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Wednesday, 31 December 2014

From Today's Papers - 31 Dec 2014















http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/moments-before-release-lakhvi-detained-again/24476.html
Moments before release, Lakhvi detained again
Islamabad, December 30
Mumbai attack mastermind Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi was arrested today for kidnapping a man six years ago, stalling his release a day after a Pakistani court suspended his detention under a public security order drawing India’s ire.

Just before his release, Lakhvi was arrested on the charge of kidnapping one Muhammad Anwer. In an FIR registered yesterday at a police station in Islamabad, Anwer said he was kidnapped by Lakhvi six years ago.

Lakhvi was granted bail on December 18 in the Mumbai attack case but was detained under the Maintenance of Public Order (MPO) before his release. He challenged his detention under MPO in the Islamabad High Court which yesterday suspended the government order, evoking a strong reaction from India.

After being slapped with the charge of kidnapping, Lakhvi was taken out of the Adiala Jail, Rawalpindi, and presented before the judicial magistrate amid tight security at the police station. The magistrate remanded him in police custody for two days. He was later taken to an undisclosed location by the police.

“Because of security concerns we cannot put him in the Golra Sharif police station where the abduction case has been registered against Lakhvi yesterday,” an official of Pakistan’s interior ministry said. Lakhvi’s counsel Raja Rizwan Abbasi alleged that his client had been arrested in a “fake” case only to “please India”.

“The fake abduction case against Lakhvi was registered after the Islamabad High Court suspended his detention to ensure his further detention,” he said. Abbasi said he would challenge the “fake FIR” in court.

Lakhvi was set to be freed from the Adaila Jail this morning on the order of the Islamabad High Court after he submitted Rs 1 million surety bond, but just before that the jail superintendent received an order from the government regarding his arrest in the abduction case. — PTI


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/army-told-to-trace-bodo-militant-leader-songbijit/24480.html
Army told to trace Bodo militant leader Songbijit
Ajay Banerjee

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 30
The Army has been asked to go all out to track down Songbijit Ingti Kathar, leader of the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) which killed 70 Santhal tribals in north Assam on December 23.

Some 5,000 troops have been pressed into action along an east-west axis in north Assam bordering Bhutan. Troops of the Indian Army and Assam Rifles are combing an area between Kokrajhar and Sonitpur.

Another group of Armed forces and an intelligence agency has been tasked to look if Songbijit escaped to Myanmar where NDFB cadre often seeks sanctuary.

India has officially sought help from Bhutan and also Myanmar in tracking down Songbijit and his group. New Delhi has credible information that some of these groups are connected to Bangladesh. In the past, Arabinda Rajakhowa, top leader of the ULFA (another Assam-based insurgent group) was reportedly handed by the country to India.

Sources said the Army has been given two tasks — to ensure that the tribals are able to return to their homes as majority of them are labourers in tea gardens and to conduct ‘special operations’, which means gun totting troops carrying out specific operation to track a person. Sources said 54 per cent of all violence in Assam is carried out by the Songbijit faction of the NDFB. In the past, 40 NDFB men were killed in encounters with forces and 56 were apprehended and another 63 had surrendered.

Today, at a high-level security meeting chaired by Home Minister Rajnath Singh and attended by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag was told to ensure that peace returned to the violence-hit areas and there was no flare up.

Rajnath said army presence should be increased in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya where NDFB militants were active.

The meeting also reviewed the security arrangement ahead of US President Barack Obama’s visit on Republic Day. National Security Adviser Ajit K Doval, Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh and chiefs of Intelligence agencies attended the meeting.

Activities of Pakistan-based militant groups and their attempts to carry out terror attacks in hinterland were also discussed in the nearly two-hour meeting.

The Home Minister asked intelligence chiefs to ensure that there should not be any gap in intelligence gathering mechanism and all inputs must be analysed carefully and shared with all agencies concerned with utmost seriousness.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/jcos-unhappy-with-services-at-military-hospitals-study/24491.html
JCOs unhappy with services at military hospitals: Study
Vijay Mohan

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 30
An internal study by Army medical specialists on satisfaction levels among patients has found that junior commissioned officers have predominantly expressed lower satisfaction as compared to officers.

