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Bimstec Milex 2018: Camaraderie, counter-terrorism operations on strong footing

The inaugural multinational exercise is currently underway at the Aundh Military Station in Pune.

pune Updated: Sep 19, 2018 17:21 IST
Shivani S
Shivani S
Hindustan Times, Pune
Bimstec Milex 2018,indian army,join military exercise
Jungle training shooting and precision practice at BIMSTEC, a joint military exercise organised at Maratha LI, Aundh.(Ravindra Joshi/HT PHOTO)

Despite the initial hiccup of Nepal not participating and Thailand only sending in observers for the Bimstec Milex 2018, the progress of exercise is on a strong footing.

Bimstec (Bay of Bengal initiative for multi-sectoral technical and economic cooperation) nations have sent in troops to participate in the first joint training exercise with the focus of fighting terrorism at the transnational level.

The inaugural multinational exercise is currently underway at the Aundh Military Station in Pune.

The training has so far successfully increased camaraderie among the troops of the participating nations.

“This exercise not only gave us opportunities to exchange our cultures but will also help us operate efficiently and swiftly, in the future, if any of our nations face a threat,” said Major Tshering Tobgay of the Bhutan contingent.

In a glimpse of what members of the contingents go through every day during the exercise, troops showcased room intervention operations, cordon and search operations (CASO) and tactical exercises on the ground like handling and neutralisation of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on Friday.

The participating contingents are given detailed lecture cum demonstrations and then moved on to the field for practice rounds.

Language is a hindrance for many of the south-east Asian country members, but officers double up as interpreters to help understand the tactics, said an official close to the training team.

At the foreign training node on Friday, cordon and search operations, raid on terrorist hideouts, intelligence gathering ops, and hostage rescue operations were demonstrated by the troops.

Troops also carried out a demonstration of precision shooting at the jungle lane shooting range as they moved through a thick jungle lane.

A specialised training on hostage rescue by slithering from Mi-17 helicopters was also showcased, along with room intervention drills by participating nations.

“It is important to timely conduct joint training exercises in order to counter terrorist operations and Milex 2018 is a great opportunity to share our knowledge, experiences and thoughts with troops of participating nations,” said Major Nalaka of the Sri Lankan contingent.

The joint exercise will culminate on September 16, 2018, with a validation exercise and a closing ceremony. The chief guest for the event will be Subhash Bhamre, minister of state for defence.

First Published: Sep 15, 2018 15:00 IST