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Maitree Exercise 2024, Strengthening India-Thailand Military Cooperation

July 1, 2024, marks the beginning of an important event in India-Thailand relations. The Maitree Exercise, a joint military exercise between the Indian Army and the Royal Thai Army, kicks off at Fort Vachiraprakan in Tak Province, Thailand. This two-week exercise, running until July 15, 2024, is a significant step in strengthening military ties between the two nations.

What is the Maitree Exercise?

A Long-standing Tradition

  • Started in 2006
  • Conducted regularly between Indian and Thai armies
  • Last held in September 2019 in Meghalaya, India


  • 76 Indian Army personnel from Ladakh Scouts and other divisions
  • 76 Royal Thai Army personnel from 1st Battalion, 14 Infantry Regiment of 4 Division

Goals of the Exercise

The Maitree Exercise aims to:

  1. Boost military cooperation between India and Thailand
  2. Improve skills in counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism operations
  3. Enhance joint planning and tactical drills
  4. Promote physical fitness among troops

Key Activities During the Exercise

Participants will practice:

  • Creating a joint operation center
  • Establishing intelligence and surveillance centers
  • Using drones and counterdrone systems
  • Securing landing sites
  • Conducting special heliborne operations
  • Performing cordon and search operations

Why is Maitree’s Exercise Important?

Strengthening Defense Ties

  • Part of broader efforts to increase cooperation in the defense sector
  • Builds on the 2012 Memorandum of Understanding on Defense Cooperation

Enhancing Military Skills

  • Focuses on urban and jungle warfare techniques
  • Improves coordination between the two armies

Promoting Regional Stability

  • Contributes to peace and security in the region
  • Demonstrates India’s commitment to its “Act East” policy

India-Thailand Defense Relations

Maritime Neighbors

India and Thailand share a maritime border in the Andaman Sea, making their defense cooperation crucial for regional security.

Other Joint Military Exercises

  1. Naval Exercises
    • Ex-Ayutthaya: First bilateral naval exercise held in December 2023
    • India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol (Indo-Thai CORPAT): 36th edition held in December 2023
  2. Air Force Exercise
    • Ex-SIAM BHARAT: Joint exercise between Indian and Royal Thai Air Forces

Significance of the Exercise Name

“Maitree” means friendship in Sanskrit, reflecting the spirit of cooperation and goodwill between India and Thailand.

Looking Ahead

As the Maitree Exercise 2024 begins, it represents more than just a military drill. It’s a celebration of the growing partnership between India and Thailand, contributing to regional peace and stability. The exercise showcases the commitment of both nations to work together in facing common challenges and strengthening their defence capabilities.

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