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India, US to hold combat exercise in April

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Marines with 1st Platoon, Echo Co., Battalion Landing Team 2/4, and soldiers with India Army's Alpha Co., 21st Battalion, The Punjab Regiment, participate in rock climb training during Exercise Shatrujeet 06. A U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Cpl Thomas J. Grove.

NEW DELHI (BNS): India and US will hold another joint military exercise called “Shatrujeet” focusing on counter-terrorism, in California next month, a media report said.

Indian soldiers numbering around 150-200 will soon be leaving for US to take part in the exercise from April 1 to 19; the Times of India quoted defence ministry sources as saying on Thursday.

India had hosted the largest-ever ground combat exercise with US, called `Yudh Abhyas', at Babina last October, where US had showcased its Stryker infantry armoured vehicles and Javelin anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) during the combat manoeuvres.

The deployment of the Stryker armoured fighting alongside a formation of the Indian armoured corps suggests the level and intensity of the exercise being scaled up.

India and US has carried out over 50 joint combat exercises in the last seven years as part of the Indo-US Defense Cooperation for sharing useful experience in peace keeping operations, humanitarian and disaster relief situations.

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