Indian Army Training Exercises and Events 2017: A Review

Now the time has come that we bid adieu to 2017 and welcome a refreshing 2018 with fresh vigor and new goals. The things which were not achieved last year, we try to do them the first thing next year. Our achievements might have been many, but Indian Army, in particular did not stop from doing its duty all time alike. There were many soldiers who missed Diwali with their families, there were soldiers who said goodbye to their loved ones and the world. There were soldiers, who joined the force bringing new light of hope with them. And they will continue to do this year and all the years to come – putting service before self in the line of duty. Let us rewind an year and go through Indian Army’s 2017:

MILITARY EXERCISES

  1. AL NAGAH:

Second edition of Indo – Oman Joint Military Exercise ‘AL NAGAH’, the joint exercise between the Indian and Oman Armies was held at Bakloh, Himachal Pradesh from 06 – 19 March 17. Both armies shared valuable combat expertise on countering terrorist operations in an international environment.

  1. SURYA KIRAN – XI:

Indo – Nepal Joint Military Exercise ‘SURYA KIRAN – XI’ was held from 07–20 March 17 at Pithoragarh. An infantry battalion of Indian Army and Durga Bahsh Battalion of Nepalese Army participated. Eleventh such battalion level exercise between the two countries aimed at training of troops in counter insurgency operations in mountainous terrain. It formally incorporated issues related to humanitarian assistance and disaster Relief (HADR) and helped enhance defence co-operation and military relations between two countries.

  1. Indo – Mongolian Joint Military Exercise:

Twelfth edition of Indo – Mongolian Joint Military Exercise ‘NOMADIC ELEPHANT’ was held at Vairengte from 05 – 18 April 2017. Mongolian Army was represented by soldiers of the elite Special Forces Task Battalion while Indian Army was represented by a contingent of the Jammu & Kashmir Rifles. The exercise was aimed at training the troops in counter insurgency & counter terrorism operations under the United Nations mandate. The joint training laid emphasis on conducting operations by a joint subunit, comprising of troops from both the armies, in adverse operational conditions aimed at enhancing the interoperability between the two armies.

  1. SURYA KIRAN – XII:

Indo – Nepal Joint Military Exercise ‘SURYA KIRAN – XII’ was conducted in Rupandehi, Nepal from 03 – 17 September 17. The battalion level exercise focused on counter terrorism operations in mountainous terrain.

  1. YUDH ABHYAS – 2017:

As part of the ongoing Indo-US defence cooperation, a joint military training, Indo – US Joint Military Exercise ‘YUDH ABHYAS – 2017’ was conducted at Joint Base Lewis, McChord, Washington, USA from 14 – 27 September 17.The theme of the exercise was to build and develop military relations and inter-operability for conducting counter terrorism, regional security operations and peace keeping operations under UN Charter.

  1. MITRA SHAKTI 2017:

The fifth Indo-Sri Lanka Joint Training Exercise ‘MITRA SHAKTI 2017’ was conducted at Aundh Military Station, Pune from 13- 26 October 2017. The exercise focused on counter terrorism operations in semi urban terrain.

  1. INDRA:

First ever tri service exercise ‘INDRA’ between India & Russia was conducted in Vladivostok, Russia from 19 – 29 October 2017. The 11 day exercise was conducted in 249th Combined Army Range, Sergeevisky and in the Sea of Japan near Vladivostok.

  1. PRABAL DOSTYK – 2017:

A fourteen day Indo – Kazakhstan Joint Military Exercise training exercise ‘PRABAL DOSTYK – 2017’ between the Indian Army and the Kazakhstan Army was conducted at Bakloh, Himachal Pradesh from 02 – 15 November 17. The training contingents comprised of platoon strength from the 11th Gorkha Rifles of the Indian Army and a similar strength of the Kazakhstan Army.

  1. SAMPRITI:

Indo-Bangladesh Exercise ‘SAMPRITI’ was conducted at CIJW School, Vairengte from 06-18 November 2017. It was aimed at carrying out operations against terrorists and insurgents on the lines of those in the J&K and NE.

