Indian, UK Air Forces Commence Exercise Indradhanush at AFS Hindan

The Indian Air Force (IAF) and the UK Royal Air Force (RAF) jointly commenced the fifth edition of Exercise Indradhanush at Air Force Station Hindan (also AFS Hindon) on Feb. 24.

Exercise INDRADHANUSH is part of an ongoing bi-lateral UK/Indian Air Force exercise program that commenced in 2013 with previous iterations involving fast jet, air transport, and force protection personnel both in India and the UK.

The focus of this edition of the exercise is ‘Base Defence and Force Protection’. This theme is of significance considering the recent threats to military establishments from terror elements. Ex Indradhanush provides a platform for the IAF and RAF to share and jointly validate strategies and tactics to counter terror threats to their installations.

The RAF team comprises of 36 specialized combatants of the RAF Regiment while the IAF will comprise of 42 combatants of the Garud Commando Force. Both teams will execute missions based on jointly worked out plans and scenarios. Both sides would also exercise specialized weapons, equipment and vehicles and validate joint employability.

Special missions would encompass Airfield Seizure, Base Defence and anti-terror operations in Urban built-up zones. These exercises would include para drops from C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, tactical insertions by Mi-17 V5 helicopters and use of various airborne sensors.

The IAF, as well as the RAF, would gain significantly from each other’s operational experience, training philosophies, contemporary technologies and best practices followed. A few social, sports and cultural events have been interspersed during the exercise to enhance bonhomie and mutual understanding. The exercise would formally conclude on Feb. 29.

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