Statistically, the study has identified significant differences against various attributes applicable to medicare as well as overall impression towards OPD services.

The study, undertaken by a Brigadier posted at the Armed Forces Medical College and a Lieutenant Commander deployed at an operational naval base, was conducted at a tertiary care hospital. The questionnaire with 120 samples was stratified into officers, JCOs and other ranks, including dependents.

The study found that substantial difference existed among the respondents in respect of certain attributes like information received at the registration counter and the queue system. Over 90% officers were highly satisfied with the registration time as compared to 75% JCOs. All respondents expressed lower satisfaction judgement against certain structural attributes like waiting area, seating facility, toilet facilities and availability of TV and magazines. However, one redeeming feature was the high level of satisfaction of all respondents in respect of courteousness of the staff.

JCOs also expressed lower satisfaction levels than officers over the number of doctors available, waiting time for consultation and the consultation room environment and time devoted by doctors.

Satisfaction levels varied widely across certain attributes of the dispensary. While officers and other ranks expressed moderate to high satisfaction judgement for the dispensary counter and waiting area, JCOs were not so happy about the same. Similarly statistically significant difference was also observed about waiting time for collection of medicines.

The aim of the study was to analyse and compare the level of satisfaction of patients attending the OPD at a military hospital to gauge the quality of healthcare being provided. OPD is the first point of contact of the hospital with patients. The care in the OPD indicates the quality of services of a hospital and is reflected by patients’ satisfaction.


http://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2014-Major-Boost-for-Defence-Preparedness/2014/12/30/article2595577.ece
2014 Major Boost for Defence Preparedness


NEW DELHI: Though “Make in India’ became the buzzword of the corridors of the south block, which houses the ministry of defence, but the year of 2014 has been a major boost for defence preparedness as more than Rs. 1.5 lak crore acquisition projects were cleared by the BJP led NDA government in the past six months of its tenure. During AK Antony’s tenure, the process of acquisition was mired with series of bribery allegation, which led to cancellation of various on-going acquisition projects and hit country’s defence preparedness badly.

The year 2004 has been worst on the India-Pakistan border, with over 550 incidents of ceasefire violations have been reported by the Pakistan army. . Exactly 11 years after the peace pact, the Indo-Pak border witnessed the worst such escalation during August to October which left 13 people, including 2 security personnel dead, and thousands displaced in the Jammu sector.

But for the Indian navy, 2014 has been a mix bag, as its chief Admiral DK Joshi quit for taking responsibility of repeated mishaps involving warships. But after that, Indian navy has seen various upward movements like embarking of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the country’s biggest aircraft carrier INS Vikrmaditya and commissioning of various warships and approval of the project to manufacture six submarines under Project 75 India.

Many of the equipment and platforms, cleared by the Defence Acquisition Council, will be manufactured in the country, either by the public or private sector entities, through collaborations and tie-ups with foreign manufacturing companies.

Year of Greater Indigenization and Modernization:

For speedy indigenization, the government increased the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) limit from 26% to 49% through approval route. Above 49%, the proposal will go to Cabinet Committee on Security on case to case basis. The government also lifted an earlier three year lock-in period for foreign investment in Defence sector. Defence products list for the purpose of industrial licensing has been revised. In the revised list most of the components/parts/raw materials, castings, forgings, production machinery, testing equipment etc. have been taken out of purview of industrial licensing.

Besides, dual use items other than those specifically mentioned in the list would not require industrial license from defence angle. This will reduce the license requirement for many items, which were earlier required industrial license for manufacturing. In order to give a boost to private sector participation in defence production, the Government has decided to replace the present fleet of 56 AVRO Transport of IAF by reserving the project for the private sector only.

The DAC also decided that all the 384 light-utility helicopters needed by the Army and Air Force to replace the existing Cheetah/Chetak fleets will be made in India with foreign collaboration.

But to enhance Indian navy’s depleting underwater capability, on 25 October 2014, the DAC decided to build six submarines in India at a cost of about Rs. 50,000 crore.