  1. AJEYA WARRIOR:

Indo – UK Exercise ‘AJEYA WARRIOR’ was conducted at Mahajan Field Firing Rangesin Bikaner, Rajasthan from 01 – 14 December 2017.The training contingent comprised of one company each from the Indian Army and British Army. The aim of the exercise was to build and promote bilateral relations and enhance interoperability while sharing experiences in counter terrorism and counter insurgency operations between the two countries.

  1. Exercise ‘Pralay Sahayam’:

    The exercise was conceptualised as HADR exercise based on an urban flooding scenario in the twin cities of Hyderabad & Secunderabad. It was conducted by the Bison Division under the aegis of Sudharshan Chakra Corps with assistance from Government of Telangana on 22 – 23 September 2017. The Exercise synergised the efforts of all stakeholders (Army/Navy/Air Forces / NDRF / civil administration / CAPFs / other civil agencies) to assess the effectiveness of the plans, organisational skills and decision support system at each stage of the flood relief effort.

 HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE AND DISASTER RELIEF

  1. Rajasthan & Gujarat Floods (July 17):

Army columns were deployed for rescue and relief operations during flash flood in Barmer, Pali and Jalore districts of Rajasthan.Army columns were also deployed for rescue and relief operations during flash flood in North Gujarat. Army columns rescuedmore than 500 school girls and teachers from Ambedkar Girls Hostel, Baiswada, Gujarat. The Army personnel from Dhrangdhara Military Station carried out a daring rescue operation in aid to civil authorities in village Kuda and Thakur Jati, DistrictSurendranagar, Gujarat and rescued the villagers who were stranded in water logged areas due to heavy rains.

  1. Bihar & UP Floods (Aug 17):

Army columns were deployed for rescue and relief operations in the devastated flood affected areas of Bihar’s Madhubani, Sitamarhi, Gopalganj and Muzzafarpur districts. Army columns were able to reach out to over 75 villages, rescued about 1000 people and distributed food, supplies, rescue and relief material in these areas. In UP, Army columns including Army helicopters were deployed for providing relief material in the eastern region.

  1. Flag March, Sirsa:

18 Army columns were deployed for maintaining law &order during August 17.

SPORTS & ADVENTURE

  1. Gold Medal at the ISSF World Cup 2017:

Subedar Jitu Rai along with Heena Sidhu brought laurels to the Nation by winning Gold Medal in the mixed team 10 meter Air Pistol event at the ISSF World Cup 2017.

  1. Race Around Austria (RAA):

Lieutenant Colonel Bharat Kumar made the country and Indian Army proud by becoming the first Indian to finish the Race Around Austria (RAA), the toughest endurance cycling race in Europe in the month of August 2017. The officer is presently holding two titles of Super Randonneur. Randonneuring is a long-distance, unsupported, non-competitive cycling within prescribed time limits.

  1. Asian Gymnastics Championship:

The 10th Acrobatic Gymnastics Asian Championship was held at Almaty, Kazakhstan in Sepetember 2017. One coach and seven players of Army Node Gymnastic Team represented India in the championship and won Bronze medal for the first time of Indian gymnastic history.

  1. Cadet Asian Wrestling Championship:

The event was held at Bangkok, Thailand from 20 – 23 July 2017. A total of 19 Countries including India participated in this Championship. Two wrestlers (Free Style) of Boys Sports Company, Army Sports Institute, Pune formed a part of 10 wrestlers of Free Style and 10 wrestlers of Greeco Roman in the contingent of India. Sports Cadet Aakash won Gold medal and Sports Cadet Praveen won Bronze medal in this championship. Indian contingent was placed second in this championship.

  1. Asian Athletics Championship 2017:

The Indian Army athletes brought laurels by winning four Gold, two Silver and two Bronze Medals in 22nd Asian Athletics Championship 2017 which was held at Bhubaneshwar (Odisha) in July 2017. 13 Athletes from Mission Olympic Wing of Indian Army participated in the championship.

