Come April and India will participate in two naval exercises involving France, the UAE, and the QUAD nations including the US, Japan, and Australia.
According to Hindustan Times, the Indian Navy and its strategic allies will carry out the complex interoperability exercises involving carrier strike groups, anti-submarine warfare aircraft, and attack submarines.
This will be the first time that the UAE will join India and France in a trilateral naval exercise in the strategically important Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. The drills, called Varuna, will be held sometime between April 25 and April 27.
Although the dates of the QUAD-plus France naval exercise have not been firmed up on paper, the countries will showcase their naval strength and commitment to freedom of navigation from April 4 to April 7, according to reports.
India, the US, Australia, Japan, and France will carry out the drills in the Bay of Bengal under the banner of La Perouse. These will see missile-guided destroyers, frigates, submarines, and surveillance aircraft practicing complex maneuvers.
The La Perouse and Varuna last took place in 2019 but were canceled in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Indian destroyers, the Boeing P-8 Poseidon military aircraft, and submarines will participate in the QUAD-plus naval drills.
During the major exercise, the warships will practice formation sailing, live firing, communications, search, rescue, damage control, and personnel transfers.
QUAD or Quadrilateral Security Dialogue is an informal arrangement between the US, India, Japan, and Australia to counter China’s growing aggression in the Asia-Pacific. It is often termed as the Asian NATO.