Aiming to further strengthen its ability to carry out swift strikes during wars, the Indian Army is going to raise new lethal battle formations along the borders with Pakistan by October.
In an exclusive interview, Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat told India Today TV that he took the decision in the matter after an extensive deliberation with the Army commanders and junior officers.
“After we received the reports from the Army commanders, we carried out field trials and exercises to validate the concepts of Integrated Battle Group (IBG). I’m happy to tell you that from now, top to bottom, our troops are really happy with the formation of the IBGs,” he said.
The Army chief said that the formation of these IBGs will help the force to become lean and efficient in terms of war fighting. As per the plan, the Indian Army is going to raise the first few Integrated Battle Groups along the Pakistan border and then it will simultaneously start raising them on the China border too.
“We carried out an exercise to test the new Integrated Battle Group concept under the Western Command. The feedback from the formations and top commanders has been very positive and that is why we are going to start by raising two to three IBGs along the Pakistan border by October this year,” top sources in the Army said.
The sources also said that the discussion regarding the exercise and feedback was discussed in detail by seven commanders in the Army headquarters in their war room last week, and the commanders-in-chief have been given the powers to raise the IBGs in their respective areas of responsibilities. The first three IBGs to be raised will have elements from different formations of the Western Command.
According to sources, the Army has tested two types of configurations of the IBG during the exercise, including one for offensive roles which during hostilities involves cross-border operations and the other for defensive postures to withstand an enemy onslaught. During the exercise, IBGs will be used instead of brigades.