Sudarshan Shakti 2011

Sudarshan Shakti was devised with the aim to test new doctrinal shifts within the Indian armed forces to see how well the services could integrate and utilize resources leveraging modern warfighting technologies. (Around 60,000 troops, 120 artillery guns, and 300 tanks were reported to be participating in the Nov-Dec 2011 exercise along aircraft such as the Su-30MKI, Jaguars, Mig-27, Mig-21 and AWACS)

The exercise took place in the desert near Barmer in Rajasthan and had elements from the Southern Army Command and the South Western Air Command. The exercise was led by formations under the Bhopal-based 21 Corps, a strike Corps also known by the name Sudarshan Chakra Corps, and was aimed at building synergy between the Army and the Air Force in a network-centric environment to help face challenges of the 21st Century – including having to fight in an environment dominated by the threat from nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons.

“Sudarshan Shakti” is the outcome of a study undertaken by the Army on how to initiate transformation and maintain continuous offensive capabilities with a networked headquarters supported by intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance acting as the nerve-centre of operations. The improvements in weaponry had also given an added impetus to revising existing military doctrines.

Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil (C) is helped by an Indian army officer as she walks down from a T-90 Tank to watch the Indian Army Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer distrcit in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011. Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

An Indian army soldier from 5 Assam Battalion in action to capture enemy bunkers during Indian Army Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer distrcit in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011. Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

MI-35 attack helicopters from Indian Army Aviation Corps and battle tanks participate during the Indian Army Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer distrcit in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011. Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

Indian Army battle tanks participate in the Indian Army Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer distrcit in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011.Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

An Indian Army battle tank Arjun demolishes an enemy bunker during Indian Army Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer distrcit in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011.Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

Media representatives ride on an Indian Army battle tank after the Indian Army’s exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer Rajasthan on December 5, 2011. Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed maneuvers by mechanised forces and other components on their ability in the air and on land. AFP PHOTO / SAM PANTHAKY

A display of modern armaments of the Indian army kept after the Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer district in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011. Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

Indian army soldiers from 5 Assam Battalion hold the Indian national flag after capturing enemy bunkers during the Indian Army Exercise Sudarshan Shakti in Barmer distrcit in Rajasthan on December 5, 2011. Exercise Sudarshan Shakti displayed the maneuver by mechanised forces and all other components on air and land battle concept. AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY

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