  1. Asian Grand Prix Series 1 at China:

Naib Subedar Neeraj Chopra and Naib Subedar Jinson Johnson added another feather to their cap by winning Silver Medals in their respective events of Javelin and 800 meters in Athletics during Asian Grand Prix Series in China on 24 April 17.

  1. Para Athletics Grand Prix:

Naib Subedar Anandan won Silver Medal in 9th Fazza World Para Athletics Grand Prix, Dubai held on 21 March 2017.

MISCELLANEOUS EVENTS

  1. National Integration Tours:

As part of the Indian Army’s ongoing outreach programme to foster the spirit of National Integration across the entire swathe of the country various tours were organised. A tour for 20 school students from various schools of Imphal, Manipur in January 17, tour for 16 Girls from the remote town of Gingle, Uri , J&K in May 17, tour for 20 school students from Biamah in Leh in September 17 and tour for 20 students from Chirang district of Assam in October 17. The aim of tours was to provide an insight into the rich cultural heritage, developments in others parts of the country and also provide an opportunity to meet prominent personalities of our Nation.

  1. Army’s Super – 40 Initiative (J&K):

Army’s Super – 40 initiative for coaching the J&K youth for Engineering Entrance Exams broke all previous records when 26 boys and two girls from the state cracked the IIT-JEE Mains Exam 2017.  Nine students successfully qualified the IIT Advanced Exam, the results of which were declared on 11 June 17.

  1. Colour Presentation to Armoured Corps Centre and School:

The Hon’ble President of India and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, Shri Pranab Mukherjee awarded the prestigious President’s Standards to Armoured Corps Centre and School, during a grand Ceremonial Parade held at Ahmednagar on 15 April 2017. The rare honour has been bestowed upon Armoured Corps Centre and School in recognition of commendable service rendered as a Flagship Mechanised Warfare Institution, providing excellent world class training to all ranks of Indian Army as also to all ranks from the friendly foreign countries.

  1. Colour Presentation to Armoured Regiments:

General Bipin Rawat, COAS, on behalf of the Hon’ble President of India, presented the ‘President’s Standard’ to 87 Armoured Regiment, 41 Armoured Regiment and 10 Armoured Regiment at Suratgarh Military Station on 05 December 2017.

  1. Colour Presentation to Infantry Battalions:

General Bipin Rawat, COAS, presented the President’s Colours to 23 MARATHA Light Infantry and 24 MARATHA Light Infantry at the MARATHA Light Infantry Regimental Centre, Belgaum on 03 Nov 17.

  1. Signing of MoU between Indian Army and Jamia Millia Islamia:

Indian Army and Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), New Delhi recorded their mutual intent for academic collaboration, technical advancement and progression of Army Personnel, in a MoU signed on 28 Sep 2017. It would facilitate admission of defence personnel in second or third year Graduation/Post Graduation/Doctorate programme through the medium of distance learning. This would enable soldiers to enhance their academic qualification for a better future.

  1. Empowering the Soldier by Project Yash Vidya:

A MoU was signed between Indian Army and Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YCMOU), Nasik on 21 Sep 2017 at New Delhi for a Bachelor’s degree Programme designed for the Army Personnel, giving special recognition to the in-service training/Army courses completed by providing exemption from studying certain courses. The University will award Diploma in Self Empowerment and a Bachelors Degree in Arts or Commerce under Project Yash Vidyaenabling them with academic qualifications for better future.

  1. Vijay Diwas celebrations:

In order to keep alive the spirit of War of Liberation of 1971 an arrangement of reciprocal visit by Muktijodhas and War Veterans was institutionalised in 2005. A delegation of Muktijodhas along with their spouses or companions is invited by the Govt of India to participate in the Vijay Diwas celebrations that are held at Fort Williams, Kolkata. Same was held under the aegis of Eastern Command. Government of Peoples Republic of Bangladesh also invites Indian war veterans along with their spouses or companions to participate in Victory day celebration.Twenty seven war veterans & four serving officers participated in the celebration in Bangladesh from 14 to 19 Dec 2017.

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