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The Shatrujeet Brigade, based in Agra, took part in a significant multi-domain exercise with the tri-services of the Andaman and Nicobar Command on Wednesday to practice its rapid reaction capabilities on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the Army announced on Thursday.

The high-intensity exercise, conducted in collaboration with the Indian Air Force and the Navy, assessed the jointness and interoperability among the Special Forces of the three services. It involved responding to various plans and contingencies in realistic tactical environments.

According to the Army, the paratroopers departed from Agra and landed with precision on a remote island of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands from C130 J Super Hercules aircraft of the IAF during the early hours of Wednesday.

The exercise also included the validation and use of specialized equipment, combat free fall jumps, and ground-based maneuvers.

Sources from the defense sector stated that the airborne insertion of Special Forces in island territories is a crucial skill needed to manage contingencies in the island chains of territorial India and to support neighboring nations.

The Andaman and Nicobar Islands hold high strategic importance for India due to their proximity to the Indo-Pacific and major sea lines of communication (SLOC) in the Bay of Bengal.

Furthermore, a defense source mentioned that the joint operation with the special forces of the IAF and Navy provides cohesiveness of operating in theaterized domains.

The Indian military has established the tri-service Armed Forces Special Operations Division (AFSOD) in which the special forces of the three services train together.

In 2021, the Shatrujeet Brigade conducted an airborne insertion of troops close to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh at an altitude of over 14,000 ft to validate its rapid response capabilities as part of an airborne exercise and combat maneuvers.

The three services have been conducting numerous joint exercises recently. Last month, the Army and the IAF jointly carried out a multi-domain air-land exercise called Vayu Prahar close to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the northeast.

In February, the Army conducted the Trishakti Prahar, a joint training exercise, close to the strategic Siliguri Corridor in North Bengal, with all arms and services of the Army, the IAF, and the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) participating.

Shatrujeet BrigadeShatrujeet Brigade

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