Army pulls out troops from Western Assam


The Indian Army has decided to pull out troops from the insurgency affected areas of Assam. The normalcy has returned in these areas, which once were the center of insurgency. These regions were under strict vigilance of the Army. With continuous efforts from the army and state police, the number of violent incidents have reduced to lowest in last three decades. Many companies were deployed at the western Assam region, which have now started to relocate. The Hatsingimari Army camp at South Salmara and the camp at Manachar has already been vacated. These camps have been handed over to the local civil administration and security forces.

Many ex-servicemen and local people were present when the troops were relocating from the region. This move was welcomed by the local population, and they were grateful for the Army for their contribution in bringing normalcy in the region. The ULFA and Bodo rebel groups were prominent in this region, which lacked in development and access to basic needs.  This region was beneficial for the rebels, owing to its proximity to the Bangladesh border.




Navies of India, France and UAE to attend Varuna Exercise


Indian Navy will attend the Varuna trilateral exercise in the Persian Gulf from 25th April 2021. France and United Arab Emirates (UAE) will be the other 2 participating countries. The exercise has been conducted by India and France from 1993, and this will be the first time that UAE will be attending it. It was named Varuna in 2001. The French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle, along with 2 frigates and a replenishment tanker, will participate in the exercise, and Indian Navy is expected to send 2 to 3 destroyer frigates in the exercise. INS Kolkata along with a P-8i maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft and an attack submarine is expected to represent the Indian side.

 The navies of India and France will conduct dual operations and complex manoeuvres in the Persian Gulf and North Arabian Sea. The interoperability skills of both the navies in sub surface, surface and aerial dimensions will be tested. The navy of UAE will participate in the war games. This exercise will enhance the strategic defence ties among the participating countries.

Indian Navy gets new squadron


Shripad Naik, the Union Minister of State for Defence, commissioned the Indian Naval Air Squadron (INAS) 323 into the Indian Navy on Monday. The squadron consists of indigenously built Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) Mk III aircraft. The ceremony was held at INS Hansa and was attended by Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, the Flag Officer Commanding in Chief of Western Naval Command.

The commissioning of INAS 323 symbolizes the spirit of Atmanirbhar Bharat and gives a major boost to the Make in India initiative of the Indian government. With this squadron, India has moved one step ahead in ensuring maritime security. 3 state of the art ALH Mk III multirole helicopters will be operated in this squadron. These helicopters are developed by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and are equipped with Shakti engine and all glass cockpit. This squadron will help the Indian Navy in conducting Search and Rescue (SAR), Coastal surveillance and Strategic operations. Indian Navy will procure 16 more helicopters that will be delivered in a phased manner.




Beyond Visual Range Drone tested by Indian Army


Indian Army, with the help of local administration, carried out tests for an indigenous Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) in Punjab. The UAV successfully delivered Covid-19 items in 3 villages of Abohar in Fazilka district of Punjab. The test was a part of anti-covid operations where masks, medical canister, liquid sanitisers and other essentials were supplied through this UAV. This will help the Indian Army in operation being conducted at distant places, even beyond the range of sight. The UAV can be controlled, by a remote or by another UAV flying above it. The villages that were covered in this operation lie at a distance of 25 km from the launch point. It is the first example in India when the essential items have been supplied through autonomous drones.

The UAV can also help the local administration in the tough times of the pandemic. The number of UAVs can be increased so more people can be benefitted with this concept. The endurance and payload of each UAV can also be enhanced and customized according to the needs. The operation was planned in such a way that no humans were contacted, the UAV reached the dropping point, dropped the payload, and successfully returned to its launch point. Release of the payload was a crucial point in this operation. It had to rover at a suitable height, before dropping the payload with pinpoint accuracy.




Indian Army tests Bulletproof version of Mahindra Scorpio


Mahindra, the prominent automobile supplier to the Indian Army, is planning to add a new version of Scorpio to its fleet of army vehicles. The Scorpio will be customized for warfare and peacetime needs.  Currently, it is undergoing road trials and is expected to be a part of the army soon. The main modification in this model of Scorpio is the addition of bulletproof windows. It can withstand the bullets of 7.62 mm fired from a range of 20 metres. This capability is similar to Mahindra Rakshak, which is already used by the armed forces. It is made up of ultra-hardened steel, aramid laminates and composite steel. Use of advanced high performance Polyethylene in production makes the vehicle capable to withstand grenade explosions. The newly developed Scorpio will have provisions to fire assault rifles from small holes placed next to the bulletproof windows.

The engine of the vehicle is designed to deliver high torque and power. It is expected to be more agile and capable of tackling off road conditions with optimum payload. It is also expected to get fire proof fuel tanks, 360 degree camera and run flat tyres. Apart from Scorpio, Indian Army uses Bolero, 550 DXB and Rakshak vehicles manufactured by Mahindra.