India and Russia put up an emphatic display of deep bilateral ties on Saturday, setting aside recent discord, and came out strongly against terror. Both sides signed 16 important deals including one on S-400 missile systems, a game-changer in countering airborne threats.
Defence production and acquisition agreements were announced after the summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Vladimir Putin.
Apart from the Inter Governmental Agreement on the missile system — worth nearly Rs 39,000 crore — Russia, in a show of “special and privileged strategic partnership”, also agreed to sell Kamov 226T helicopters and four Krivak class stealth frigates to India. The Kamov 226T helicopters will be manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) and Rostec State Corporation of Russia under a joint production plan.
“The agreements on manufacturing of Kamov 226T helicopters, construction of frigates and acquisition and building of other defence platforms are in synergy with India’s technology and security priorities. They also help us achieve the objectives of Make in India,” Prime Minister Modi said after the exchange of agreements.
In his statement, President Vladimir Putin highlighted Russia’s “stable” approach to ties with India and said his government will ensure steady energy cooperation with India to support the expanding Indian economy.
“Sometimes differences appear in some projects over a period due to currency devaluation. But we commit to maintain a steady approach to bilateral projects with India,” said President Putin and added, “we are working on joint development of Sukhoi super jets and passenger aircraft.”
Before beginning official statements, both the leaders started the ground laying work for Units three and four of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant by pressing a button.
(With inputs from Dinakar Peri)