India and Russia will jointly take down a ‘mock up’ terrorist base located in a third country as part of a first of its kind tri-service joint military exercise.(HT file photo for representation)
India and Russia will jointly take down a ‘mock up’ terrorist base located in a third country as part of a first of its kind tri-service joint military exercise.(HT file photo for representation)

India, Russia to jointly attack ‘terror haven’ as part of military exercises

While the naval phase will be held at Goa, the land phase will be held at Babina, Jhansi a cantonment town in Uttar Pradesh.
Hindustan Times, Panaji | By Gerard de Souza
UPDATED ON DEC 13, 2019 08:12 PM IST

India and Russia will jointly take down a ‘mock up’ terrorist base located in a third country as part of a first of its kind tri-service joint military exercise between the two counties which is to be held in India.

While the naval phase will be held at Goa, the land phase will be held at Babina, Jhansi a cantonment town in Uttar Pradesh with the Air Force assisting both phases of the operation. A mock up fictional country has been set up at Babina, Uttar Pradesh as part of the exercises.

“In this particular exercise, we are trying to look at being able to develop on a situation where you can try and weed out terrorism in a third country under the UN mandate. So we are trying to look at operating together in a situation in a third country,” said Major General Vijay Singh, the Overall Force Commander from the Indian side for the joint exercises.

Singh was speaking at a joint press conference in Goa on Friday.

“The navy will be training on how to prevent a couple of pirate ships coming and landing near the coastline and trying to smuggle weapons to the country we are helping out. The Air Force would assist them in identifying those pirate ships and if the pirates have taken over some territory momentarily for landing, then we could look at how those territories can be recaptured,” he said.

“All the components Air Force, Navy, Army , from our country and Russia, will operate together in trying to prevent the pirates to be successful in smuggling weapons. We will try and restore the situation in the country,” Singh said.

“There is one threat to us that is international terrorism in the 21st century so that is our common enemy. Whatever we gain out of this exercise can be used in fighting against terrorism,” Major General O Tsekov, who is leading the Russian military contingent, said.

“The Indian and Russian military is easy to interact with each other… and we can say that we even speak in one language. I’m impressed by their technical ability to understand everything. The operation itself is very complicated. Have the task assigned and achieving the goal that has been set by this exercise. The experience gained and skills developed by the Indian and Russian side can be used in normal practices also,” Tsekov added.

The naval phase of Exercise INDRA is being hosted by headquarters, Goa Naval area for which the Russian Naval ships arrived at Goa on December 10. The harbour phase of the exercise commenced on December 10, which includes formal calls, planning conferences, professional interactions and sports events.

The sea phase of the exercise will be held off Goa from December 16-19, in which INS Aditya, INS Tarkash, MiG29K fighter aircraft, maritime patrol aircraft and ship-borne helicopters would be participating from the Indian Navy.

The validation exercise will be conducted on December 18, wherein joint operations will be conducted along with Ghatak platoon of army, Mi 17, Su30s and Jaguars of the IAF, along with Russian Marine Infantry. We are confident that the skills earned by our personnel would help in execution of maritime operational tasks while promoting joint operations.

The aim of the exercise is to enhance interoperability and develop an understanding in order to effectively tackle common security challenges. INDRA initially began as a bilateral naval exercise between the Indian and Russian Federation navies in 2003. The exercise has now assumed a tri-service scope with corresponding maturity and gradual increase in complexity and level of participation.

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