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Russia-India drills to involve Army, Navy and Air Force for first time

April 19, 19:12 UTC+3 NEW DELHI

The drills include joint maneuvers by warships and anti-terror exercises of ground forces

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© Yuri Smityuk/TASS

NEW DELHI, April 19. /TASS/. India and Russia will hold Indra joint military exercises that will involve troops of three armed services from both countries, the Indian Defense Ministry reported on Wednesday.

"The Indra bilateral drills will for the first time be held with the participation of servicemen and military hardware of the Army, the Air Force and the Navy. This is the first instance when all the three armed services of the Armed Forces will take part in the joint drills," a spokesman for the Indian Defense Ministry told journalists.

According to the Defense Ministry’s data, the scenario of the forthcoming drills has already been preliminarily discussed. Representatives of the Russian and Indian Defense Ministries will soon hold another two meetings "to complete planning for Indra-2017 expanded maneuvers."

The Indian Defense Ministry also noted that "India’s Finance and Defense Minister Arun Jaitley will visit Russia on April 25-26 as part of the expected expansion of military contacts between the two countries." He will hold a number of negotiations and take part in the 6th Moscow conference on security.

Indra Russian-Indian military exercises have been held since 2003. They aim to practice interaction among servicemen of both countries. The drills include joint maneuvers by warships and anti-terror exercises of ground forces. The drills were held irregularly (alternately with the participation of ground and naval forces) until 2013.

Since 2014, the drills have been held annually and involve ground and naval phases.

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