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Indian Navy's IL 38 SD aircraft carries out anti-ship missile firing

The IL 38 aircraft of Indian Navy

NEW DELHI (PTI): The Indian Navy's upgraded IL 38 long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft has carried out successful anti-ship missile firing in the Arabian Sea.

The firing was conducted on Wednesday as part of the ongoing annual Theater level Readiness and Operational Exercise (TROPEX-17) on the Western seaboard, Navy officials said.

The llyushin 38 Sea Dragon (IL 38 SD) is a long range maritime reconnaissance (LRMR) aircraft of Indian Navy.

"IL 38 SD aircraft has undertaken this maiden firing post modification and midlife upgrade, thereby demonstrating its highly potent Anti-Ship Missile (AShM) attack capability.

"The development ratifies Indian Navy's ability to ensure long range sea denial around Indian Sub-continent," the officials said.

The IL 38 SD aircraft are based at Goa and is placed under the Western Naval Command.

The Indian Navy is currently carrying out a mega exercise involving large number of strategic assets, including BRAHMOS missiles, Su-30 and Jaguar fighters and aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya.

The TROPEX is aimed at testing combat readiness of the combined fleets of the Indian Navy, and the assets of the Indian Air Force, Indian Army and the Indian Coast Guard.

The month-long exercise, which began on January 24, involved gunnery shoots, surface-to-air missile engagements, BRAHMOS firing and operations of the combined fleet in a complex multi threat environment, including sub surface and air threats.

The area of operations for TROPEX spans across the vast expanse of the Arabian Sea and North Central Indian Ocean and serves as an opportunity to validate the Indian Navy's Concepts of Operation.

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