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    Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

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    Pinto
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    Re: Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

    Post  Pinto on Thu Sep 08, 2016 5:25 pm

    Firebird wrote:
    Pinto wrote:http://www.asianage.com/india/india-and-russia-keeping-special-partnership-track-248

    Growth in bilateral trade and investment has not been commensurate with other areas of bilateral engagement. Two-way trade continues to languish at an abysmally low level of $10 billion. The two countries have fixed a target of $30 billion by 2025. Several silver linings have appeared recently on the horizon. Some of these include: India’s prospective membership of Eurasian Economic Union, development of International North-South Transport Corridor, trial runs on which took place on August 8, 2016, construction and upgradation of Chabahar seaport to promote and improve connectivity with Central Asia, Russia and Afghanistan.

    India’s membership of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation will provide several opportunities to promote security, stability and economic growth in Central Asia and the region. Regional countries need to collaborate actively to ensure that Afghanistan does not descend into conflict and instability. Russia and India can play a crucial role in this as also in dealing with the scourge of terrorism emanating from Pakistan, Afghanistan and West Asia. Unrest and continuing violence in Syria as well as the uncontrolled spread of Islamic State, terrorism and radicalisation of youth are other challenges that the two countries need to quell and overcome together.

    Both India and Russia are factors of peace, stability, security and economic development, domestically, bilaterally and regionally. Rapidly expanding special and privileged strategic partnership between the two countries bodes well for future of India and Russia as well as the region.
    The author is a former ambassador

    Pinto, or anyone else, do you know how far the North South Corridor is expected to go, long term in regards developing trade between India and Russia?

    In many ways, the 2 countries seem perfect partners.
    Ru = military superpower, vast resources, lots of technology knowhow. But a not so huge population
    India = huge population, need for resources, developing military power, also tech knowhow in other areas.

    The problem is connection. Do they anticipation the long term trade route will be via Central Asia, Pakistan, perhaps Afghanistan? Or by sea and via Iran. Or via China even?

    One good thing is that unlike China or the West, there are no real disputes between Ru and China. If the 2 were put together (which ofcourse is only possible in some ways) they'd perhaps be the global leading power or thereabouts in the not too distant future.

    I don't think a mass transfer of peoples would work. But certainly close collaboration in many other areas. One idea I have is for Indian workers to work in special zones in underpopulated parts of Russia. Say one industry towns, or agricultural areas. They would not get residency, movement or passport rights, as they would be working for both Russia and India. But they would have good wages, potential skill development and allowing both the Indian and Russian economies to grow. They could then return to India and repatriate their post tax earnings. It would be better too for Russia - allowing it to leverage its resources and knowhow - and not falling into the errors Western govts have made in importing cheap labour on mass, with all the cultural problems that may cause.

    So I wonder how far Russia-India trade and development will go. Because currently, despite their undouted synergies, trade is rather modest outside of arms.

    I wonder if Pakistan and Afghanistan would want to get in on this N-South Corridor? The Russia-India route could certainly rival the China-Russia-Europe new silk road.

    I really think success between Ru and India could be massive for both countries. Russia can be uneasy about China, but there shouldn't be any need to be with India. Likewise, NATO countries don't tend to show India (or Russia) much respect. So in many ways, they are natural partners.

    yeah you are right bro actually since cold war one aspect which remained undermined with Russia has been two way trade between our two countries
    which has sky high potential to benefit both countries immensely. Actually this has been realized by both countries leaders now, because since past 2 summit we are seeing more emphasis on trade and not alone defence which is laudable effort

    India is expected to have 70% of its arms of Russian origin for 2 decades more at least and so its hard to get from 90 - 100 in defence so it makes sense to work on trade ties two where both  countries if tried sincerely can achieve 100b$ trade by 2025 not 30b 4 which is the target now

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    Re: Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

    Post  Firebird on Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:58 pm

    Pinto wrote:
    Firebird wrote:
    Pinto wrote:http://www.asianage.com/india/india-and-russia-keeping-special-partnership-track-248

    Growth in bilateral trade and investment has not been commensurate with other areas of bilateral engagement. Two-way trade continues to languish at an abysmally low level of $10 billion. The two countries have fixed a target of $30 billion by 2025. Several silver linings have appeared recently on the horizon. Some of these include: India’s prospective membership of Eurasian Economic Union, development of International North-South Transport Corridor, trial runs on which took place on August 8, 2016, construction and upgradation of Chabahar seaport to promote and improve connectivity with Central Asia, Russia and Afghanistan.

    India’s membership of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation will provide several opportunities to promote security, stability and economic growth in Central Asia and the region. Regional countries need to collaborate actively to ensure that Afghanistan does not descend into conflict and instability. Russia and India can play a crucial role in this as also in dealing with the scourge of terrorism emanating from Pakistan, Afghanistan and West Asia. Unrest and continuing violence in Syria as well as the uncontrolled spread of Islamic State, terrorism and radicalisation of youth are other challenges that the two countries need to quell and overcome together.

    Both India and Russia are factors of peace, stability, security and economic development, domestically, bilaterally and regionally. Rapidly expanding special and privileged strategic partnership between the two countries bodes well for future of India and Russia as well as the region.
    The author is a former ambassador

    Pinto, or anyone else, do you know how far the North South Corridor is expected to go, long term in regards developing trade between India and Russia?

    In many ways, the 2 countries seem perfect partners.
    Ru = military superpower, vast resources, lots of technology knowhow. But a not so huge population
    India = huge population, need for resources, developing military power, also tech knowhow in other areas.

    The problem is connection. Do they anticipation the long term trade route will be via Central Asia, Pakistan, perhaps Afghanistan? Or by sea and via Iran. Or via China even?

    One good thing is that unlike China or the West, there are no real disputes between Ru and China. If the 2 were put together (which ofcourse is only possible in some ways) they'd perhaps be the global leading power or thereabouts in the not too distant future.

    I don't think a mass transfer of peoples would work. But certainly close collaboration in many other areas. One idea I have is for Indian workers to work in special zones in underpopulated parts of Russia. Say one industry towns, or agricultural areas. They would not get residency, movement or passport rights, as they would be working for both Russia and India. But they would have good wages, potential skill development and allowing both the Indian and Russian economies to grow. They could then return to India and repatriate their post tax earnings. It would be better too for Russia - allowing it to leverage its resources and knowhow - and not falling into the errors Western govts have made in importing cheap labour on mass, with all the cultural problems that may cause.

    So I wonder how far Russia-India trade and development will go. Because currently, despite their undouted synergies, trade is rather modest outside of arms.