For speeding up modernisation programmes, the Government has made a special allocation of Rs. 5000 crores in the current Union Budget. And to encourage research and development of new Defence systems that enhance cutting-edge technology capability in the country, the government has allocated Rs 100 Crores to set up a Technology Development Board.

Acquisitions

There were major pending acquisitions in the year including the acquisition of 22 Apache attack helicopters and 15 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters from the US, Navy’s proposal to buy 16 multi-role helicopters, which fly from warships and detect enemy submarines. The Defence Acquisition Council also approved the purchase of Integrated Anti-Submarine Warfare Suites (torpedo decoys and active towed array sonars) to be fitted on seven stealth frigates and four destroyers, which are to be built in India. Besides,  a proposals for Rs. 4,444 crore, including the purchase of four survey vessels at Rs. 2,324 crore was also cleared alongwith upgradation of the Mobile Integrated Electronic Warfare System, Samyukta, at a cost of Rs. 1,682 crore.

And for reliable and connectivity, the ministry has also cleared a Rs. 900 crore dedicated mobile communications system for army troops deployed in Ladakh and the Eastern Command.

Infrastructure Development

In attempt to match the infrastructure development with China, the panic stricken defence ministry allocated Rs. 1000 crore in this year’s budget for accelerating the development of railway system in border areas especially facing China. To facilitate quick mobilization of troops and weapons systems, the government also plans to embark on a major road building exercise to counter security threats both along the China borders as well as in Maoist-affected areas within the country.

In order to facilitate this, government relaxed the environment norms to a great extent. Also more financial and operational powers have been delegated to Director General, Border Roads Organisation and his officers for faster implementation of the projects. BRO is developing roads along the 4056 Kms China border from Arunachal Pradesh to Jammu & Kashmir, including widening of some existing roads.

Capacity Building

2014 has seen capacity building in the existing and new strategic areas which includes beginning of sea-trials of indigenously built nuclear-powered submarine INS Arihant and the much awaited test flying of LCA (Navy) prototype-I.  LCA (Navy), the first indigenously designed and developed 4th plus generation combat aircraft designed to operate from the decks of aircraft carriers, took-off majestically from Ski-Jump facility of Shore Based Test Facility (SBTF) at INS Hansa in Goa on 20th December 2014. The SBTF created to replicate the aircraft carrier with a Ski Jump for take-off and arresting gear cable for arrested landing, became operational for R&D as well as pilot training.

We can say that the year 2014 has been the year of Indian navy when it comes to self-reliance. To begin with INS Kolkata, an indigenous destroyer built at Mazagaon Dock Limited, Mumbai, the biggest warship ever to be built in India to date, was commissioned by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 16 August. INS Kamorta, an ASW corvette built at Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited, Kolkata, was commissioned, in addition to a  Offshore Patrol Vessel INS Sumitra built. Moreover, INS Vikramaditya, including its Mig 29K integral fighter aircraft has been inducted into the Navy. Maritime Surveillance Capability of the Navy has been bolstered with the recent induction of Long Range Maritime Patrol Aircraft P81. Indian Navy’s ability to communicate with deployed ships and submarines on an uninterrupted basis throughout the year got a shot in the arm when a new state of the art “Very Low Frequency (VLF) Transmitting Station” was inaugurated on 31 July, 2014 at INS Kattaboman, Tirunelvelli, Tamil Nadu. India is among a handful of nations in the world that has such a capability.

Two Advanced Early Warning and Combat (AEW&C) aircraft having  fitted with the indigenous radars and other equipment such as data links, mission system controller, data handling and display system have been flying.

Missiles

Successful test trials of surface-to-air Akash missile and induction of its Air Force version into IAF, successful launching of 5000 Km range Agni-5, long range cruise missile Nirbhay, user trials of  Prithvi-II, supersonic BrahMos and beyond visual range missile Astra were the hallmarks of this year’s achievement.

