Bikaner (Rajasthan) [India], Nov 13 (ANI): The closing ceremony of the joint military exercise between the armies of India and France, 'Exercise SHAKTI-2019' was held at Mahajan Field Firing Range in Bikaner on Wednesday.The ceremony was reviewed by Brigadier General Jean Christophe Bechon, Commandant 6th Light Armoured Brigade, French Army and Major General Inderjit Singh, General Officer Commanding, Gandiv Division of Sapta Shakti Command, according to an official statement.An infantry platoon group of The Sikh Regiment part of Sapta Shakti Command and a platoon group of the 21st Marine Infantry Regiment part of 6th Armoured Brigade represented India and France respectively in the exercise."'Shakti' was a two-phased exercise. In the interoperability phase, the contingents underwent rigorous combat conditioning and tactical training. The training received by both the armies in interoperability phase was put into practice in the validation phase," the statement said.The contingents jointly took part in the validation exercise which included the establishment of observation posts, cordon and search operation and house clearing drills. Both the armies shared valuable combat experience of counter-terrorist operations in an international environment under the United Nations (UN) mandate, the statement added."'Shakti' has been a resounding success with both contingents achieving interoperability and coordination in conducting successful counter-terrorist operations in a semi-urban environment under a UN Mandate," it said.The closing ceremony marked the successful culmination of 'Shakti' and witnessed march-past by both the contingents, exchange of mementoes and band display.In their address, the reviewing officers congratulated the participating troops for representing their countries, displaying the highest standards of training and ethos and achieving the mandated aim of the joint exercise, which have further strengthened military relations between India and France, the statement further said. (ANI)

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