What is the significance of Indian participation in International military exercises? What are the advantages of our participation? Mention a few military exercises conducted by India.
In the domain of international relations, military diplomacy has, in recent years, emerged as a major tool to further diplomatic interests of nations.
Participation in international level military exercises is an indication of the highest level of trust and confidence between the member nations.
It is a key confidence building measure (CBM).
It is an indication of the faith reposed by India on another nation or a group of member nations.
On the operational side, military exercises enable militaries to understand each other’s drills and procedures,
Overcome language barriers.
Facilitate familiarisation with equipment capabilities.
It also facilitates understanding and familiarisation with new technologies that other countries may be utilising and enables on-the-job training of each other’s crews. This is particularly useful in the event of joint operations whether in war or in operations other than war (OOTW) - humanitarian aid, disaster relief, anti-piracy, etc – when nations come together for a common cause. A fine example was the aid assistance provided by a host of nations during the tsunami in South East Asia where a massive land, air and sea rescue effort was successfully executed to provide relief to the affected countries.
Perhaps, the most important advantage of joint military exercises is ‘strategic signalling’. A joint exercise with one or more nations serves the purpose of signalling to a third country of the influence we have in the region and a demonstration of our resolve to further our diplomatic objectives.
On the intangible side, military exercises promote brotherhood and camaraderie between soldiers and militaries.
Besides goodwill, it is a tool for projection of a nation’s soft power – culture, language, customs, beliefs, food habits and lifestyle. Soldiers all over the world have almost similar rank and organisational structures, which helps establish a unique spirit of bonding and friendship between their communities irrespective of the country of origin.
Military exercises conducted by India.
India-France Joint Military ‘Exercise Shakti – 2016’: ‘Exercise Shakti-2016’ is the seventh edition in the series of bilateral exercises.
India-Nepal Combined Military Training ‘Exercise Surya Kiran IX’
India–Indonesia Joint Training ‘Exercise Garuda Shakti IV’ it is the fourth edition of the joint exercise.
‘Exercise Force -18’, the largest ground forces multinational field training exercise on ‘Humanitarian Mine Action and Peacekeeping Operations’
‘Exercise Jalrahat’: As a step towards achieving the goals of National Disaster Management Plan 2016 released by the Prime Minister on 1 June and with the outlines of identifying high risk disaster areas and coordination between the Armed Forces, NDRF and State Disaster Management Agencies along with other State Emergency services, a mock exercise and demonstration under ‘Exercise Jalrahat’ was conducted on 29 June in Shantipur area of Guwahati on the banks of the Brahmaputra River.
‘Exercise Maitree’: A joint exercise of the Indian Army and Royal Thailand Army.
‘Exercise YudhAbhyas’: As part of the continuing Indo - US defence cooperation, it is the 12thedition of the joint military training.
India -Kazakhstan Joint Exercise: As a part of India’s continued efforts to strengthen Indo-Kazakh relations, Armies of the two countries conducted a joint exercise.
‘Exercise Indra – 2016’: Indo-Russian eight edition of Joint Exercise.
‘Sino - Indian Joint Exercise’: As part of the ongoing initiative to enhance interaction and cooperation between India and China, under the provisions of the Border Defence Cooperation Agreement, 2013, the Indian and Chinese armies held their Second Joint Exercise ‘Sino India Cooperation 2016’.