India-Sri Lanka Joint Training Exercise Mitra Shakti 2017 culminates
The Fifth India-Sri Lanka Joint Training Exercise Mitra Shakti 2017 culminated on October 26, 2017 after a Joint Tactical Exercise and a Closing Ceremony which was held at Aundh Military Camp, Pune. 14 days of joint training that commenced on October 13, 2017 included understanding of transnational terrorism, developing interoperability and conduct of a joint tactical operation controlled by a Joint Command Post.
First Mahar Regiment of the Indian Army and Singha Regiment of Sri Lanka Army witnessed a Joint Tactical Exercise conducted at training area of Aundh Military Camp, Pune, on October 26, 2017 followed by the Closing Ceremony. The exercise involved insertion of troops by slithering from helicopters and destroying a terrorist hide out. It demonstrated the commitment of both the armies in working closely with each other to eradicate the menace of terrorism in all its forms.
Later, Brig Alok Chandra, VSM of Indian Army & Brig Ajith Pallawela, Rana Wikrama Paddakam, Rana Sura Padakam of Sri Lanka Army jointly reviewed the parade commanded by Major Manish Baral, Shaurya Chakra Commander of the Indian contingent.
Brig Alok Chandra, VSM, Head of observer delegation addressing the contingent said, "The exercise has nurtured an enormous bond amongst our troops, which will further augment the bilateral relations between both nations. Our Nation and our armies are on the forefront to address the threat of terrorism through our collective operational capability and this has been further enhanced through the joint exercise just conducted where in we have been able to exchange our tactical abilities on operations at the grass root level." Brig Ajith Pallawela, Rana Wikrama Paddakam, Rana Sura Padakam of Sri Lanka Army addressing the contingent said that the series of Mitra Shakti counter terrorism joint exercise has expanded the field of mutual corporation of the two armies, demonstrated the strong determination of both the countries against the threat of terrorism and has also emphasized on the good will that both the countries and the Armies jointly maintain, and declared the exercise closed.
The exercise was a grand success and has inculcated valuable lessons for the troops of both the countries. The camaraderie developed between the contingents during the course of exercise will assist in enhancing confidence between the two armies which may be called upon to grapple with Anti-Terrorism Operations. The conduct of these Bilateral Military Exercises is also an important step to uphold the values of Peace, Prosperity and Trust in the region.
- Wg Cdr SS Gangakhedkar