Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Pipes and Drums Band of 4/1 Gorkha Rifles Mesmerises Indore on I Day

Independence Day, 15 August 2015

Location: Regal Square Indore.

It was a solemn moment when Mrs Tripta Thapar  mother of Kargil martyr Captain Vijayant Thapar (Vir Chakra) unfurled the national flag at the above venue as part of the  69th Independence Day celebrations. This function was being conducted by 'Apna Samooh,'  a local NGO.  The presence of an Indian Army band in sparkling white uniform was noticed by all even before the function commenced.  This was the 'Pipes and Drums'  band of the 4th battalion of the First Gorkha Rifles also known as 4/1 GR and nicknamed 'Fore One.' 

The audience comprising of students, NCC cadets, ex-Servicemen and local gentry,  was  treated to the tunes of many national and martial songs. The smartly turned out Gorkha soldiers impressed one and all by playing the national anthem, the popular patriotic song 'Saare Jahan Se Achha Hindustan Hamara' and many more patriotic and martial tunes. The fifteen strong band is led by  band major Havaldar Chandra Bahadur Gurung. It comprises of nine pipers, three buglers cum side drummers also called snare drummers, two tenor drummers and one bass drummer.

In a Pipes and Drums band the entire drum section is known as the drum corps. The tenor drummers and bass drummer are known as the 'bass section.'

All regiments and infantry battalions of the Indian Army have their own bands. The ‘Pipes and Drums’ or ‘Brass Bands’ are the official bands. Many battalions and regiments also have a jazz band which plays light music on social occasions.

Bandsmen in  the Indian Army bands are soldiers first and they have other responsibilities too,  in battle they also play the role of medical assistants and help in treatment and evacuation of casualties. All Indian Army bands are trained at the Military School of Music in the picturesque hill station cantonment town of Pachmarhi in Madhya Pradesh. This school is part of the 
Army Education Corps (AEC) Training College and Centre, Pachmarhi. The 4/1 GR Pipes and Drums has the distinction of having played at Rashtrapati Bhavan and the Republic Day Parade at Rajpath, New Delhi.   

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