ISLAMABAD - Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif yesterday commended the combat fitness and high morale of the troops engaged in the large-scale offensive and defensive manoeuvres under way in the training area of Multan Corps.

“We have to remain ready for full spectrum of threat. Morale of troops is sky high,” ISPR DG Lt-Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa quoted the army chief as saying on twitter.

The army chief said with achievements in the ongoing war on terror and standard of conventional war training, Pak Army is the best.

Earlier, the army chief also took an aerial view of offensive maneuvers aboard a combat attack helicopter while reviewing exercise of Bahawalpur Crops in Cholistan dessert that concluded yesterday morning.

The exercise involved large-scale integrated maneuvers of infantry, mechanised, armoured, army aviation and Pakistan Air Force (PAF) assets.

The scope of the exercise included offensive and defensive maneuvers by the army to ensure complete dominance of the battlefield, in any conventional war scenario.

The formations and units involved were undergoing the exercises under strenuous field conditions for more than one month and the final phase of the exercises along with the validation was underway.

The large-scale maneuvers were being conducted by the XXX Corps (Gujranwala) and XXXI Corps (Bahawalpur) formations which are tasked with waging war in the deserts of Cholistan and the plains of Punjab, besides holding the vital area which connects Pakistan’s Punjab and parts of Kashmir.

The area is regarded as having critical strategic importance and was the site of major battle in both 1965 and 1971 Indo-Pak wars.