Coastal Security

With the commissioning of Information Management & Analysis Centre (IMAC) at Gurgaon, costal security has taken a major leap after 2008 Mumbai terror attack. Set up by the defence PSU Bharat Electronics Limited(BEL) with American software, IMAC will be the nodal centre of the National Command Control Communications and Intelligence Network (NC3I Network), with the aim of improving coastal surveillance and tightening coastal security so as to pre-empt/prevent sea-borne terrorist attacks like 26/11 on Mumbai. The Government’s decision to allocate a sum of Rs. 150 crore for construction of marine police stations and jetties along the vast coast lines is also a positive step in this direction.

Reaching Out to the People in Distress

From actively participating in floods in the Jammu and Kashmir to forest fire in Vishakapatnam and cyclone Hudhud, the tri services i.e. Army, IAF and Navy played a key role in the relief and rescue operations throughout the year.

Disquiet Borders

2014 has seen the worst border with Pakistan since 2003 ceasefire agreement, as more than 550 incidents of the violation of peace pact was carried out by the Pakistan side.

Exactly 11 years after the peace pact, the Indo-Pak border witnessed the worst such escalation during August to October which left 13 people, including 2 security personnel dead, and thousands displaced in the Jammu sector. In fact, on the Line of Actual with China, has also been various incidents of incursions and face-off between the two armies. Joint Exercises and visit of Indian warships on goodwill mission.

The 4th India-China Joint Training Exercise ‘Hand-in-Hand -2014’ held in Pune, Exercise Yudh- Abhyas- The Indo-US Combined Military Training Exercise, Exercise Garuda V-the fifth edition of Indo-French joint Air Exercise, Exercise Avia Indra- Indo-Russia Joint Air Force Exercise, were some of the major military exercises with Indian army participated.

Even the Indian navy did SIMBEX, Exercise Komodo, Tropex, Rimpac, Malabar  and International fleet review etc.

Digitization of Records

Digitization of records in History Division, Ministry of Defence is in progress. The work is likely to be completed by December, 2016. Likewise digitization of files/records relating to Defence land is also in progress and the same is likely to be completed by March, 2015.

e-SAMIKSHA

An on-line system, e-Samiksha for monitoring of follow-up action on the decisions taken during the presentations made by different Ministries/Departments to the Prime Minister, decisions taken during Committee of Secretaries meetings, Center-State coordination issues, progress of Court cases pending before various Courts/Tribunals in which Cabinet Secretary is a respondent either directly or in the form of a pro-forma party etc. has been launched by Cabinet Secretariat. The same is being monitored regularly for issues related to this Ministry.



http://news.webindia123.com/news/Articles/India/20141230/2519973.html
Home Minister reviews security situation with Defence Minister, Army Chief
 Home Minister Rajnath Singh today reviewed the overall security situation in the country with Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag and other top officials.

Sources said preparedness for the upcoming Republic Day parade was discussed in details as US president Barrack Obama will be the chief guest at Rajpath this time.

After the high-level meeting, Gen Suhag told reporters that the overall security situation was discussed.

Besides them, Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh and the top brass of intelligence agencies attended the meeting.

The security situation in violence-hit Assam and Bangalore was also discussed, the sources said. UNI MK SW 1529 NNNN


http://freepressjournal.in/big-boost-for-armed-forces-modernisation-but-gaps-remain/
Big boost for armed forces’ modernisation but gaps remain - See more at:

http://freepressjournal.in/big-boost-for-armed-forces-modernisation-but-gaps-remain/#sthash.KsJ4cK9E.dpuf
New Delhi: Modernisation of the armed forces got a whopping Rs.1.23 lakh crore (Rs.1.23 trillion/$19 billion) boost in the year just ending, but worrisome gaps – the failure to close a deal to replace a combat jet inducted in the 1960s and a crippling shortage of “fighting-rank” officers – remain.

That the funding came in the first six months of the new BJP-led government was indicative of its determination to overcome almost a decade of sloth caused by A.K. Antony’s bid to keep his image “clean” while he was defence minister (till May).

