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The contingents of the Indian Army and the Japan Ground Self Defence Force are taking part in ‘Dharma Guardian’, a joint military exercise, at the Mahajan field firing ranges in Rajasthan, where they are undergoing intense training in room intervention, close quarter battle firing, obstacle clearance and unarmed combat.

Yoga was also practised during the exercise, highlighting its contributions towards attaining a healthy body and sharp mind, said Col Amitabh Sharma, PRO (Defence), Jaipur.

The fifth edition of ‘Dharma Guardian’ between the Indian Army and the Japanese Ground Self Defence Force will continue till March 9.

‘Dharma Guardian’ is an annual exercise which is conducted alternatively in India and Japan. The contingents from both sides comprise 40 personnel each. The Japanese contingent is being represented by troops from the 34th Infantry Regiment, while the Indian Army is being represented by a Battalion from the Rajputana Rifles.

The aim of the exercise is to foster military cooperation and enhance combined capabilities to execute joint operations in semi-urban environments under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. The exercise focuses on a high-degree of physical fitness, joint planning, joint tactical drills and basics of special arms skills.

Lieutenant General Togashi Yuichi, Commanding General, Eastern Army, Japanese Ground Self Defence Force, is scheduled to visit the Mahajan field firing ranges on the sidelines of the joint military exercise on March 3, said Col Sharma.

The joint exercise will enable the two sides to share their best practices in tactics, techniques and procedures of conducting tactical operations.

The exercise will also facilitate developing interoperability, bonhomie and camaraderie between the troops from both sides. This will enhance the level of defence cooperation, further fostering bilateral relations between the two friendly nations.