    I wonder if Pakistan and Afghanistan would want to get in on this N-South Corridor? The Russia-India route could certainly rival the China-Russia-Europe new silk road.

    I really think success between Ru and India could be massive for both countries. Russia can be uneasy about China, but there shouldn't be any need to be with India. Likewise, NATO countries don't tend to show India (or Russia) much respect. So in many ways, they are natural partners.

    yeah you are right bro actually since cold war one aspect which remained undermined with Russia has been two way trade between our two countries
    which has sky high potential to benefit both countries immensely. Actually this has been realized by both countries leaders now, because since past 2 summit we are seeing more emphasis on trade and not alone defence which is laudable effort

    India is expected to have 70% of its arms of Russian origin for 2 decades more at least and so its hard to get from 90 - 100 in defence so it makes sense to work on trade ties two where both  countries if tried sincerely can achieve 100b$ trade by 2025 not 30b 4 which is the target now

    Seems the problem is transport costs.
    I wonder if the route across the Caspian Sea, via Iran and on to Indian ports (or vice versa) will be cost effective and fast enough?

    A cheap and quick route via 4(?) 'Stans or via China is likely to be a long way off. I wonder if Pakistan can come onboard in a transport corridor? As its no longer big mates with America!

    Obviously its tricky for Russia to sell its petrochemicals via Iran. As Iran is also a big petro player. But perhaps there can be some sort of 3 way deal there. (Iran is still having sanctions BS re that).

    I also think huge airships may be a way in the future. Perhaps more cost effective than some huge rail or sea journeys.

    It would take a while for Ru-India trade to match Ru-EU or RU-China trade, but if the logistics can be fixed, then trade could be at a v high level for Russia+India.

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    India, Russia defence talks make sense

    Post  Pinto on Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:02 am

    It did not make much difference but to keep the Indian rulers in good humour, the Obama administration made a departure from its past practice and modified the military logistics agreement, Logistics Support Agreement (LSA) to Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA). The USA has a standard draft text of military logistics agreement to be signed by the countries. Since the Obama administration badly needed on their side and was also aware of the criticism Narendra Modi and his government will have to face for allying with the US, the standard draft was replaced by a new summary text.

    Obviously India preferring to ignore its new friend and rearing to sign a defence deal worth millions of dollars with Russia during the summit level meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin scheduled to take place in October in Goa is significant. The deals that are to be signed include purchase of S-400 air defense missile system, IL-78 multi-role tanker transport by India and the joint upgrading of the SU30MKI and Kamov 28. Naturally the question of what made India look towards Russia arises.

    Nevertheless an insight into the recent developments will make it explicit that four factors prevailed upon the Modi government to look for alternate. First, while US was  unwilling to offer help to India in nuclear propulsion for the proposed construction of its largest-ever warship, the 65,000-tonne aircraft carrier INS Vishal, last week, a Russian delegation visiting New Delhi offered the Indian Navy Russia’s latest supercarrier design, dubbed Project 23000E or Shtorm (Storm). A Russian diplomat based in India confirmed that an offer has been made. This 65,000-ton supercarrier, the second ship of the Vikrant-class, will feature “significant design changes from the lead vessel, the INS Vikrant, including possible nuclear propulsion and Catapult Assisted Take-Off But Arrested Recovery (CATOBAR) and Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch Systems (EMALS).


    India already operates a nuclear-powered Akula-II submarine christened INS Chakra, which was acquired on a 10-year lease from Russia in April 2012 under a $900 million deal inked earlier. Major defence deals with Russia, ranging from the Rs 39,000 crore acquisition of five S-400 Triumf advanced air defence missile systems to the $1.5 billion lease of a second nuclear-powered submarine, are also in the offing.

    Secondly, the Modi government is not sure of the approach and attitude of the new US President towards India.
    Though Obama maintained a friendly relation with Modi, he did not persuade the American Senate to recognise India as a “global strategic and defence partner” of the US. It is not yet clear whether Obama really intended to confer this privilege on India.

    A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address to a joint session of Congress, top Republican senator John McCain had moved an amendment to the National Defence Authorisation Act (NDAA-17) which if passed would have recognised India as a global strategic and defence partner. But it could not get through.  McCain had expressed disappointment. What USA did was to acknowledge India as a “major defence partner” through a joint statement issued after Modi held talks with Obama which supported defence-related trade and technology. In fact Modi had expressed surprise as to why the US Senate failed to recognise India as a “global strategic and defence partner”.

    Yet another factor that appears to have prevailed upon the Modi government to make a tactical shift in its policy towards USA has been the increasing say of Russia in the global affair. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump only a week back vowed to seek better relations with China and Russia if elected. He also announced that he would make U.S. allies bear more of the financial burden for their defense. Trump, a bitter critic of Barack Obama’s foreign policy, accuses him of letting China take advantage of the USA. He pledged to “shake the rust off America’s foreign policy.” For Trump “an easing of tensions with Russia from a position of strength” is possible.

    Meanwhile Russia has been trying to recover its friendship with China. Its joint military exercises in the East China Sea are a clear show of strength against USA and Japan. The US sanctions have in fact upgraded China’s importance to Russia. Closer ties between Moscow and Beijing have been expected long before the Ukraine crisis. A new foreign policy concept published by the Russian government in 2013 noted the importance of friendly relations with China and India, and Russia and China have often joined together to oppose the western members of the United Nations Security Council.

    With a loosening grip over the Western market, Russia is slowly picking up its own pivot towards the East, drawing closer than ever to China and finding new friends like Pakistan. Recently Moscow closed a landmark military deal with Islamabad – the first in many decades – while its relationship with Beijing continues to develop.

    Back home, the peoples’ perception towards USA might have played a major role in making the Modi government look towards Russia. A vast section of the Indians feel that USA has been treating properly. The Modi government has been simply acting on the advice and suggestions of the Obama administration, which mostly are against Indian interests.

    Though US military company has agreed to produce aircraft F 16 under make in India programme, the fact remains that Russia is the first country to have agreed to take the initiative under the “Make in India” umbrella in two key strategic sectors — nuclear and defence. This move underlines that Russia has confidence in India’s economy.

    On September 13, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin will be visiting India to hold the intergovernmental committee on technical and economic cooperation. This will also pave the way for the bilateral meeting between both leaders. Modi and Putin will be holding their bilateral meeting on October 15 in Goa on the sidelines of the BRICS Summit. India and Russia are also expected to discuss the expansion of the civil nuclear cooperation between them. Russia kept its promise and on August 10, Modi and Putin inaugurated, through video conference, the Kudankulam Unit 1, which is a 1,000 MWt power plant.

