The joint military exercise between India and Sri Lanka culminated on Tuesday at the Southern Command Foreign Training Node, Aundh in Pune. Joint army drills are a key component of military diplomacy between countries across the world. They have emerged as a crucial tool for building rapport, confidence, and trust within the Armies, all of which might be helpful in the future for combined military operations like UN peacekeeping missions.
According to an official release, Brigadier S Taluja, Commander Aundh Military Station and Major General PGPS Rathnayaka RWP, RSP, NDC, Srilankan Army addressed the contingents during the closing ceremony, commending them for the immaculate drills and procedures practised and learnt during the exercise. The contingents from both nations displayed great enthusiasm and professionalism during the joint drills.
The camaraderie developed between the contingents during the course of the exercise will certainly assist in enhancing confidence between the armies, which may be deployed together for such operations, the release stated further.
“The conduct of this military exercise is also an important step to uphold the values of Peace, Prosperity, International Brotherhood and Trust which is in line with Security and Growth for all in the Region,” it added. The Indian contingent of 120 personnel was represented mainly by troops from the Maratha Light Infantry regiment while the Sri Lankan side was represented by personnel from the 53 Infantry Division.
As many as 15 personnel from the Indian Air Force and five personnel from the Sri Lankan Air Force also participated in the exercise, according to the release issued by the Ministry of Defence (MoD). The exercise’s aim was to jointly rehearse the conduct of subconventional operations under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. The scope of the exercise included synergising joint responses during counter-terrorist operations.
Both India and Sri Lanka practised tactical actions such as raid, search and destroy missions, heliborne operations, etc. In addition, Army Martial Arts Routine (AMAR), combat reflex shooting and yoga also formed a part of the exercise curriculum.