Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman on Saturday resumed his assigned duties at Suratgarh Air Force Station in Rajasthan, reported The Times of India. However, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has not confirmed his posting to Suratgarh base saying that it is a confidential information. Meanwhile, the force has only confirmed that the IAF officer is posted in Rajasthan.
Earlier this month, a video of the IAF officer’s interaction with his colleagues went viral on social media. In the video, Wg Cdr Varthaman was looking fit and was seen clicking pictures with his air force colleagues and army personnel. The IAF pilot also joined men in shouting ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’. During his interaction, Wg Cdr Varthaman thanked the countrymen for their wishes. He said, “These photographs are not for you but for your families. I have not been able to meet them. I have recovered because of their prayers and the prayers of many.”
The IAF officer was released almost after 60 hours by Pakistan on March 1. After his return from Pakistan via the Attari-Wagah border, Wg Cdr Varthaman underwent a series of medical tests at Army’s Research and Referral (R&R) hospital in Delhi. He was also recommended by the IAF for the Vir Chakra, the third highest wartime gallantry award after the Paramvir Chakra and the Mahavir Chakra.
The Indian Army’s ‘Vijay Prahar’ exercise concluded today. Around 25,000 troops of strike formation of South Western Command (SWC) participated in the exercise. The month-long exercise was conducted in the Mahajan Field Firing Ranges of Jaipur close to Suratgarh in Rajasthan. Pakistan border was 300Kms away from the location of the exercise. The ‘Vijay Prahar’ was carried out with cutting-edge equipment and state-of-the-art force multipliers.
South Western Army Commander Lt Gen Cherish Mathson was present in the range on the last day of the exercise to witness the final offensive of the forces achieving a decisive victory. Lt Gen Mathson told reporters, “I had laid out unambiguous scope for activities to be carried out and had also benchmarked standards to be achieved. I am fully satisfied with the efforts put in and results achieved.” He further added that designing an offensive campaign on the principles of operational art in a deep air-land battle with real-time intelligence marked the beginning of the exercise.
The concept of ‘Air Cavalry’ using attack and weaponised helicopters was validated during the exercise. Employment of modern-day sensors with weapon platforms was carried out. The exercise also focussed on real-time information and enhancing electronic warfare, reconnaissance capabilities and using satellite-based surveillance. Drones and radars were also put to test to check their efficiency with the aim to ensure transparency in the battlefield.
Operations were carried out under superficially created nuclear environment during the ‘Vijay Prahar’. The main of these operations was to check the preparation of the army under a tactical Nuclear, Chemical or Biological attack by the adversary with advanced CBRN capability. The Army and the Air Force came together to test their joint conventional firepower capability during the exercise. Lt Gen Mathson also complimented the troops who braved the soaring temperatures above 45 degrees Celsius and sandstorms to achieve a very high degree of proficiency.
Over 20,000 troops of strike formation of the Indian Army’s South Western Command (SWC) are carrying out ‘Vijay Prahar’ exercise in the Mahajan Field Firing Ranges close to Suratgarh in Rajasthan. The exercise is being carried out with cutting-edge equipment and state-of-the-art force multipliers. Suratgarh is 300Km from Pakistan Border.
As reported by The Tribune, Brigadier Anil Gautam, General Staff (Information Warfare), SWC, said, “The exercise represents a small section of the overall offensive along our Western front which would be a high tempo joint air land operation involving hundreds of aircrafts, thousands of tanks and artillery pieces supported by real time intelligence surveillance reconnaissance and just in time logistic support.” He further added, “Troops are participating in a month-long exercise to practice penetrative maneuvers across the obstacle-ridden terrain, mainly the heartland Punjab area of our adversary, under a nuclear umbrella.”
The month-old drill is concluding on May 9. The formations of the South Western Command are enhancing their capabilities to counter any warlike situation, which includes carrying out offensive operations of Special Forces and also conducting operations in nuclear environment. Military operations using attack helicopters are also being tested during the exercise. Employment of modern day sensors with weapon platforms is also carried out. The exercise is also focusing on real-time information and enhancing electronic warfare, reconnaissance capabilities and using satellite-based surveillance. Drones and radars are also put to test to check their efficiency with the main aim to ensure transparency in the battlefield.
As per the report, Senior military officers, including General Bipin Rawat, Chief of the Army Staff; and Lt Gen Cherish Mathson, Army Commander, South Western Command, are likely to witness the final phases of the exercise later in the week.