    Both sides are also expected to sign an agreement on the fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) project or the Perspective Multirole Fighter (PMF). The talks for the project were revived earlier this year. It took a back seat when India opted for the French Rafale fighter jets. The final R&D contract for the FGFA was on hold till now despite the two countries having first inked an inter-governmental agreement in 2007.

    Russian-Indian cooperation in the defence sector is not just of “seller-buyer” but works on complex joint development projects with participation of Indian public and private companies, and licensed production in India. It is also encouraging that India and Russia agreed to strengthen the defense partnership in line with the “Make in India” programme.

    http://www.freepressjournal.in/analysis/india-russia-defence-talks-make-sense-arun-srivastava/924697

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    India, Russia to review bilateral ties ahead of Vladimir Putin’s visit

    Post  Pinto on Tue Sep 13, 2016 10:48 am

    Vladimir Putin will be travelling to India in October for BRICS Summit and will also hold a bilateral Summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

    Ahead of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit, India and Russia will review the status of bilateral ties on Tuesday as also lay the ground for next month’s Presidential visit.

    The discussions will be part of the 22nd Session of the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission (IRIGC-TEC) where External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will lead the Indian delegation, while Dmitry Olegovich Rogozin, Deputy Chairman, will head the Russian side.

    Asserting that India and Russia share a special and privileged strategic partnership, External Affairs Ministry said Swaraj and Rogozin would review the work of various working groups and subgroups under the IRIGC-TEC mechanism and discuss the preparations for the forthcoming visit of Putin.
    Putin will be travelling to India in October for BRICS Summit and will also hold a bilateral Summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

    The India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technological and Cultural Cooperation (IRIGC-TEC) provides a framework for review of a broad spectrum of bilateral issues covering trade, economic, scientific, educational and cultural cooperation.

    The last meeting of the Commission was held in Moscow in October 2015.


    http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/india-russia-to-review-bilateral-ties-ahead-of-vladimir-putins-visit-3027824/

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    Moscow sees no problem in India’s re-exporting Russian Mi-24 to Afghanistan

    Post  Pinto on Wed Sep 14, 2016 2:22 pm

    First published by TASS.

    https://in.rbth.com/news/2016/09/13...exporting-russian-mi-24-to-afghanistan_629579


    Russia sees no problem in India’s possible re-exporting Russian-made Mi-24 helicopters to Afghanistan, a senior Russian diplomat said on Tuesday.

    "If the Indians want to sell them, there is a special procedure for that. I don’t see any problems," Zamir Kabulov, Russian president’s envoy for Afghanistan and director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s second Asia department, said, adding that India has Russia's authorization to re-export helicopters.




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    Moscow invites New Delhi to take part in Arctic projects

    Post  Pinto on Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:58 am

    https://in.rbth.com/economics/cooperation/2016/09/14/moscow-invites-new-delhi-to-take-part-in-arctic-projects_629811

    India may take part in the development of the Arctic shelf along with Russia and China, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on Tuesday.

    "There are definitely interesting projects in the sphere of shelf development and as we establish a joint instrument for the development of the Arctic shelf we plan to invite there not only Chinese but also Indian partners," he told journalists after talks of the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technical and Cultural Cooperation.


    Apart from that that, he said there is a possibility of joint use of the Northern Sea Route.

    According to the Russian deputy prime minister, India is interested in establishing an international transport corridor North-South, from Russia’s St. Petersburg to India’s Mumbai, to ship cargoes, commodity and passengers between the Baltic countries and India.

    "The transport corridor is an extremely interesting thing, and I think it has good chances to be realized," Rogozin stressed.

    The India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technical and Cultural Cooperation (IRIGC-TEC) met in New Delhi on Tuesday, to review the status of ongoing bilateral projects and further broaden strategic cooperation in the critical areas of trade and commerce, energy, space and high technology.

    First published by TASS.

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    Kudankulam Could Work On Next-Generation N-Fuel In Near-Term, Says Russia

    Post  Pinto on Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:32 am

    NEW DELHI: The Russian-built Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KNPP) in Tamil Nadu could, in the near future, be operating on the newer generation TVS-2M fuel assembly, which offers increased uranium capacity, improved heat reliability and enhanced operational safety, a senior Russian official has said.

    "Today we can offer our Indian colleagues a more modern design of nuclear fuel -- TVS-2M -- with improved economic and technical characteristics," Oleg A Grigoryev, Vice President of TVEL, the fuel company run by the ROSATOM national atomic energy corporation, told IANS in an e-mail interview from Moscow.

    "Negotiations on this issue are already underway with Indian partners. We are ready to change KNPP's fuel as soon as possible according to all requirements of the Indian Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) for greater reliability and security of fuel assemblies," he said.

    Currently, the first two 1,000 MW units are operational at Kudankulam. Four more are in the pipeline.

    According to Mr Grigoryev, the only restriction on supplying the advanced nuclear fuel assemblies is the existing agreement over the UTVS fuel now being supplied.

    "The only restriction for this project is time. As soon as the UTVS fuel has been used, the station will operate on the new fuel," Mr Grigoryev said.

    TVEL accounts for around 17 per cent of the global nuclear fuel market. The company supplies fuel worldwide for research, transport and commercial power reactors.

    TVEL's fuel development programmes for Russian-designed VVER light water reactors in Russia and abroad aim to increase their service life and cost-effectiveness.

    "After transfer to TVS-2M the customer will not face additional difficulties. The new fuel will save (create) 60-70 operational days in around three years (due to reduced downtime)," the Russian said.

    Mr Grigoryev also spoke of "localisation" of production.

    "We are ready to support the efforts of our Indian partners in the localisation of the production of nuclear fuel in India. But it should be understood that the plant should be cost-effective," he said, echoing the argument of Chinese solar module manufacturers, for instance, who have to grapple with India's domestic component requirements under the National Solar Programme.

    "We have repeatedly carried out economic calculations and estimated the number of plants to which fuel has to be supplied to make it profitable. The result, together with regional and country-specificity, ranges from 10 to 12 units," Mr Grigoryev said.

    "We hope that in the next 10 years the first components produced in India will be used in the fuel for Indian nuclear power plants," he said, adding, however, that preparations need to start right away "to work on adaptation of Indian legislation to Russian standards, to teach Indians who will be engaged in manufacturing."

    Russia has offered India a new range of reactor units -- the VVER-Toi (typical optimised, enhanced information) design -- for the third and fourth units of the Kudankulam project.

    In this connection, former Atomic Energy Commission chairman and ex-secretary Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) MR Srinivasan said TVEL has supplied fuel for KNPP and fuel pellets for India's Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors.

