The Bangladesh Paracommando force is the largest organised Special Warfare unit of the Bangladesh armed forces. It is one of the combat arms of the Bangladesh Army. Since its formal creation in 1992 it has participated in almost every domestic and international military operation of the Bangladesh armed forces.
The unit strength of the Bangladesh Paracommando force is classified. It is however commanded by a Brigadier General from the Bangladesh Army. Operational command of this strategic force is directed from the GS branch of the Army Headquarters (AHQ). It is an all male outfit.
Other than Army personnel, specialised Paracommando training has been imparted to members of the Bangladesh Rifles, Bangladesh Navy, Bangladesh Coast Guard, Bangladesh Police and Rapid Action Battalion, therefore it is possible to rapidly multiple Paracommando battalions if the need arises.
As the largest strategic and special warfare unit of the Bangladesh armed forces the Paracommando’s are burdened with a wide range of responsibilities that include operations behind enemy lines, reconnaissance, counter-terrorism, long range combat patrol. Details of operational deployment remains classified however this unit has operated successfully in Africa, South America and the Middle East since its creation.
Generally, the Paracommando’s operate behind enemy lines performing the most difficult operations and are used to destroy high value targets, key enemy installations, administrative bases, communications centres, neutralising enemy commanders, destroying enemy command posts, bridges, culverts, gun positions amongst other targets.
Being a voluntary unit, aspiring members must have high morale, mental and physical endurance. The famed training imparted in the Army Commando course is the toughest in Bangladesh and one of the toughest in the world enabling to face the most difficult situations without conventional support during operations.
Training doctrine has been developed with input from Chinese, American, British and local experiences and practises.
Basic and advanced arms and tactical training is provided at various military training institutions located throughout Bangladesh, particularly at the School of Infantry & Tactics Special Warfare wing, Sylhet. A large jungle warfare training centre and firing range is being developed in the Chittagong Hill Tracts to support the present training regime.
The entire Paracommando force is air borne capable though members of the battalion are qualified for Airborne, Heliborne, Waterborne (Surface and submerged) and long range foot patrols. Training is undertaken both domestically and internationally.
Members of the Paracommando unit are sent to Belize, China, France, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Republic of Korea (South), Russia, Turkey, United Kingdom, and United States amongst other countries to receive advanced training and participate in multi-national training exercises, which are held throughout the year.
Members of the Paracommando force are provided with reliable, battle tested mission specific equipment. Generally a paratrooper is equipped with a BD-08 assault rifle, BD-08 LMG, MP5 SMG, Type 56 SMG, 9mm Type 92 semi-automatic sidearm, special load bearing backpack and kit containing mission supplies. He wears a red or maroon beret, which is an international symbol of commando forces and standard Bangladesh Army BDU.
Assault rifles, submachine guns, sniper rifles, light machine guns, general purpose machine guns, hand-grenades, rifle-grenades, military-grade explosives, anti-tank weapons, man-portable air defence systems, mortars, rappelling kits, diving equipment, surveillance kits, tactical communications sets, night vision devices, tactical body kits (special holsters, knee guards), bulletproof vests and helmets are also issued.
Armoured Personnel Carriers, helicopters, transport aircraft, fast boats and amphibious landing craft from the Army, Air Force and Navy are used to deploy members of the force during any operations and training exercises.