India and Russia are currently finalizing the details of their joint military exercise called INDRA-2012 which will take place in Russia in the middle of this year. A high-level Indian delegation visited Russia earlier this week to discuss the details of the exercise and has surveyed the terrain where the joint exercises will be held.
The Indian military delegation was in Ulan Ude where they were received by top military officials in Russia’s Eastern Military District. The Indian Army troops will head for Russia in a few months to participate in INDRA-2012 exercise between the two armies. The INDRA-2012 exercise will unfold many tactical exercises by both the armies which include the use of state-of-the-art technology. Both armies will share battle experiences, tactics and techniques of combat in hostile situations.
India and Russia have conducted five of the INDRA-series joint ground and naval exercises since 2003 and the last one was held between in India in October 2010. Last year, Russia cancelled both INDRA-series ground and naval exercises despite an earlier announcement by the Russian General Staff that INDRA drills may be held every year and involve three branches of the armed forces. The naval exercise between the navies was cancelled since Russia had sent its ships for rescue operations in Tsunami-hit Japan.
Indian Army will hold around 15 military exercises this year with friendly foreign countries. The Indian Army stated that it will be engaging in a host of joint military drills with top nations such as US, Russia, France and neighborhood countries such as Singapore, Indonesia and Bangladesh. To begin with, India is engaging with armies of Singapore and Indonesia in war games to gain experience in counter insurgency and counter terrorism operations. A platoon-level 22-day exercise consisting of 30 troops would be held with the Indonesian Army at the Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare School (CIJWS) in Mizoram from February 12 this year. Following that, 'Bold Kurukshetra' with Singapore Army will be initiated in Jhansi, India in March. The two sides will field their mechanised forces in the training engagement.
The Indian Army troopers will also engage the US mechanised forces in the deserts of Rajasthan in the exercise 'Yudh Abhyas' in March this year. For the first time in Indo-US war games, the US will deploy their tanks outside their country and will also deploy around 200 men accompanied by armoured personnel carriers for the war games. In the previous ‘Yudh Abhyas’ in 2009, US brought its Stryker infantry armoured vehicles outside of its operational area to a foreign country. India is planning similar exercises with the armies of France as well.