    "India will work with TVEL on localisation of nuclear fuel. This could be achieved in about five years," he said. "There will be more localisation for KNPP units 3, 4, 5 and 6. Cooperation between India and TVEL will grow in the coming years," he added.

    An inter-governmental agreement between India and Russia was signed in December 2008 for setting up Kudankulam's units 3 to 6. The ground-breaking ceremony for construction of units 3 and 4 was performed earlier this year.

    According to Mr Grigoryev, India plans to increase the number of Russian design reactors to 12 in the next 10-15 years.

    http://www.ndtv.com/tamil-nadu-news/kudankulam-could-work-on-next-generation-n-fuel-in-near-term-says-russia-1459118

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    'India's unique security ties with Russia remain unaffected'

    Post  Pinto on Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:33 am

    India's "unique security ties" with Russia remain unaffected by the growing Indo-US relationship, highly placed sources said here ahead of President Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to this country.

    The strategic ties with Russia have been "persistent, continuous and critical" element of India's foreign policy policy, the sources said.



    Putin will arrive in India in mid-October for the five- nation BRICS (Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa) Summit to be held in Goa as well as annual Indo-Russia bilateral Summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

    While admitting that Indo-Russia ties in the area of trade and economy have not remained the same, the sources said the effort during the upcoming bilateral Summit would be to bring the relationship "back on track".
    The sources also mentioned that Indo-Russia military

    cooperation was undergoing a change as India not only was procuring defence equipment off the shelf, but was also inviting Russians to take part in 'make in India' defence joint ventures.

    In this regard, they cited the recent agreement on the manufacture of 200 Russian Kamov 226 T light choppers in India. The deal is estimated to be USD one billion under the 'make in India' initiative.

    The sources also brought out importance of regional consultations with Russia such as on Afghanistan.

    Both India and Russia know that the bilateral ties were "vital" for balance in Asia-Pacific region, they said.

    They also warned that Indo-Russia ties should not be reduced to the "litmus test" of Russia-Pakistan relationship.
    Apart from the conventional key areas which were very

    critical components of the bilateral ties including military technology cooperation, energy and civil nuclear sector, India was also keen to explore the new areas of collaboration such as infrastructure and railways, the sources said.

    Talking about robust ties in the diamond sector, they said there were areas like agriculture, food processing, mining and ship building where Russians have strong expertise which could be used by India.

    This will also give a boost to bilateral commercial ties. Bilateral trade in 2015 amounted to USD 7.83 billion (decline of 17.74 per cent over the previous year), with Indian export amounting to USD 2.26 billion and imports from Russia USD 5.57 billion.

    In December 2014, the leaders of the two countries set a target of USD 30 billion bilateral trade by 2025.

    http://www.business-standard.com/article/pti-stories/india-s-unique-security-ties-with-russia-remain-unaffected-116091501090_1.html

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    Russia, India to Hold Indra-2016 Joint Military Drills in September-October

    Post  Pinto on Fri Sep 16, 2016 2:16 pm

    Russia and India joint military exercises will take place in the Russian Far East in late September - early October.

    China Border on September 14-27 NEW DELHI (Sputnik) — Joint military exercises between Russia and India, dubbed Indra-2016, will take place in the Russian Far East in late September — early October, a source in the Indian Defense Ministry told RIA Novosti Wednesday.

    "The drills are scheduled to be conducted on September 22 — October 2. Each side will have be represented by 250 servicemen," the source said.. The exercises will take place on the territory of the Russian Eastern Military District. The first Indra drills were held in 2003. They serve to facilitate cooperation and foster the exchange of relevant experience between the Indian and Russian armed forces.


    Read more: https://sputniknews.com/military/20160914/1045288117/russia-india-miliatry-drill.html

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    Re: Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

    Post  Pinto on Sat Sep 17, 2016 6:35 pm

    https://sputniknews.com/politics/20160916/1045382077/india-russia-best-friends.html

    Despite growing trade and political ties with the US, India continues to accord top priority to its unique relationship with Russia.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — Putting all speculation to rest, it is now confirmed that India considers Russia its most reliable friend. One of the most senior diplomats in India’s External Affairs Ministry has asserted that despite India’s growing cooperation with the US on many global agendas, Russia remains the one friend that India believes will be the first to respond to a crisis call.

    India’s Ministry of External Affairs is currently preparing for a crucial diplomatic summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin to be held in Goa in India’s south next month on the sidelines of the BRICS summit.

    A senior diplomat involved in the preparations for the summit, told reporters on condition of anonymity in New Delhi, “Diplomats often wonder where they would place their first call if India faced a security challenge. The answer is Russia.”

    This statement holds immense significance as it comes amid fledgling closeness between Russia and India’s foremost adversary Pakistan. The two countries plan to hold a joint military exercise soon. Moreover, Pakistan has displayed keen interest in purchasing the Su-35 combat aircraft from Russia, a move which troubles India. Moscow’s ties with Beijing have also been a matter of concern for India. However, the unparalleled history of mutual trust remains unhindered by individual aspirations.

    During the Kargil War in 1999 with Pakistan when Indian forces ran out of arms and ammunition, Russia supplied India's stocks upon a single request from India, said a source.


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    Re: Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

    Post  Pinto on Mon Sep 19, 2016 2:55 pm

    http://in.rbth.com/world/2016/09/19/russia-strongly-condemns-uri-attack_631299

    Russia strongly condemns Uri attack

    19 September 2016 ALEXANDER KORABLINOV, RIR

    Moscow expresses concern that base was attacked from Pakistani territory.

    The Russian Foreign Ministry has strongly condemned the September 18 attack on an army base in Uri, India, which claimed the lives of 18 Indian soldiers.

    “We strongly condemn the terrorist attack against an army base in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri in the early hours of September 18, which killed 17 and injured 30 service personnel. We offer our condolences to the families of the victims and wish a rapid recovery to all those injured,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

    “Regarding the Pathankot Indian air base attack in January 2016, we are very concerned about the terrorist attacks near the Line of Control,” the ministry added. “We are also concerned about the fact that, according to New Delhi, the army base near Uri was attacked from Pakistani territory.”

    Russia called for a proper investigation. “We believe that this criminal act will be investigated properly, and that its organisers and perpetrators will be held accountable,” the ministry said. “We confirm our continued support for the Indian government’s counter terrorism efforts.”

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    Will Russia-Pakistan joint drill alter Moscow-Delhi ties?

    Post  Pinto on Sun Sep 25, 2016 8:10 am

    NEW DELHI: This week India-Russia relationship moved from being 'special' to regular. As Russian troops landed in Pakistan for a two-week counter-terrorism joint exercise+ , the 'degree of separation' of the original strategic partners only increased, coming as it did in less than a week after the Uri terror strike.

