3 June:1. The Chief of Naval Staff and Chairman of Chiefs of Staff Committee, Admiral Sureesh Mehta, PVSM, AVSM, ADC congratulated the team of NDA cadets, comprising Cadet Harshwardhan Pathak and Cadet Ritwik Sankrit for their outstanding performance in the international competition on the Laws of Armed Conflict (LOAC) for Military Academies, conducted from 31 Mar to 04 Apr 2008, at the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, San Remo, Italy. In this competition, Cadet Harshwardhan Pathak was adjudged the "Second Best Individual Cadet" and Cadet Ritwik Sankrit bagged the "second prize" in the team category.
2. A total of 120 cadets from 28 Academies and 18 countries including USA, South Africa, France, Israel, Ireland and Canada amongst many others took part in the competition. Many countries fielded multiple teams. India has been represented by National Defence Academy since 2005. India is likely to field more teams from Army, Navy and Air Force academies in the coming years.
3. National Defence Academy, located at Khadakwasla, Pune, is India’s most prestigious tri service military institution. It is popularly called the cradle of Indian Military leadership as it grooms and trains cadets for Indian Army, Navy and Air Force in the spirit of jointmanship.
4. NDA has achieved laurels in this field for the third successive year. In 2005, it was adjudged to be third " Best Academy" of the world. These results clearly demonstrate the high quality of our training and commitment towards international agreements, respect for humanitarian laws and the importance accorded to these aspects in its basic military training.
5. Participation of NDA team in this competition was supported by the Regional Delegation in New Delhi of the International Committee of the Red Cross. The representatives of the ICRC Delegation also assisted and supported NDA in training the teams for the competition.
6. Brig MB Anand, VSM (Retd) who is on the Board of Consultants with ICRC, explained that LOAC or the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) is a branch of international law and is based on Geneva Conventions. It concerns, firstly, with protection of these who are not taking part in an armed conflict directly and secondly on limitations on means and methods of warfare which have been universally agreed to by almost all countries of the world including India (like non use of poisonous gases). He emphasised that principles of IHL/ LOAC are in conformity with Indian value system, traditions and military ethos. Indian military leadership has always directed troops to ensure minimising innocent civilian causalities and collateral damage in operations conducted by them.