The funds were cleared by five meetings of the Defence Acquisiton Council – four chaired by Arun Jaitley when he held additional charge of the ministry and one by Manohar Parrikar. The monies will go towards the purchase of six stealth submarines (Rs.50,000 crore), “Spike” Israeli anti-tank guided missiles (Rs.3,200 crore), two midget submarines (Rs.2,017 crore), 12 Dornier maritime reconnaissance aircraft (Rs.1,850 crore), 363 BMP-II infantry combat vehicles (Rs.1,800 crore), ship-borne Russian Uran missiles (Rs.1,436 crore), 1,768 railway wagons (Rs.740 crore) and 1,761 vehicle-mounted radio relay containers (Rs.660) crore, among others.

Much of this, for instance the submarines and the Dorniers, will be made within the country and will majorly take forward Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ campaign.

Other positives during the year included raising the foreign direct investment (FDI) in the defence sector from 25 percent to 49 percent, the indigenous nuclear powered submarine INS Arihant heading out for sea trials, and beginning of series production of the indigenous Tejas light combat aircraft.

Once INS Arihant is commissioned about two years from now, it would complete India’s nuclear triad of strategic bombers, intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs).

India has for long been working on a missile defence shield and this would get a further boost with the construction, under wraps at Visakhapatnam, of a stealth vessel armed with an Aegis type system that employs powerful computer and radar technology to track and guide weapons to destroy enemy targets. A defence ministry source said this vessel would patrol the seas between Mumbai and Jamnagar to protect both India’s commercial capital and the country’s largest oil refinery.

As for the combat jet, it was in 2012 that the Indian Air Force (IAF) zeroed in on French aviation major Dasault’s Rafale after a six-aircraft competition for a $20 billion deal for 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) to replace its Soviet-era MiG-21 jets that have been crashing with maddening regularity.

The tender itself was floated in 2007 and the six aircraft shortlisted in 2010, but there has been concrete action only in the last two years due to protracted price negotiations and differences in calculating life-cycle costs and factoring in the cost of transferring technology. One fallout has been the alarming reduction in the IAF squadrons (16+2 aircraft each) to 25 from its sanctioned strength of 39.

“It’s not just a case of depleting squadrons. The Rafale dates from the mid-1980s and even assuming the deal is clinched this year, by the time the last of the jets are inducted, the technology will be more than 40 years old,” an officer involved in the selection process told IANS, declining to be identified on the ground he was not authorised to speak to the media.

While the initial lot of 18 aircraft (one squadron) will come in fly-away condition, the remaining will be progressively manufactured in the country by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. The number could eventually go up to 200 as there is a provision for a 50 percent hike as a follow-on order.

On the officer front, the Indian Army, which is authorised 48,000, is short of 7,764 lieutenant colonels, majors, captains and lieutenants, considered the “fighting rank” officers. The Indian Navy is short of 1,499 lieutenant commanders, lieutenants and sub-lieutenants against its authorised strength of 9,000, and the IAF short of 357 wing commanders, squadron leaders, flight lieutenants and flying officers against its authorised strength of 12,000 officers.

The first quarter of the year saw a nasty hiccup with Admiral D.K. Joshi putting in his papers as the Indian Navy chief after a series of mishaps, including the sinking of a submarine in Mumbai harbour after an explosion and a fire aboard another.

As the year progressed, the chill in the India-Russia defence ties became more pronounced, with New Delhi clearly stating, ahead of President Vladimir Putin’s visit earlier this month, that it could not indefinitely wait for a fifth-generation stealth fighter, an understanding on which was reached during Antony’s visit to Moscow in 2007.

Russia’s decision to deepen its military ties was another matter of concern but not entirely unexpected. After all, the US has overtaken Russia as India’s principal source of armaments and other military hardware – in the last three years, this country made purchases worth Rs.32,615 crore from the US, against Rs.25,364 crore from Russia.

