Samvedna 2018, the first multilateral Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) exercise of Indian Air Force (IAF) in association with South Asian Region nations was held off the coast of Kerala. The multilateral exercise was spearheaded by IAF and conducted by Southern Air Command (SAC) and involved representatives from air forces of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal and UAE.
Samvedna, which means ‘Empathy’ focused on practising Air Force-centric HADR solutions in Multi-national cooperative Disaster Management environment. The objective of exercise was to galvanise all stakeholders in synergising unified HADR efforts. It will also ensure better understanding and sharing of response procedures between number of friendly neighbouring nations.
The entire settings of exercise was based on scenario of tsunami in western coast of India originating from earthquake in Makran subduction zone (along northeastern margin of Gulf of Oman adjacent to southwestern coast of Balochistan of Pakistan) and resulting in post-tsunami disaster management along western coast and western islands of India.
The exercise will provide clear understanding of scope, role and task, including challenges in air operations and ensuring better understanding and sharing of response procedures among nations. The broad format of exercise will include ground training and flying exercise.
This exercise will help in putting in place basic framework for conduct of Joint Air HADR operations in the region, which will be further refined during subsequent exercises. It is also expected to lead to more coordinated and efficient HADR Air operations in entire South Asian region when need arises.