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India-France Joint Military Exercise SHAKTI Kicks Off in Meghalaya

Umroi: The 7th edition of the India-France Joint Military Exercise SHAKTI commenced today at Umroi, marking the beginning of a two-week-long training event aimed at enhancing the joint military capabilities of both nations. The exercise, scheduled from 13th to 26th May 2024, is being conducted at a fully developed and modern Foreign Training Node in Meghalaya.

The Opening Ceremony of Exercise SHAKTI saw the presence of distinguished guests, including H.E. Thierry Mathou, Ambassador of France to India, and Major General Prasanna Sudhakar Joshi, General Officer Commanding 51 Sub Area. This biennial training event, alternately conducted in India and France, last took place in France in November 2021.

The Indian contingent, comprising 90 personnel, primarily represents a Battalion of the RAJPUT Regiment, alongside personnel from other arms and services. Observers from the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force are also part of the exercise. On the other hand, the French contingent, also consisting of 90 personnel, is predominantly represented by personnel from the 13th Foreign Legion Half-Brigade (13th DBLE).

Exercise SHAKTI aims to enhance joint military capabilities to undertake multi-domain operations in a Sub Conventional scenario under Chapter VII of the United Nations Mandate. The exercise will focus on operations in semi-urban and mountainous terrain, with objectives including achieving a high degree of physical fitness, refining tactical drills, and sharing best practices.

Tactical drills to be practiced during the exercise include responding to terrorist actions, establishing joint command posts and intelligence centers, securing helipads, conducting small team insertions and extractions, and employing drones and counter-drone systems, among others.

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