PIB Delhi: A large-scale tri-service joint amphibious exercise AMPHEX – 21 was conducted in Andaman & Nicobar group of islands from 21 – 25 Jan 2021. The exercise involved participation of Naval ships, amphibious troops of the Army and different types of aircraft from the Air force.
The exercise was aimed at validating India’s capabilities to safeguard the territorial integrity of it’s island territories. It also sought to enhance operational synergy and joint warfighting capabilities amongst the three Services.
The exercise involved multi-faceted maritime operations by synergised employment of amphibious assault ships, surveillance platforms, execution of maritime air strikes and complex manoeuvres at sea. Airborne insertion of Marine Commandos of Navy and Special Forces of the Army, naval gunfire support, amphibious landing of forces and follow-on operations also formed part of the exercise.
Ex KAVACH for defence of Andaman & Nicobar Islands formed a part of AMPHEX – 21. A joint intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance exercise under the aegis of HQ Integrated Defence Staff was also run concurrently to achieve Maritime Domain Awareness by employment of a multitude of sensors.
As part of shaping the battle field, MARCOS along with their combat loads and Air Droppable Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats (ADR) were dropped over the Andaman Sea, enabling the Marine Commandos reach the target with stealth and speed. MI-17 V5 Armed Helicopters undertook precision targeting against designated enemy assets at sea and on land.
The training exercise culminated with the beach landing operations by elements of Amphibious Brigade of Southern Command from INS Jalashwa, Airavat, Guldar and LCU MK-4 class of ships with 600 troops along with tanks, troop carrier vehicles and other heavy weapons. The logistic team demonstrated and validated the joint logistic system and its capabilities to respond to dynamic changes in operational situations and combat missions. The areas in which the exercise was conducted holds strategic significance for India.
The exercise also validated joint capabilities of intelligence gathering from space, air, land and sea based assets, its synthesis, analysis and near real time sharing to achieve battle field transparency for quick decision making. The joint force executed multi-domain, high intensity offensive and defensive manoeuvres in the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal. The tri-services exercise fine-tuned joint war fighting capabilities and Standard Operating Procedures towards enhancing operational synergy.
Commander-in-Chief Andaman and Nicobar Command visited the exercise area in the Southern Group of Islands to oversee the exercise and commended all Ranks for the high level of operational preparedness.