Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Tete-a-Tete with the Bharat Army

When and how did Bharat Army come into being? What was the thought behind forming the Bharat Army?

The Bharat Army was founded in 1999 during the World Cup in England where 4 passionate followers of Indian Cricket met for the first time while following the Team during the World Cup. Since then we have been supporting and following Team India around the world for the past 15 years!

We felt with the passion Indians around the world have for the game we needed a common voice in support of Indian Cricket so the First Official Team India Supporters Group was Born.

How much planning goes into preparing for a match/tour? What are your preparations for tours ? And how do you guys manage work and finances ? What has been the largest contingent of Bharat Army at a venue/tour till date?

The Bharat Army is now a non-profit making organisation, in the past we worked with a Travel Company that was recommend to us by the Barmy Army to sell Tours to the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies. We ended up taking 900 Supporters to the World Cup but unfortunately it turned out to be a disaster as we got knocked out early!

As we are now recognized around the world for being Team India's No.1 Supporters Group we manage to get block bookings for tickets in the stadiums around the world, you would have seen a strong presence this summer in England but also during the World Cup in 2011 in India going back to South Africa in 2007.

We raise funds to run the Bharat army by selling Merchandise and use the profits for the running of our Website and Social Media activities but also contribute to Indian Charities.  This year during the summer in England we supported Yuvraj Singh's YouWeCan Foundation and also a Charity in India called The Aware Foundation which supports the Education of Underprivileged children on India.

How do you counter other armies like Barmy army and Stani army when there is a face off ?

When it comes to our rivals, well we know the guys who run The Barmy Army well, in fact they helped us with the set up in our early days. As for the Stani Army, i think it's great they have followed the Bharat army and set up a similar supporters group - makes for good fun banter in the stadiums when we meet!

Are there any specific trademark routines/songs that have become part of the Bharat Army culture?

If you go onto our website you will see we have a 'Songs' section we have plenty of songs we sing in the stands. However our most famous which has now become The Bharat Army anthem and is written on the back of our supporters shirts is 'Yeh Dosti' - The song represents everything our supporters group is all about and we feel particularly when singing in the stadium beings together all Indian Fans in support of our Team. 

Does the Army organize any special events when the matches are not going on?

When India are not playing we have a number of social events mainly centered around cricket. In the past we have held cricket tournaments and cricket matches between our regional supporter groups around England and have a similar tournament planned in Australia where we will play Indian Supporters from all over the world.

How do you design or come up with their group T-shirts/logos/flags etc?

Our Merchandise which is available online at our website was designed with the feedback of our members. We came up with some base designs and then with the feedback from our members we went ahead with final designs.

Our flags are very unique and now are synonymous with The Bharat Army - we get plenty of Ideas for flags from our members and bring out a new flag for each tour.

How do you guys celebrate an Indian win after the match?

Celebrating a India win is brilliant as most members have become very good friends who through going on Tours around the world together we use the opportunity to gather socially as well - so celebrating a win is even sweeter!

How is the Army warming up for the upcoming World Cup?

We have members from all over the world that have been joining us on Tours for years...Mumbai, Delhi, Dubai, Australia to name a few.

As Australia is a long way for many of our members and the World Cup is 6 weeks long we have 2 Tours for the World Cup. One which starts at the group stage and one which starts at the QF stage. You can be sure The Bharat army will be present in Big numbers as normal supporting our beloved Team India throughout the Tournament!

How can people join Bharat Army?

To join the Bharat Army is very simple. It's FREE of charge. So just register on our website and follow us on our Social Media @thebharatarmy on Twitter, TheBharatArmy on Instagram and The Bharat Army our Facebook Page.

No comments :

Post a Comment