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Army conducts airborne exercise along border in eastern Ladakh

This comes in the backdrop of India's military standoff with China in the region for nearly 18 months.

India and China are both ramping up infrastructure along the entire Line of Actual Control (LAC) across all sectors.

The Army is conducting aerial exercises close to the border in eastern Ladakh to induct troops in high-altitude zones and validate its rapid response capabilities.

This comes in the backdrop of India’s military standoff with China in the region for nearly 18 months.

Sources said the Army’s Shatrujeet Brigade is conducting “an airborne insertion along the northern borders in eastern Ladakh to validate its Rapid Response Capabilities, as part of an airborne exercise and combat manoeuvres”.

On Monday, the airborne troops were inserted at a drop zone at an altitude of more than 14,000 feet, it is learnt.

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Sources said the troops had been pre-acclimatised. They said the troops, “along with specialist vehicles and missile detachments, were transported via C-130 and AN 32 aircraft from five different mounting bases to validate inter-theatre move, precision stand-off drops, rapid grouping and capture of designated objectives with speed and surprise”.

The drop at such an altitude, and with winter setting in, was “particularly challenging due to the low temperatures” — the mercury dipped to minus 20 degrees Celsius — and the atmosphere is rarefied at super-high-altitude terrain.

“The exercise also involves conduct of Oxygen Combat Free Fall jumps and integrated battle drills by airborne forces, mechanised columns and attack helicopters, validating capabilities and seamless integration,” sources said.

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India and China are both ramping up infrastructure along the entire Line of Actual Control (LAC) across all sectors. Even as the standoff in eastern Ladakh continues, China has increased patrolling, including area domination patrols in the eastern sector as well, since 2020. India has also raised its defence along the entire LAC.

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First published on: 02-11-2021 at 02:26:24 am
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