    Even though India and Russia are also engaged in counter-terrorism exercises in Vladivostok (for the eighth year running), watching Russian troops land in Pakistan is a new experience in the region. In another couple of weeks, India will host Russian President Vladimir Putin for the annual summit when India and Russia will struggle yet again to put economic ballast into their strategic partnership.

    After years of trying to get the private sector to invest, the government has got into the act - OVL has invested in Rosneft; Indian pharmaceutical companies are making in Russia; Indian companies are buying diamonds directly from Russia instead of a third country; and civil nuclear cooperation is on a roll. Russia is central to India's foreign policy goals and to the balance of power in Asia.

    "The challenge for us is to keep the India-Russia relationship+ stable in a loosening great power universe," a source said. Russia remains India's top defence supplier, but Indian officials confirmed they have asked Moscow to make a choice between Pakistan and India. It's a red line that Moscow has breached and things may never be the same again.

    However, Russia's opening to Pakistan was inevitable. Indian analysts believe it is a subset of the biggest pivot in recent times: Russia's evolving relationship with China. Many would say it is a reaction to India's US gambit, but that would be too simplistic, because after the Cold War and until the sanctions, Russia had itself opened up to the US.

    The Russian pivot to China is now virtually complete. With lowering oil prices, sharply contracting economy and strained ties with Europe and the US, Russia, India believes, was pushed towards China. Their history has not been great and Russia retains some suspicion about China, but the current terms of engagement are dramatically different, because Russia is now sharing technologies etc with China it would never have dreamed of earlier. That could pose problem for India going forward.

    India's opening to the US, Israel and Europe for weapons was a statement of strategic importance and both Russia and China took lessons from it. China is still under an EU arms embargo and neither the US nor Israel will sell the big toys to Beijing. Hence, Russia and China's burgeoning defence and tech relationship was natural. Except Russia is no longer the power it was and China is a superpower at the gate, a reality that determines who dominates that relationship.

    It was only natural Russia would open up to Pakistan, China's closest ally at present. Last week Russian and Chinese navies conducted drills+ in South China Sea+ , where Russia has taken China's side. This is a function largely of Russia's worsening ties with the US+ . In Afghanistan, Russia believes IS is the real threat, not the Taliban, something Pakistan is at pains to push.
    Stay updated on the go with Times of India News App. Click here to download it for your device.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Will-Russia-Pakistan-joint-drill-alter-Moscow-Delhi-ties/articleshow/54503220.cms

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    Re: Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

    Post  magnumcromagnon on Sun Sep 25, 2016 4:48 pm

    Pinto wrote:NEW DELHI: This week India-Russia relationship moved from being 'special' to regular. As Russian troops landed in Pakistan for a two-week counter-terrorism joint exercise+ , the 'degree of separation' of the original strategic partners only increased, coming as it did in less than a week after the Uri terror strike.

    Even though India and Russia are also engaged in counter-terrorism exercises in Vladivostok (for the eighth year running), watching Russian troops land in Pakistan is a new experience in the region. In another couple of weeks, India will host Russian President Vladimir Putin for the annual summit when India and Russia will struggle yet again to put economic ballast into their strategic partnership.

    After years of trying to get the private sector to invest, the government has got into the act - OVL has invested in Rosneft; Indian pharmaceutical companies are making in Russia; Indian companies are buying diamonds directly from Russia instead of a third country; and civil nuclear cooperation is on a roll. Russia is central to India's foreign policy goals and to the balance of power in Asia.

    "The challenge for us is to keep the India-Russia relationship+ stable in a loosening great power universe," a source said. Russia remains India's top defence supplier, but Indian officials confirmed they have asked Moscow to make a choice between Pakistan and India. It's a red line that Moscow has breached and things may never be the same again.

    However, Russia's opening to Pakistan was inevitable. Indian analysts believe it is a subset of the biggest pivot in recent times: Russia's evolving relationship with China. Many would say it is a reaction to India's US gambit, but that would be too simplistic, because after the Cold War and until the sanctions, Russia had itself opened up to the US.

    The Russian pivot to China is now virtually complete. With lowering oil prices, sharply contracting economy and strained ties with Europe and the US, Russia, India believes, was pushed towards China. Their history has not been great and Russia retains some suspicion about China, but the current terms of engagement are dramatically different, because Russia is now sharing technologies etc with China it would never have dreamed of earlier. That could pose problem for India going forward.

    India's opening to the US, Israel and Europe for weapons was a statement of strategic importance and both Russia and China took lessons from it. China is still under an EU arms embargo and neither the US nor Israel will sell the big toys to Beijing. Hence, Russia and China's burgeoning defence and tech relationship was natural. Except Russia is no longer the power it was and China is a superpower at the gate, a reality that determines who dominates that relationship.

    It was only natural Russia would open up to Pakistan, China's closest ally at present. Last week Russian and Chinese navies conducted drills+ in South China Sea+ , where Russia has taken China's side. This is a function largely of Russia's worsening ties with the US+ . In Afghanistan, Russia believes IS is the real threat, not the Taliban, something Pakistan is at pains to push.
    Stay updated on the go with Times of India News App. Click here to download it for your device.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Will-Russia-Pakistan-joint-drill-alter-Moscow-Delhi-ties/articleshow/54503220.cms

    Indians are a strange bunch, you expect Russia not to have strategic ties with China, but you guys make all kinds of ties with U.S., you expect Russia to not have military ties with Pakistan, but then India goes out to make substantial military ties with Ukraine. If there was any deterioration of strategic ties, it was mostly on the Indian side....FFS who decided to cut such mega-deals with Ukraine?

    Pinto
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    Re: Russia - India Strategic Relationship: News

    Post  Pinto on Sun Sep 25, 2016 4:54 pm

    magnumcromagnon wrote:
    Pinto wrote:NEW DELHI: This week India-Russia relationship moved from being 'special' to regular. As Russian troops landed in Pakistan for a two-week counter-terrorism joint exercise+ , the 'degree of separation' of the original strategic partners only increased, coming as it did in less than a week after the Uri terror strike.

    Even though India and Russia are also engaged in counter-terrorism exercises in Vladivostok (for the eighth year running), watching Russian troops land in Pakistan is a new experience in the region. In another couple of weeks, India will host Russian President Vladimir Putin for the annual summit when India and Russia will struggle yet again to put economic ballast into their strategic partnership.

    After years of trying to get the private sector to invest, the government has got into the act - OVL has invested in Rosneft; Indian pharmaceutical companies are making in Russia; Indian companies are buying diamonds directly from Russia instead of a third country; and civil nuclear cooperation is on a roll. Russia is central to India's foreign policy goals and to the balance of power in Asia.

