, and Battalion Cadet Captain Shashank Shekhar won the Bronze Medal for standing third. Battalion Cadet Captain Akshat Raj won the President’s Gold Medal for standing first in the overall order of merit. Academy Cadet Captain Md. Sohail Islam won the Silver Medal for standing second, while Squadron Cadet Captain Ali Ahmed Choudhary won the Bronze Medal for standing third. The ‘Kilo’ Squadron bagged the prestigious Chiefs of Staff Banner for being the Champion Squadron during the parade.
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