Who is the Field Marshal of Indian Army?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 11th, 2023

This article will address the commonly asked question, “Who is the Field Marshal of Indian Army?”. The highest possible rank in the Indian Army is Field Marshal, a five-star general officer title. Although it is not used in the regular Army structure, the Field Marshal of India is the rank directly above the General.

The national crest is placed over a crossed baton and sabre in a lotus blossom wreath as a Field Marshal’s insignia. Read the entire article to know more about the Field Marshal of Indian Army.

Field Marshal of Indian Army

Candidates are advised to go through the entire article as this might help you during your NDA Exam and other Defence exams. Currently, there isn’t a Field Marshal of Indian Army. Sam Manekshaw received the title of Field Marshal on January 1, 1973, becoming India’s first Field Marshal. The rank was given to Kodandera M. Cariappa on January 15, 1986, making him the second recipient.

With only two awards, it is primarily a ceremonial or military rank. The national anthem is displayed over a crossed baton and saber in a lotus blossom wreath as the Indian Army Field Marshal’s insignia. An officer who has retired from active duty cannot attain the Field Marshal rank because it is a lifelong rank. 

Just before retiring in 1973, Manekshaw received the position of Field Marshal of Indian Army, and Cariappa had already retired, so he could not be appointed a Field Marshal following the convention. To show Cariappa the respect he deserved, the Indian government ignored this tradition, and in 1986 he was appointed a field marshal.

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