President Droupadi Murmu on Thursday reviewed the passing out parade of 145th course of the National Defence Academy (NDA) at Khadakwasla in Pune and expressed happiness over the participation of the first batch of women cadets in the marching contingent.
Terming it as a historic day, Murmu extended good wishes to the women cadets, while noting that today daughters have to struggle to select a career of their choice.
She said the NDA is a "cradle of leadership" and asked the cadets to move forward by learning and adopting new technologies to face challenges of the future.
"Our forces are fully capable and ready to face any external or internal situation that tries to damage the spirit of unity and integrity of the country," she added.
Around 15 women cadets participated in the passing out parade along with their male counterparts.
Last year, the first batch of 19 women cadets joined the NDA, Khadakwasla, a premier tri-services institution that has given the country the finest military officers, and they are currently in the second year of the military-cum-academic training, a defence official earlier said.
The second and third year cadets take part in the passing out parade, the official said.
President Murmu, the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, on Thursday congratulated all the cadets who completed their course.
Maharashtra Governor Ramesh Bais and Chief of Defence Staff General Anil Chauhan were present on the occasion.
Murmu also congratulated the women cadets who were part of the marching contingent.
"I was told that from 2022, the training of women cadets has been started at the academy. Today, for the first time, the women cadets were part of the marching contingent," she said.
"Today is a historic day in the true sense and I am sure that the women cadets will take the NDA and the country to new heights in future," she said.
Murmu also congratulated the foreign cadets from friendly nations for the completion of their course.
She said the NDA is a "cradle of leadership" which has given birth to great warriors.
"This academy has a special place among the best training institutes of the country and is recognised as a strong pillar for the armed forces and the country," she said.
Murmu expressed confidence that the training and life values received from the NDA will always help cadets move ahead in life.
She asked the cadets to move forward by learning and adopting new technologies to face challenges of the future.
Murmu further expressed confidence that they will face every challenge with courage and bravery while carrying forward the values of the armed services.
She said protection of India's borders and internal security are essential for peace, stability and prosperity.
"We follow the tradition of 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam' (the world is one family), but our forces are fully capable and ready to face any external or internal situation that tries to damage the spirit of unity and integrity of the country," she said.
A total of 1,225 cadets participated in the parade, including 348 from the passing out course.
The 348 cadets comprise 186 from the Army, 36 from the Navy, 105 from the Air Force and 21 from Bhutan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Sudan, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Bangladesh.
These cadets will, hereafter, join their respective Pre-Commissioning Training Academics, a release said.
It said BCC Pratham Singh won the President's Gold Medal for standing first in the overall order of merit, while ACA Jatin Kumar won the President's Silver Medal for standing second.
BCA Harsh Wardhan Shailesh Bhonsle won the President's Bronze Medal for standing third, while the 'Juliet' Squadron bagged the prestigious 'Chiefs of Staff Banner' for being the champion squadron, it added.
-With PTI Input