The Indian Army under the aegis of HQ Army Training Command (ARTRAC) organised the second edition of Hackathon aptly named “SAINYA RANAKSHETRAM 2.0” from October 2022 to January 2023 with an aim to seek solutions to operational cyber challenges and to jump start and telescope the development time for innovative solutions in the field of Cyber Security. The prize winners of the event were felicitated by Gen Manoj Pande, Chief of the Army Staff during a virtual function on 17 January 2023.
The event was aimed at providing a platform to identify indigenous talent in niche domains and enhance the standard of training in domains of Cyber Deterrence, Security Software Coding, Electro Magnetic Spectrum Operations (EMSO) and Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning (AI/ ML). The participation was open to all Indian citizens and participation permitted in an individual / team manner. Thus to meet this end state, the Cyber Threat Seminar cum Workshop was held under four sub-events which included following activities:-
Secure Software Coding – Its aim was to engage with academia in the field of securing software programs and identifying talent capable of undertaking cyber security requirements in software code. Mr Aravindha Hariharan M from Coimbatore, a Cyber Security enthusiast holding a number of certifications has won the prize in this category.
ESMO: Customised Indian Army Specific Stack for Wi-Fi 6 – The aim of conducting this sub event was to seek a solution to implement an Indian Army specific version of Secure Wi-Fi stack for increasing the levels of security. Colonel Nishant Rathee, Commandant, Army HQ Computer Centre is the winner in this category. Mr Suryasaradhi Balarkan currently working with L&T is the runners up and Ms Tanisha Joshi, who is currently pursuing a Ph D in Dark Energy has secured the 3rd prize.
Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning: NLP Processing and Decoding of Radio Intercepts. This sub-event helped create an Al stack for addressing translation and decryption of multi lingual radio transmissions. Master Mithil Salunkhe, a 15 year old class 10 student at Gyan Mata Vidya Vihar, Nanded, Maharashtra has come first this category. Mr Prashant Kumar Singh, who holds a B Tech (CS) from Punjab Technical University and presently pursuing B Sc (Data Science) from IIT Madras has come second while Cdr Sushant Sarswat, a Naval Officer presently posted in HQ Eastern Naval Command has secured the third position.
Cyber Deterrence: Capture the Flag (CTF). This was a seven stage cyber security exploitation challenge meant for identification of talent for enhancing existing Cyber Security setup. The winner of this challenge was Mr Shaksham Jaiswal, BE (CS) from MVSR Engineering College in Hyderabad. He is now working as a freelancer, and has more than 15 core qualifications in the field. The 2nd prize winner is Mr Prince Kumar Patel presently doing BE (IT) at Army Institute of Technology (AIT), Pune and Mr Hardeep Singh, a BCA from Maharaja Ganga Singh University in Bikaner has won the 3rd prize.
The Cyber Threat Seminar cum Workshop has facilitated engagement with the intrinsic talent at levels of individuals, academia and organisations leading to identification of suitable talent in the field of Cyber Security both within the Defence forces and in the civil academia. The identified talent can further be utilised for focused engagement resulting in fast track development of cyber security tools and techniques.