    "The challenge for us is to keep the India-Russia relationship+ stable in a loosening great power universe," a source said. Russia remains India's top defence supplier, but Indian officials confirmed they have asked Moscow to make a choice between Pakistan and India. It's a red line that Moscow has breached and things may never be the same again.

    However, Russia's opening to Pakistan was inevitable. Indian analysts believe it is a subset of the biggest pivot in recent times: Russia's evolving relationship with China. Many would say it is a reaction to India's US gambit, but that would be too simplistic, because after the Cold War and until the sanctions, Russia had itself opened up to the US.

    The Russian pivot to China is now virtually complete. With lowering oil prices, sharply contracting economy and strained ties with Europe and the US, Russia, India believes, was pushed towards China. Their history has not been great and Russia retains some suspicion about China, but the current terms of engagement are dramatically different, because Russia is now sharing technologies etc with China it would never have dreamed of earlier. That could pose problem for India going forward.

    India's opening to the US, Israel and Europe for weapons was a statement of strategic importance and both Russia and China took lessons from it. China is still under an EU arms embargo and neither the US nor Israel will sell the big toys to Beijing. Hence, Russia and China's burgeoning defence and tech relationship was natural. Except Russia is no longer the power it was and China is a superpower at the gate, a reality that determines who dominates that relationship.

    It was only natural Russia would open up to Pakistan, China's closest ally at present. Last week Russian and Chinese navies conducted drills+ in South China Sea+ , where Russia has taken China's side. This is a function largely of Russia's worsening ties with the US+ . In Afghanistan, Russia believes IS is the real threat, not the Taliban, something Pakistan is at pains to push.
    Stay updated on the go with Times of India News App. Click here to download it for your device.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Will-Russia-Pakistan-joint-drill-alter-Moscow-Delhi-ties/articleshow/54503220.cms

    Indians are a strange bunch, you expect Russia not to have strategic ties with China, but you guys make all kinds of ties with U.S., you expect Russia to not have military ties with Pakistan, but then India goes out to make substantial military ties with Ukraine. If there was any deterioration of strategic ties, it was mostly on the Indian side....FFS who decided to cut such mega-deals with Ukraine?

    A country even after diversifying its arms buy from Isreal, France and US still has 70% of its arms buy out from Russia is bound to get worried when Russia holds exercises with pak in areas disputed between india and pakistan.A strange country India has 40b$ deals in pipeline with Russia waiting to be signed in next 1 year is bound to get worried and concerned. This strange country has bought around 300 SU30MKI if average price is 80-100m $ with weapons cost then its works out to be around 24-33b $ in last 15 yrs. India is import dependent for its needs on Russia for next 3 decades atleast is bound to get concerned

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    The Russian bull in South Asia shop

    Post  Pinto on Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:09 am

    Russia’s recent diplomatic mess in India happened because the bilateral relationship has hardly gone beyond defence

    It is no exaggeration to state that Russia—previously, the Soviet Union—has been India’s most reliable partner post-Independence. But a gradual shift has been underway for the past few years. Russia’s decision to send a mechanized infantry unit of its southern military command for joint military exercises with Pakistani troops is part of the shift. The Russians were clever to time it with the India-Russia joint military exercises in Ussuriysk district.

    But then the Uri attack happened and reports started trickling in that Russia had cancelled its joint military exercise with Pakistan. Given the weight of history, this development was not surprising. Except that it was untrue. Not only did Russia go ahead with the exercises but the state-run news agency TASS even reported that the opening ceremony would be held at an army school in Rattu in Gilgit-Baltistan. Given the disputed status of that territory and the recent war of words between India and Pakistan on the same, this was a red line crossed as far as New Delhi was concerned.

    Quickly realizing the diplomatic quicksand they had entered, the Russians took corrective measures. TASS removed the details of Gilgit-Baltistan locations from its website and the Russian embassy in New Delhi issued a clarification that the sole venue of military exercises in Pakistan is Cherat. All other reports, the embassy said, were “erroneous and mischievous”.

    What explains the Russian desire to strengthen ties with Pakistan but without infuriating New Delhi? A part of the answer lies in the growing strategic and defence partnership between New Delhi and Washington. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri), the share of the US in Indian arms imports has climbed from 0.18% in 1995-2000 to 13.78% in 2011-15. The surge in arms imports from Israel started even earlier but that too with the US in the loop. The decline in the share of Russian imports is not too great: It decreased from 76.52% during 2006-10 to 70.44% during 2011-15 but it remains roughly similar to the share of 71% during 1995-2000. However, with India being called a “major defence partner” of the US, the Russians see the writing on the wall.

    With low commodity prices and Western sanctions following Moscow’s annexation of Crimea, the Russian economy is under tremendous pressure. The desire to diversify its arms market is natural. In June 2014, it lifted an arms embargo on Pakistan and the two countries signed a military cooperation agreement a few months later. Earlier this year, Russia agreed to sell four Mi-35 attack helicopters to Pakistan. Su-35 fighter jets may be next in line.

    But the diversification is easier said than done. Moscow fears that overplaying the Pakistan card may accelerate the Americanization of Indian defence supplies. With a sharp contraction in Chinese purchases, the Russian defence industry is today over-reliant on India. The Indian share in Russian arms exports has increased, according to Sipri data, from 23.36% in 1995-2000 to 39.09% during 2011-15.

    To round off the complicated picture of Russian arms deals in South Asia, India has recently sold, with Moscow’s nod, four Russian origin Mi-25 attack helicopters to Afghanistan to fight the Pakistan-backed Taliban. India also has an arrangement with Russia to pay for the arms and equipment the latter sells to Afghanistan.

    It is not just Russia which is attempting a tightrope walk. India too has taken positions on Crimea and Syria which are more in line with Moscow’s thinking than Washington’s. New Delhi believes the West’s rigid stance vis-à-vis Russia has only achieved a closer Moscow-Beijing embrace. It has also increased the probability of a Moscow-Beijing-Rawalpindi axis evolving.

    The India-Russia relationship has had its hiccups. The high point was clearly the bilateral treaty of 1971 which helped India’s offensive in East Pakistan. But in 1962, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev delayed the transfer of MiG-21 aircraft till the border war between India and China had ended. In an attempt to repair Sino-Soviet mistrust, Khrushchev told Chinese ambassador Liu Xiao that the Chinese were USSR’s “brothers” while Indians merely “friends”. Khrushchev assured Liu that there was no question of Soviet neutrality between India and China.

