India, Russia begin joint military drills

The 'Indra-2010' will formally kick-start from tomorrow and go on till October 12 when battalion-sized troops will test their skills in anti-insurgency operations at the military station there, Defence Ministry officials said here.

The exercise will comprise infantry troops from both the armies, who would work out insurgency and terrorism situations apart from planning and executing operations to counter these threat scenarios, particularly in a mountainous terrain, they said.
Other elements from both the armies include observers, air elements and representatives from the defence ministries of both countries.

The Russian team included 257 personnel and the Indian side is represented by an infantry battalion.Indra-2010 is intended to enhance defence cooperation and military-to-military relations between the two armies, they said.

The first of the 'Indra' exercise series was conducted in India in October 2005 and the second was held in Russia in 2007. Since then the two armies have not held an exercise under the series for the past three years.

The Indo-Russian Army exercise comes soon after an inter-governmental commission for military and technical cooperation headed by the Defence Ministers of both the countries meeting in Delhi last week, when the Indra-series joint training was cited as an example of the growing relations between the two sides

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