In joint op with Myanmar, Indian army deploys ‘hammer and anvil’ tactics
India and Myanmar have conducted two synergised operations against insurgents on either side of the border under Operation Sunrise.Updated: Jun 17, 2019, 14:05 IST
After Myanmar Army captured and prosecuted at least 38 Indian insurgents, including those belonging to NSCN(K) in military operations last month, Naypyidaw and New Delhi have decided not to allow armed militant groups inimical to either country to operate along the shared boundary, according to people familiar with the matter.
Coordinated by national security adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval and director general military operations (DGMO) Lt Gen Anil Chauhan, India and Myanmar have conducted two synergised operations against insurgents on either side of the border under Operation Sunrise. The first phase began in February and the second in mid-May, with both armies deploying liaison officers in the operations room for full transparency, the people cited above said on condition of anonymity.
The groups targeted included anti-India outfits such as NSCN(K), ULFA, NDFB and PLA, as well as anti-Myanmar entities including in Arakan and other insurgents in Chin State bordering Mizoram. NSCN(K) is the SS Khaplang-led faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland.
According to a South Block official, the Myanmar army attacked multi-group terror camps at Taga in the north of the country across the Vijaynagar salient in Arunachal Pradesh in the first phase, and decimated Arakan, Nilgiri and Haukyat camps in the second. He added that Indian Army informed its Myanmarese counterpart that the militants had regrouped in these camps after the firefight in the first phase.
According to another official in the know, Myanmar expressed concern last October over Arakan militants getting shelter on the Indian side of the border. India’s security forces offered help to their counterparts by launching operations against Chin State insurgents. India’s DGMO visited Myanmar before both the first and second phases of the operation, and defence secretary Sanjay Mitra went to Naypyidaw last month to ensure full cooperation, the official added.
Previously, Myanmar Army would move out of the area after neutralising the threat, but this time it decided to stay put to ensure that anti-India militants did not return. The Indian Army is providing military provisions on the ground and tactical support in the form of UAV and satellite imagery to the Myanmar units on the ground. The first phase used “hammer and anvil” tactics with the Indian army holding strong on its side of the border and Myanmar’s forces taking action against groups that have not signed a ceasefire agreement with Naypyidaw and are not part of the peace process. The second phase was focused largely on anti-India insurgents, with the Myanmar army action forcing the insurgents to cross over and surrender to their Indian counterparts, the officials said.