Exercise Indra 2017, the first tri-service exercise between India and Russia, entered its final phase today, wherein the Task Force comprising of Armoured, Mechanised Infantry and Infantry elements, ably supported by Fighter Aircrafts and Armed Helicopters successfully extricated a humanitarian aid convoy from a terrorist attack. A terrorist attack on a humanitarian aid convoy was simulated as per the exercise setting. The humanitarian assistance was aimed for trapped civilians in a counter insurgency environment under UN mandate. The attack tested the response mechanism of the Combined Task Force of Indian and Russian Defence Forces. The terrorists were successfully isolated and the humanitarian aid convoy was escorted to safety. Simultaneously, Fighter Aircrafts and Armed Helicopters pulverized the target in an exceptional display of firepower while Artillery elements comprising of 122mm GRAD and howitzers further softened the target. Armoured Tanks closed in on the target along with Mechanised Infantry elements and cordoned off the entire area, and the stage was set for the Infantry to launch the final assault.
Later, speaking to the media, Maj Gen ND Prasad, the Task Force Commander of the Indian contingent expressed his happiness at the professional synergy displayed during the entire exercise not only between the Air force, Navy and the Army elements of the Indian Defence Forces, but also between the Indian and Russian Defence Forces, in spite of constraints of different language. He stated that the manner in which the exercise is being conducted between India and Russia is a reflection of the high level of professionalism of both sides and that the exercise has proved to be a great learning ground. Rear Admiral Biswajit Dasgupta, the Naval Component Leader and Air Commodore RGK Kapoor, the Air Force Component Leader reiterated that the synergy on display between the three services of both sides has reinforced the importance of tri-service cooperation and is the harbinger of things to come in future operations.
The last drill of Exercise Indra 2017 will be carried out on 28 Oct 2017 when the amphibious landing will take place wherein landing of ground forces at Cape of Klerk training area will be undertaken by Indian and Russian Naval Elements with Air Support.
Earlier, the active sea phase of Naval component commenced on 26 November in the Sea of Japan. For the last few days personnel of both the countries were put through various tactical and operational manoeuvres. They displayed high levels of professionalism and the exercise has generated an outstanding level of professional synergy and understanding of each other’s doctrines, concepts and methodology of execution of operations.
The Air Force component undertook various practice missions by combined Indo-Russian crew in Fighters, Transport and Helicopters during the training phase. These aircraft formed an integral part in the Joint Ops that was undertaken today and will also provide Air Support for tomorrow’s amphibious landing mission.
The exercise will culminate on 29th October in a grand closing ceremony which will be held at Vladivostok.