    The other major disappointment came when the Soviet Union decided to broker peace between India and Pakistan in the 1965 war. India had to cede all its wartime gains under Soviet pressure at Tashkent. As K. Shankar Bajpai wrote in The Indian Express last September, the threat of withdrawal of the Soviet veto in the UN security council (UNSC) did the trick.

    In more recent years, Russia has indeed supported New Delhi’s entry into the UNSC. But its attitude towards the expansion of the council—and hence towards Indian entry—has been found wanting. It obviously helps Russia if its largest arms purchaser remains dependent on it for support inside the security council.

    The Cherat and Ussuriysk exercises and the mess that came with them should be seen in the historical perspective of the India-Russia bilateral relationship and the current flux in the arms market. This mess happened because India-Russia cooperation has hardly gone beyond defence. The bilateral trade in 2015 was a measly $7.83 billion. The India-US relationship encompasses a far greater number of areas and bilateral trade in 2015 was more than $132 billion. Clearly, a different world is evolving and so is the new normal of India-Russia ties.

    http://www.livemint.com/Opinion/yto02BCIHvApwsFKwDkLMO/The-Russian-bull-in-South-Asia-shop.html

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    India Approves $3.2 Bln Deal to Acquire Two Russian Oil Fields

    Post  Pinto on Wed Sep 28, 2016 5:36 pm

    The Indian government has approved another high value acquisition in Russian oil and gas fields.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) – In a race to acquire more energy assets in Russia, India swiftly finalized the deal. “The government approved a Consortium comprising Oil India Limited (OIL), Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) and Bharat Petro Resources Limited (BPRL) for acquiring a 23.9 percent stake in JSC Vankorneft and 29.9 percent stake in LLC Taas-Yuryakh from M/s Rosneft Oil Company. The Consortium will be paying USD 2020.35 million for acquiring stakes in Vankorneft and USD 1242 million for acquiring stakes in Taas-Yuryakh,” a statement released by the Indian government read.


    image upload no registration

    Indian Consortium will receive 6.56 million metric ton oil from Vankorneft while 1.5 Million Metric Ton oil would be received from Taas-Yuryakh by 2019. Russian Oil major Rosneft operates Vankor and Tass-Yuryakh fields and are its wholly owned subsidiaries.

    The government stated that the acquisition is in line with India’s stated objective of adding high quality international assets to its Exploration & Production portfolio and thereby augmenting India's energy security. Earlier in May 2016 ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL) completed the formalities of acquiring a 15% stake in Vankorneft at the cost of USD 1.284 billion.

    image search

    Earlier, Sputnik had reported that ONGC Videsh Ltd is exploring the opportunity to acquire a 49% stake in Rosneft's Tagul field. According to sources, the deal is likely to be around USD 1 billion, though nothing has been officially penned down yet. Since Tagul field is yet not operational, OVL will have to share the cost of making the field ready for production.

    India currently imports more than 200 MT of crude oil ever year. The government aims to cut this figure down by 50% by the year 2030.


    Read more: https://sputniknews.com/business/20160928/1045781907/india-russia-oil-fields.html

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    War support: What India can expect from Russia

    Post  Pinto on Fri Sep 30, 2016 6:47 am

    29 September 2016 RAKESH KRISHNAN SIMHA

    India no longer needs Russia to come to its defence, but in any future war it would expect Moscow to ensure the smooth supply of weapons and spares.


    International support can be a multiplier in any conflict. In the 1971 War, Russian support was a critical factor that allowed India to wrap up a quick and decisive victory. Moscow kept the western and Chinese hounds out of the fight so that the Indian military could do its job without worrying about a second or third front.

    On December 3, the Pakistan Air Force recklessly attacked 11 Indian airfields. India officially declared war, launching retaliatory air strikes deep into Pakistan. As Indian armour scythed through Pakistan’s defences – both in its eastern and western halves – the world quickly took sides.

    While Russia and its allies had India’s back, the western powers and India’s Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) buddies tilted against India. On December 4, then US ambassador to the United Nations George H. Bush – who would later become US President – introduced a resolution in the UN Security Council calling for a ceasefire and the withdrawal of the armed forces by India and Pakistan. Since only Indian forces were inside Pakistan, the move was meant to pressure India. The resolution – which was backed by 104 countries – was vetoed by Russia. Only 10 countries stood by India.

    India’s sweeping victories on the battlefield unnerved the West, which didn’t want its ally Pakistan to be humiliated. The US sought to force a ceasefire by sponsoring two more United Nations resolutions that censured India. However, Moscow used its veto to block all anti-India resolutions.

    пустым не оставлять!!
    Russian weapons that India could deploy in war
    The Indian leadership was so sure of Russian diplomatic and military support that it did not panic even when US President Richard Nixon sent the US Seventh Fleet sailing up the Bay of Bengal in a move widely seen as threatening Indian cities with nuclear bombing.

    The following anecdote illustrates India’s calm response to America’s gunboat diplomacy. During a tri-services briefing held for Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Admiral S.M. Nanda, then navy chief, intervened and said: “Madam, the US Seventh Fleet is sailing into the Bay of Bengal.” The Prime Minister did not let that news interrupt the meeting. After sometime, the admiral repeated, “Madam, I have to inform you that the Seventh Fleet is sailing into the Bay of Bengal.” She cut him off immediately: “Admiral, I heard you the first time, let us go on with the briefing.”

    The Prime Minister’s nonchalance was due to the Indo-Soviet Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Cooperation that India and Russia had inked a few months earlier. The agreement had a secret clause which made it mandatory for Russia to intervene on India’s side if it was attacked. Indira Gandhi knew that if the Americans or the Chinese attacked, the Russians would intervene. Russian divisions on the border across China’s Sinkiang province were on standby with nuclear artillery.

    Drama at the UN
    With the Pakistan military getting a hammering, the mood in that country was dark. The Russian vetoes on top of this completely demoralised the Pakistani leadership. On December 15, as the Pakistan Army was facing capitulation, Foreign Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto walked out of the UN Security Council and said: “I hate this body. I don't want to see their faces again. I'd rather go back to a destroyed Pakistan.”

    Bhutto's parting words to the Council, before he ripped up his notes, pushed back his chair and rose, were these:

    “Mr President, I am not a rat. I've never ratted in my life. I have faced assassination attempts, I've faced imprisonment. Today I am not ratting, but I am leaving your Security Council.

    “I find it disgraceful to my person and to my country to remain here a moment longer. Impose any decision, have a treaty worse than Versailles, legalise aggression, legalise occupation – I will not be a party to it. We will fight. My country harkens for me.

    “Why should I waste my time here in the Security Council? I will not be a party to the ignominious surrender of part of my country. You can take your Security Council; here you are. I am going.”