“This has been caused by the changing global paradigm and the trend will continue with both India and the US saying they want to put the past behind them and move ahead. Also, don’t forget that ‘Make in India’ has a better chance of moving forward with the US  than with Russia,” the defence ministry source told IANS.


http://www.dailyexcelsior.com/flareups-borders-push-defence-forces-modernisation-2014/
Flareups on borders push Defence Forces’ Modernisation in 2014
NEW DELHI :  The Defence Forces this year faced stiff challenges of unprovoked firing from Pakistan army and a tense standoff posed by China’s People’s Liberation Army, prompting the Government to fast track the process of modernisation of military services.
The Defence Ministry which was led by three Defence Ministers–A K Antony, Arun Jaitley and the incumbent Manohar Parrikar, took some bold initiatives to bolster the country’s security policies and the much needed momentum was provided to the modernisation process of the Armed Forces.    ‘Make in India’ became the buzzword in the corridors of MoD. The Defence Acquisition Council, the apex decision-making body of the Ministry, triggered a scorching pace of acquisition by clearing proposals worth over Rs 1.50 lakh crores for the Services this year alone.
Many of the equipment and platforms, cleared by the Defence Acquisition Council, will be manufactured in the country, either by the public or private sector entities, through collaborations and tie-ups with foreign manufacturing companies.      It was also this year when Jammu & Kashmir, especially capital Srinagar, experienced hitherto unknown magnitude of flash floods and thereafter, the state witnessed unprecedented participation of voters in the electoral process in the violence free atmosphere provided by the security forces.     Although the Armed Forces and their families stationed in the valley were severely affected by the floods, the brave officers and men put behind their woes and carried out rescue and relief operations on a war footing, thereby, endearing themselves to the people of the state and the nation as a whole.    The Army also faced the barrage of ceasefire violation from across the LoC and the International border from Pakistan side while Chinese troops created an eye-ball-to-eye-ball situation in Ladakh.
For speedy indigenisation, the Government increased the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) limit from 26 to 49 per cent through approval route. The Government also lifted an earlier three year lock-in period for foreign investment in Defence sector.     Defence products list for the purpose of industrial licensing was revised and most of the components/parts/raw materials, castings, forgings, production machinery, testing equipment were taken out of purview of industrial licensing.     In order to give a boost to private sector participation in defence production, the government also decided to replace the present fleet of 56 AVRO transport of the IAF by reserving the project for the private sector only.    The DAC also decided that all the 384 light-utility helicopters needed by the Army and Air Force to replace the existing Cheetah/Chetak fleets will be made in India with foreign collaboration, thereby creating an opportunity for the domestic industry to the tune of Rs 40,000 crore.     In a significant decision on October 25, the DAC cleared projects worth over Rs 50,000 crores to build six submarines in India.
The Defence Ministry decided that the acquisition of 22 Apache attack helicopters and 15 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters from the US will continue.
The Government approved the Navy’s proposal to buy 16 multi-role helicopters, which fly from warships and detect enemy submarines. The proposal to purchase of Integrated Anti-Submarine Warfare Suites, which are to be built in India, was also approved.
The Ministry, on December 17 approved proposals for Rs 4,444 crore, including the purchase of four survey vessels at Rs 2,324 crore. It also cleared the upgradation of the Mobile Integrated Electronic Warfare System, Samyukta, at a cost of Rs 1,682 crore.    The Government also cleared a Rs 900 crore dedicated mobile communications system for army troops deployed in Ladakh and the Eastern Command.
The Government allocated Rs 1000 crore in this year’s budget for accelerating the development of railway system in border areas. This will facilitate quick mobilisation of troops and weapon systems in border areas and also expedite the modernisation process.
The Government also plans to embark on a major road building exercise to counter security threats both along the China borders as well as in Maoist-affected areas within the country. In order to facilitate this, government relaxed the environment norms to a great extent.
