Operation Viraat

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Operation Viraat , along with Operation Trishul, was an anti-insurgency operation launched by the IPKF against the LTTE in April 1988 in Northern Sri Lanka, in the provinces of Mannar to Mullaitivu and Elephant Pass to Vavuniya.

The operation was planned as a result of the evolving doctrine among the Indian high command of conducting search and destroy missions against LTTE strongholds instead of holding key strong points. It utilized approximately 15,000 troops including armoured corps, Paratroop, as well as the infantry troops and army aviation.The operation achieved some success in disrupting LTTE operations,with seizure of weaponry and inflicting limited casualties among the LTTE cadres. By the end of summer 1988, these operations had forced the LTTE to move its stronghold, when it started to operate out of Nithikaikulam and adjacent riverine areas.

During the Operation Viraat, the IPKF uncovered well prepared LTTE defenses, including concrete bunkers with electric generators, as well as cache of arms and reserves. The IPKF also suffered in this unconventional warfare, with the LTTE frequently ambushing IPKF convoys and patrols.


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