The Japanese army today concluded the joint military exercise with the Indian army at India’s Northeastern province, in a state, which had once seen Chinese backed militant activities.
The first of such exercise with Japanese army, called the Dharma Guardian-2018, ended today at India’s poll bound state Mizoram. Duration of this exercise was two weeks— it began on November 1.
An Indian army spokesman said, “It’s a significant step towards fostering military and diplomatic ties between the two countries.”
Indeed it is a significant step with Japan, which of late is showing its intense desire to come up as a big military player to overtake its two “tense neighbours” North Korea and China.
Japanese constitution does not recognise the military strength of that country but Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, is all set to amend the constitution by 2020 and would like to put his country on the world map of the global defence capabilities, which is otherwise known as the fifth largest defence superpower unofficially.
Japan has decades old military ties with US under which America has the compulsion to protect Japan in regards to maritime defence, ballistic missile defence, domestic air control, communication security and disaster response operations.
It was for the first time Japan has engaged into a joint military exercise with Indian army and that too happened at heavily militarised Northeast India. Interestingly, Northeast was the place where Japanese forces were defeated during World War II because of their lack of knowledge about jungle warfare.
Surrounded by jungle, at Vairengte in Mizoram, the Japanese forces received fast training about jungle warfare and counter insurgency. However, despite loosing the second world war, Japanese forces had undertook necessary input about jungle warfare as well. Indian army has also learned the intelligence input gathering network of the Japanese army as well.
Said a spokesman, “The primary focus of the exercise was to train and equip the contingents to undertake joint counter insurgency and counter terrorists operations in urban and semi urban terrains.”
The officials say that the participants were initially familiarised with each other’s organisational structure, tactical drills and planning process before the joint tactical exercises.
Japanese were also trained on the wide spectrum of counter insurgency operations, including the joint training on weapons and equipment, field training exercise and handling of improved explosive devices. The defence ministry said that the operational exercise would open future cooperation between India and Japan.
On the day when Japanese forces are making a retreat after joint exercise, a 20 members Bangladesh military delegation team has arrived in North Bengal for a five day visit to various defence establishments in North Bengal falls under Trishakti Corps (33 corps) of India Army. The team proceeded to Indian army posts in Darjeeling.
“The purpose of the visit here is also to have a look at the military training given by the Indian Army. Bangladesh Army would be familiarized with the training in mountain warfare and will be shown various training institutes,” said an officer.
The eastern command of the Indian Army calls it a bonhomie between both the armies.
The bonhomie and cooperation developed through such visits would go a long way towards enhancing the spirit of mutual understanding and friendship in the years to come,” said a statement released by Fort William.