The year saw capacity building in the existing and new strategic areas which includes beginning of sea-trials of indigenously built nuclear-powered submarine INS Arihant and the much awaited test flying of LCA (Navy) prototype-I.     The LCA programme witnessed yet another milestone on November 8 when Tejas trainer PV6, the two-seater version of Tejas LCA for Air Force, in its first flight took to the skies and became the 16th Tejas variant to have flown as part of the programme.     Having absorbed all the major design modifications undertaken during the flights of earlier aircraft, PV6 is the final prototype leading to series of production of trainer and has the capability to deliver all ‘air-to-air’ and ‘air-to-ground’ weapons deliverable by the single seat counterpart.      In another landmark event, LCA (Navy) Prototype, the first indigenously designed and developed 4th plus generation combat aircraft designed to operate from the decks of aircraft carriers, took-off majestically from Ski-Jump facility of Shore Based Test Facility (SBTF) at INS Hansa in Goa on December 20.
Year 2014 also witnessed the successful test trials of surface-to-air Akash missile and induction of its Air Force version into IAF, successful launching of 5000 Km range Agni-5, long range cruise missile Nirbhay, user trials of  Prithvi-II, supersonic BrahMos and beyond visual range missile Astra.      The Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) continued on the path of building self-reliance. The production value of DRDO developed systems inducted or cleared for acquisition crossed Rs 1,70,000 crores. The year 2014 witnessed yet another series of accomplishments with enormous potential to further enhance the level of self-reliance in defence technologies.
The 4,000 km range road mobile ballistic missile AGNI-4, was successfully flight tested twice. Among the development flights, the flight test on January 20 paved the way for flight test on December 2, by the armed forces. With Agni 1, 2, 3 and Prithvi already in India’s arsenal, Agni 4 further extends the reach and enhances effective deterrence capability.     Besides, practice cum training launches of strategic missiles which are already inducted, such as Agni-1, Agni-2, P-II and Dhanush were carried out by the armed forces.    Nirbhay, the 1000 km class long range sub-sonic cruise missile was successfully flight tested on October 17. The flight lasted over one hour and met all the mission objectives with the missile following the predefined trajectory with very high accuracy throughout its path.
The maiden flight of PDV exo-atmospheric interceptor on April 27 was a significant milestone in the direction of developing a two layered Ballistic Missile Defence System.
Throughout the year, all three forces remained engaged in exercises with various countries.
The 4th India-China Joint Training Exercise ‘Hand-in-Hand -2014′ was conducted in November near Pune.    The Indo-US Combined Military Training Exercise “Yudh Abhyas- 2014″, was held in September, 2014 at Ranikhet and Chaubattia.     The fifth edition of Indo-French joint Air Exercise “Garuda V” began at Air Force Station Jodhpur on June 2, and concluded on June 13.
Indo-Russia Joint Air Force Exercise ‘Avia Indra – 2014′, Phase – I was conducted at Astrakhan, Russia in fourth week of August while the Phase – II of the exercise was conducted at Air Force Station, Halwara, Punjab in November.    The 2014 edition of the ‘SIMBEX-14′ series of annual bilateral naval exercises between the Indian Navy (IN) and the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), was conducted in the Andaman Sea from May 22 to 28.
The Indian Navy participated in the multilateral, humanitarian assistance/disaster relief (HA/DR) exercise, dubbed “Komodo -2014″, which was held at Indonesia from March 28 to April 3.     The Indian Navy’s major annual exercise ‘TROPEX’ (Theatre Level Operational Readiness Exercise) concluded on February 28 .    Covering a distance of over five thousand nautical miles, Indian Naval ship Sahyadri, an indigenously built guided missile stealth frigate reached at Pearl Harbour, USA on July 1, 2014 to participate in the multilateral maritime exercise called RIMPAC (Rim of Pacific).
INS Shivalik was deployed for participation in International Fleet Review and Multilateral Maritime Exercise at Qingdao, China from April 20-25.
Ships of the eastern fleet of the Indian Navy, viz. Shivalik, Ranvijay and Shakti reached at Vladivostok, Russia to participate in the joint Indo-Russia Naval Exercise- “INDRA-2014″.    Exercise Malabar was conducted in July and it helped Indian, Japanese and US navies to have a common understanding and knowledge of a shared working environment at sea.    In a memorable event of 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, embarked on the newly inducted India’s largest aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, off the coast of Goa, on June 13, which incidentally was his first visit to an operational military formation after assuming office as the office. He dedicated the aircraft carrier to the Nation.
The eighth edition of International Land, Naval and International Security Systems Exhibition started on February 6, 2014 at New Delhi. The exhibition saw the participation of 624 companies from 30 countries. It was concluded on February 10, 2014.

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