The modern battlefield is complex and vast. The terrain and the geographical reach within which the Indian Army is required to operate, calls for a complex system. The army is made up of bodies of troops of varying strength (numbers). These troops are skilled and equipped for many different types of tasks. Some of these troops are from fighting arms, while others are from supporting arms and services. Thus, when a force is assembled, it comprises of troops of various types.
The structure and organization of the army is to be understood in terms of the arms and services. Force sizes from the lowest upwards are generally called the section (10 men), platoon (36 men), company, battalion, brigade, division, corps and commands.
Sometimes, these are also known by some other names, which came from traditional origins, such as a battery or squadron (equal to a company), a regiment (equal to a battalion), troop (equal to a platoon) and detachment (equal to a section). Regiments having Guns include troop and battery, and those with tanks have troop and squadrons.
The President of India is the Supreme Commander of the Indian Armed Forces. The elected political leadership of the nation. The Government of India, controls the armed forces. Executive control is exercised through the Union Cabinet, the Defence Minister, the Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC) and the Chiefs of Army, Naval and Air Staff of their respective Services. The Ministry of Defence handles matters related to personnel, financial and resource management.
Formations: Indian army units are grouped into formations. Each formation has a size, role and equipment profile. All formations have a hierarchical command and control set up. The Army Headquarters controls the entire structure.
Command: Indian Army has six operational Commands and one training command, each commanded by a General Officer Commanding-in Chief with the rank of Lieutenant General. The Commands of Indian Army are:
Corps: A Corps is an army field formation responsible for a particular area under a Command. A Command generally consists of two or more Corps.
Division: Division comes under a Corps. It generally consists of three or more brigades of combat troops and support elements. Divisions can be Infantry divisions, armoured divisions, artillery divisions, etc.
Brigade: A Brigade generally consists of three or more battalions comprising of around 3000-5000 combat troops with supporting elements. Army also has independent brigades, which directly operate under the Corps Commander.
Battalion: A battalion consists of approximately 900 combat soldiers. It is the main fighting unit.
Company: A company consists of approximately 100 - 150 soldiers.
Platoon: A platoon consists of 36 soldiers. A platoon is further divided into three sections.
Section: A section is the smallest military formation of the Army. The strength of a section is ten soldiers.
The rank structure of Commissioned officers is:
FIELD MARSHAL → GENERAL → LIEUTENANT GENERAL → MAJOR GENERAL → BRIGADIER → COLONEL → LIEUTENANT COLONEL → MAJOR → CAPTAIN → LIEUTENANT
The rank structure of JCOs/NCOs is:
SUBEDAR MAJOR → SUBEDAR → NAIB SUBEDAR → HAVILDAR MAJOR → HAVILDAR → NAIK → LANCE NAIK → JAWAN
The army is further organized into parts, Arms and Services. Arms cover troops which carryout actual operations and the remaining components of the army are Services. Their primary duty is to provide logistics and administration for the army.
A. Fighting Arms
B. Supporting Arms