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International Army Games

Russia had for the first time offered India to host a part of the International Army Games two years ago for its 2018 edition but the hosting was deferred by a year to make adequate preparations, Army chief Gen Bipin Rawat said Friday.

In a first, India will host a part of the International Army Games -- an international military sports event in Rajasthan's Jaisalmer for over nine days in August in a bid to promote bonhomie among the participating countries.

India will host the fifth Army International Scout Masters Competition as part of the games and also take part in this discipline for the first time.

The International Army Games, organised by the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, have been taking place since 2015 and sees participation of close to 32 countries.

"We first got the offer in 2017 to co-host the 2018 edition of the games. But we felt we were not fully ready so we decided to host it in 2019 as we are doing this year," Rawat told reporters on the sidelines of an event.

A curtain-raiser of the Army International Scout Masters Competition was held at the Manekshaw Centre Friday which was attended by Rawat and several other senior Army officers.

Rawat also said India has been participating in sniper event and tank biathlons as part of the competition.

This year, it is proposed that the International Army Games will have 32 disciplines to be hosted by 10 countries -- Russia, India, China, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Iran, Mongolia, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, officials said.

The India leg of the event is being held at the culturally-rich golden city of Jaisalmer, nestled in the Thar desert.

"A total of eight countries -- Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Zimbabwe, Armenia, Belarus, China and India -- will participate in this leg. The competition is being held in India for the first time under the aegis of the Indian Army and is being organised by the Konark Corps at the Jaisalmer military station," an official said.

The Army Scout Masters Competition will be conducted from August 6 to 14, he said.

The Army Games have been a platform for participating nations to interact and promote bonhomie.

The officials said the aim of the competition is to enhance international military-to-military cooperation, assist each other in proliferation of best practices, develop competitive spirit amongst scouts participating and display combat capabilities and characteristics of modern weapons and equipment.

The Indian Army is proud to host the Fifth Army Scout Masters Competition as part of the International Army Games 2019, Rawat said.

"The championship will offer unique challenges and opportunities. The competition is designed to promote co-operation, collaboration and team spirit among the contestants and facilitate sharing of best practices, technology and hardware," he said.

The Army officials said the role of an army scout is to operate as one of the lead personnel in an operational area to gather information of the enemy by vehicle mounted or dismounted reconnaissance patrols.

"Army scouts track as well as report movement behind enemy lines assist in disruption of enemy mechanised move by using anti-armour weapons, laying ambushes deep inside enemy territory and direct employment of various weapon systems," another official said.

Their specialised skills enable them to assist with observation and listening posts, perform and help with navigation and help securing launch pads. They are trained to carry out silent battle reconnaissance after establishing contact and reconnaissance of crossing places over obstacles.

Scouts are professionally trained to find out the strength and dispositions of an enemy, gaps in enemy defences and its likely reactions. They are also referred to as the 'eyes and ears' of the army, they said.

Source:www.business-standard.com

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