Indian Army Ranks and Insignia: ‘Sewa Paramo Dharma’ is the main objective of the Indian Army, in other words, it is the safety, honor, and welfare of the country. According to the Global Firepower Index(GFP) which rates the military forces all over the countries on the planet, the Indian army is ranked as the fourth most powerful military in the world after the US, Russia, and China. Indian army ranks are broadly classified into three categories, namely, Commissioned Officers, Junior Commissioned Officers(JCOs), and Other Ranks(Non-Commissioned Officers and Soldiers). Scroll down to more about Indian army ranks.

Indian Army Ranks and Insignia

The Indian Army ranks correspond to the western militaries such as the British and Commonwealth Nations. Presently, the Indian army ranks list is classified into three categories:

  • Commissioned Officers (CO)
  • Junior Commissioned Officers (JCO)
  • Other ranks (Non-Commissioned Officers and Soldiers)

Commissioned Officers: Ranks & Insignia in Indian Army

Commissioned officers are equivalent to All India services and Group ‘A' Service Officers. They are the leaders of the army whose function is to command. Below is the description of Ranks and Insignia of commissioned officers. The total no. of commissioned officers is 10 and among them, the Field marshal is the highest rank in the Indian army followed by this is General of the Indian Army who is the chief of the Army Staff. Next in the hierarchy is the lieutenant general, Major general, brigadier, colonel, Lieutenant colonel, Major, Captain, and Lieutenant.

Commissioned Officers: Ranks & Insignia in Indian Army
Commissioned OfficersInsignia
Field MarshalNational emblem over a crossed sword and baton in a lotus blossom wreath.
GeneralCrossed sword and baton with star and national emblem.
Lieutenant generalCrossed sword and baton with national emblem above.
Major generalCrossed sword and baton with the star above
BrigadierThree stars in a triangle and National Emblem above
ColonelTwo stars and the national emblem above
Lieutenant ColonelOne Star and National Emblem above
MajorNational Emblem
CaptainThree stars in one line
LieutenantTwo stars in one line
Indian Army Ranks

Indian Army Ranks

Below is the detail of Indian Army commissioned officers:

Field Marshal: Field Marshal is one of the highest attainable ranks in the Indian army. This is the five-star rank general officer. Till now, this rank is only held by two army officers, namely Sam Manekshaw and Kodandera Madappa Cariappa. The insignia of the field marshal consist of a National emblem over a crossed sword and baton in a lotus blossom wreath.

General: The Indian general officers are high-rank army officers. they are next to Field Marshal. He is the chief of army staff. The General officer is a four-star rank officer.  The insignia of the General is Crossed sword and baton with a star and national emblem. Currently, General Manoj Mukund Naravane is the chief of army staff.

Lieutenant general: This is the second highest rank army officer. The Lieutenant general is a three-star rank commissioned officer. The insignia of the Lieutenant general has Crossed sword and baton with the national emblem above.

Major general: This officer comes next to the Lieutenant general in the hierarchy. The insignia of the Major general is Crossed sword and baton with the star above. The Collar patches of the major general are two golden stars.

Brigadier: Brigadier is a one-star rank commissioned officer. He ranks above the colonel and below the major general. The insignia of the Brigadier is Three stars in a triangle and National Emblem above.

Colonel: The Colonel ranks above the lieutenant colonel and below the brigadier. The insignia of the Colonel is Two stars and the national emblem above.

Lieutenant Colonel: A lieutenant colonel is the Battalion Commander in charge of hundreds of soldiers or a general staff officer in a division or corps. The insignia of the Lieutenant Colonel is a One Star and National Emblem above.

Major: Major is ranked above the captain but below the lieutenant, The insignia of the Major is National Emblem.

Captain: The insignia of the Captain is Three stars in one line.

Lieutenant: The Lieutenant is the junior rank in the Indian Army. He oversees 40 to 60 subordinates who directly work under him. The insignia of the lieutenant is Two stars in one line. 

Junior Commissioned Officers: Ranks & Insignia in Indian Army 

JCOs(Junoir Commissioned Officers) are equivalent to Group B gazetted officers.  JCOs are promoted from the rank of non-commissioned officers. The Senior non-commissioned officers are promoted to JCO rank based on seniority and merit. They lie between the Commissioned Officer and the NCOs. JCOs hold three different roles, that is, Subedar Major, Subedar, and Naib Subedar. Below is the table of JCOs and their insignia.

Junior Commissioned Officers: Ranks & Insignia in Indian Army
Junior Commissioned OfficersInsignia
Subedar MajorNational Emblem
SubedarTwo stars in one line
Naib SubedarOne star

Other ranks(Non-Commissioned Officer)

The other ranks include Non-commissioned officers, who are below the commissioned officers, and junior commissioned officers. Usually, the seniormost NCOs get promoted to become JCOs As per the Regiment and Crops pattern, NCOs are authorized to wear Chevron. Below is the table of ranks of NCOs and their Insignia. 

Other ranks(Non-Commissioned Officer)
Non-Commissioned OfficerInsignia
CQMH( Company Quarter Master Havildar) Three Strips and Ashoka Chakra on top
HavildarThree rank chevrons
NaikTwo rank chevrons
Lance NaikSingle rank chevrons
SepoyPlain shoulder badge only

 

Indian Army Ranks- FAQs

Ans. The Highest rank in the Indian Army is the Field Marshal. It is an honorary five-star rank General Officer.

Ans. According to the Global Firepower Index(GFP) which rates the military forces all over the countries on the planet, the Indian army is ranked as the fourth most powerful military in the world after the US, Russia, and China.

Ans. Presently, the Indian army ranks list is classified into three categories: Commissioned Officers (CO), Junior Commissioned Officers (JCO), Other ranks (Non-Commissioned Officers and Soldiers)

Ans. Sam Manekshaw was the first field marshal of India, and was conferred the rank on 1 January 1973.

Ans. The Indian general officers are high-rank army officers. they are next to Field Marshal. He is the chief of army staff. Currently, General Manoj Mukund Naravane is the chief of army staff.

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