India will host the first-ever India-Russia tri military service ties with Russia from December 10 to December 19, defence sources confirmed. The bilateral joint service exercise will witness company-sized mechanised contingents and transport aircraft. “It would involve eight tactical episodes involving the ground forces of both countries,” said Indian Army sources.
A joint planning conference is also being held from November 7 to 10, in two phases. Phase one of the conference was conducted at respective service locations of Babina, Pune and Goa to discuss service-specific modalities. The second phase is being held at New Delhi on November 9 and 10 to fine-tune joint service for smooth execution of the exercise.
The ‘Indra-2019’ is expected to enhance interoperability between both national armed forces to jointly undertake operations under the UN flag. “In light of the threat of global terrorism faced by both nations and by countries around the world the theme of the exercise is contemporary and relevant,” said the sources.
In October 2018, India inked the historic agreement worth US$5.43 billion with Russia to procure four S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile defence system. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also co-chaired the 19th India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military and Military-Technical Cooperation at Moscow from November 5 – 6.
Excellent discussions reconfirming special nature of India-Russia strategic partnership.— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) November 6, 2019
Had a wonderful meeting today with Russian Defence Minister General Sergey Shoigu in Moscow. Russia stands with India against terrorism and ready to further strengthen defence cooperation. pic.twitter.com/YMIZFZYffW
India and Russia have several major joint military programmes including BrahMos cruise missile programme, 5th generation fighter jet programme, Sukhoi Su-30MKI programme and KA-226T twin-engine utility helicopters. Between 2013 and 2018, Russia accounted for 62% of arms sales to India.
India also recently held tri military services with Uzbekistan named 'Dustlik-2019'. The Defence Minister assured Uzbekistan that India's armed forces are committed to providing all assistance and support in modernization and capacity building efforts of Uzbek Armed Forces.
(With ANI inputs)