EXERCISE AJEYA WARRIOR 2023
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- India and the United Kingdom will soon begin the seventh edition of the bilateral training exercise Ajeya Warrior 2023.
- The Ajeya Warrior Exercise is a combined military drill, designed to provide company-level joint training focused on counter-terrorism operations in urban and semi-urban settings.
- The 6th edition of the India-UK Joint Company Level Military Training Ajeya Warrior exercise took place in Chaubatia, Uttarakhand in 2021.
- In 2013, the first military training took place.
- The exercise is part of an initiative to develop interoperability and share expertise with friendly foreign nations.
- It aims to provide pieces of training to the soldiers of both nations in counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism operations and has proved to be an excellent strategy for strengthening the ties between them.
Recent developments in India UK defence relations
- India and the UK are set to enhance defence industrial cooperation and work together in co-development and co-production of military platforms.
- Both countries in 2022 had the inaugural meeting of the newly formed Joint Working Group in an effort to further defence cooperation.
- This has been set up to strengthen security and defence partnership through industrial cooperation.
- UK has issued its first Open General Export License in the Indo-Pacific region to India. This will help in shortening delivery times for defence procurement.
- In 2022, British High Commissioner to India has stated that a stronger UK-India defence relationship is an essential element of the governments of both sides’ Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
- In critical defence technologies the UK is considered to be a world leader especially in jet engines development and electric propulsion technology and the UK has expressed its readiness to share this expertise with India supported by respective industries.
- In 2022 the UK has offered advanced core technologies to India – capable of creating an indigenous, ITAR-free jet engine. These will be manufactured, owned and exported by India.
- Both countries have established an Electric Propulsion Capability Partnership – and with the JWG in place this will help to set up a strong partnership between the navies of India and the UK for development of Electric Propulsion capability here in India.
- The roadmap has also committed to partner on India’s indigenous combat air programmes – the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA)-MkII and Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA).
Other bilateral exercises
Exercise Indradhanush: a joint air force exercise that aims to improve mutual operational understanding between the two air forces through close interaction. The exercise began in the year 2006.
Exercise Konkan: It is a naval exercise held by India and the United Kingdom. It began in 2004.
Q) India and the UK are set to enhance defence industrial cooperation and work together in co-development and co-production of military platforms. Discuss in the context of recent developments in India-UK defence relations. (150 words)