Gaganshakti 2018: Indian Air Force showcases airdrop commando assault capabilities
The Indian Air Force (IAF) has to be prepared to carry out a variety of assault operations in extremely testing conditions whenever required. Despite a long list of challenges that it has to overcome, IAF remains capable of clamping down every threat with a heavy hand. A glimpse of this was seen during the ongoing Gaganshakti 2018 training when commandos and raiding crafts were dropped in a night-time combat practice exercise.
In a video post on its official social media pages, the IAF showcased its ability to insert combat-ready commandos from aircraft in night-time operations. In the training mode, several commandos can be seen jumping out of an aircraft. Rubberised raiding crafts were also parachuted independently as the training mission involved fulfilling objectives in areas surrounded by water. It is believed that overcoming such terrain-related challenges is crucial in determining the level of success during covert assault operations.
#GaganShakti2018 -Glimpses of Airborne Assault mission involving combination airdrop of a ‘CombatRubberisedRaidingCraft & Combat ready Commandos by night. Missions are undertaken to insert Special Forces into areas surrounded by water to achieve the objectives.@SpokespersonMoD pic.twitter.com/qhnuNyXTd2
— Indian Air Force (@IAF_MCC) April 16, 2018
Assault is but one of the many facets of the IAF. Providing rescue and relief – during war and national emergencies – are also equally important areas where the role of IAF is crucial. Last week, as part of the Gaganshakti exercise, a Globe Master aircraft flew from Leh to Chandigarh carrying 88 ‘patients’ in a medical drill conducted to demonstrate IAF’s ability to evacuate casualties.
The Gaganshakti exercise is one of the biggest ever undertaken by IAF. A massive show of aerial strength, it is being regarded as crucial to establishing IAF’s ability to secure the western front as well as India’s borders with China. According to media reports, after conducting close to 5000 sorties in three days at the western front, the exercise has now shifted to the eastern front where target practice, aerial combats and more such training modules would be undertaken.