The Indian Military will execute high-intensity offensive and defensive manoeuvres in the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal in an exercise. Codenamed Kavach or shield. The military drill be coordinated by the Port Blair based Andaman and Nicobar Command.
The defence ministry announced on Thursday that the exercise will be carried out next week to fine-tune joint warfighting capabilities and sharpen operational synergy between the three services.
This exercise comes at a time when India is locked in a standoff with China in eastern Ladakh. This exercise holds a lot of significance as China is trying to open multiple routes to the Indian Ocean.
China’s apprehension is that major naval powers are controlling the Malacca Strait between Malaysia and Indonesia as a result of which vital supply lines are interdicted. More than 80 per cent of China’s oil imports pass through the 350 km strait that connects the Indian Ocean and South China Sea.
In a statement, the Defence Ministry said, “the exercise will involve synergised application of maritime surveillance assets, coordinated air and maritime strikes, air defence, submarine and landing operation.”