    Bhutto continued: “We have been frustrated by the veto. Let's build a monument for the veto. Let's build a monument for impotence and incapacity.”

    Turning to Yakov A. Malik, the Soviet delegate, Bhutto said: “You throw out your chest and you pound the table. You don't talk like Comrade Malik, but like Czar Malik. I am glad you are smiling. I am not, my heart is breaking.”

    Future conflict scenario
    The Russian vetoes clearly helped India block the barrage of international criticism that came its way. However, that was in 1971 when Moscow and New Delhi had common opponents in the West and China. Almost a half century later, the situation has taken a dramatic about turn with Russia and China now ‘semi-allies’ and India burying the hatchet with the US.

    пустым не оставлять!!
    Indian weapons of Russian origin you barely knew existed
    The good news for both countries is that India no longer needs a Russian veto. India has given up its NAM (pipe) dream and is internationally respected for its economic success story. In any future war, it is unlikely to find itself the target of UN resolutions. Plus, the world knows Pakistan exports terror so except for some Arab countries, India won't face much external pressure.

    Another major difference is that unlike in 1971, India is today a militarily powerful country and doesn’t need the protection of a Russian naval fleet. Although it may not be able to sustain a two-front war, India can easily steamroll Pakistan.

    However, it should not be forgotten that even as the US foreign policy apparatus (the State Department) is making a big show of support for India, the Defence Department is more honest and open. It continues to be Pakistan’s patron, and the Pentagon generals will not let the US abandon one of the world’s most strategically located countries. Pakistan’s army chief Raheel Sharief was seen in the company of US Secretary of State John Kerry this week.

    In a future war, all that India expects of Russia is to make sure the parts pipeline doesn’t slow down. Over 70 per cent of India’s military equipment is of Russian origin and a steady supply of parts would be the least New Delhi expects.

    It was the tremendous success of Indian Air Force MiG-21s against the PAF’s latest American-built F-104 Starfighter that led to a huge order for the MiG-21 from the Iraqi Air Force. Unlike other customers, India has used Russian weapons with devastating effect in a number of conflicts. So it is clearly in Russia’s interests to see India wage war successfully. There is no better marketing for weapons than a real war.

    If Russia throws its military helmet into the ring, India would welcome such direct support. However, if it merely keeps the weapons and spares highway open, it would serve India’s purpose too.

    https://in.rbth.com/blogs/stranger_than_fiction/2016/09/29/war-support-what-india-can-expect-from-russia_634265

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    In fact: Why a special relationship with Russia matters

    Post  Pinto on Mon Oct 03, 2016 10:58 am

    Vladimir Putin(L), Narendra Modi (File Photo)

    After India’s surgical strikes along the LoC, Moscow expressed concern “with aggravation of situation along the line of control” and called on “parties not to allow any escalation of tension”. This stood in sharp contrast to Russia’s reaction to the 2008 terror strikes, where it supported “resolute actions of the Indian government to cut short terrorist actions”. The statements capture the changing nature of India-Russia ties, also reflected in Moscow’s military relationship with Pakistan.

    Back in 1967, following the Tashkent Agreement, Moscow had decided to sell military armaments to Pakistan. But Indira Gandhi objected, and the USSR, considering its special relationship with India, withdrew the proposal. The understanding continued into the 21st century — President Vladimir Putin said in Delhi in March 2010 that “unlike many other countries, Russia does not have any military cooperation with Pakistan because we bear in mind the concerns of our Indian friends”.

    But by August 2015, the situation had changed, with Pakistan signing a deal with Russia for four Mi-35M attack helicopters. The Pakistani army, navy, and air force chiefs have all visited Russia in the past 15 months. The countries are conducting a 2-week-long military exercise in Pakistan, the first in their history. Reports that Moscow had decided to cancel the exercises following the Uri terror turned out to be incorrect. News about the ongoing exercise has been scarce, with no mention of the location of the joint military drill.

    New Delhi believes that Russia’s relationship with Pakistan would not come at the cost of Moscow’s dealings with India. But what complicates matters is the excessive Indian dependence on Moscow for the upkeep of military hardware and transfer of high-end military technologies. Experts estimate that nearly 65% of the current inventory in the three Services is of Soviet or Russian origin. The serviceability state of some of these platforms has been abysmally low because of the poor availability of spares from Russia.

    Take the case of the Sukhoi Su-30 MKIs, the mainstay of the IAF, which will have 272 Russian fighters in service by the turn of the decade. The serviceability of Sukhoi aircraft was around 46% 2 years ago, and has crossed 50% this year with great difficulty. This means that half the IAF’s Sukhoi fleet is grounded at any given time. Despite intervention at high levels, South Block has not been able to find a way to secure a regular supply of spares in India. Attempts to encourage Indian companies to manufacture spares have failed because of strict Russian conditions.

    The situation with the MiG-29K naval fighters is no different. In July, the CAG pointed out that the serviceability of the Navy’s warplanes ranged from 21.30% to 47.14% — not even half the fighters were fit to fly. These 2 MiG-29K squadrons were part of Moscow’s package to transfer the aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov, now INS Vikramaditya, India’s sole aircraft carrier.

    India’s only nuclear submarine, INS Chakra, is leased from Russia, while negotiations for leasing another Akula class nuclear submarine are in the final stages. No country other than Russia would have provided India with such critical technology.

    India is now in the process of building its own nuclear submarines, and reports suggest a reasonable degree of Russian cooperation on the project. Informed sources, however, say the second and third n-submarines are 70% and nearly 90% indigenous respectively. But even as India increases its indigenous defence production capacity and diversifies its procurement sources, the military’s dependence on Russia for some critical technologies still remains.

    Many government officials assert that the geostrategic moves by Moscow — whether of joint drills with Pakistan or naval exercises with China in the South China Sea — will not alter the transactional nature of its defence relationship with New Delhi. Pakistan will never be able to match India’s deep pockets to buy Russian defence equipment, and for that reason alone, Moscow will continue to court India.

    Meanwhile, besides buying military equipment from Washington, India has also entered into defence technology cooperation agreements with the US. Even then, the high bar for defence technology transfers means India will not get the cutting edge defence technology from Washington as it did from Moscow. Even in the best case scenario, it can be said that the “special” component of the India-Russia defence partnership is past its halcyon days


    http://indianexpress.com/article/ex...ial-relationship-with-russia-matters-3062079/

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    Russia backs India’s surgical strikes, says Uri ‘terrorists’ from Pakistan

    Post  Pinto on Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:44 pm

    Russia on Monday came out in support of India’s “surgical strikes” along the line of control (LoC), saying every country has the right to defend itself, the first P-5 country to back New Delhi openly.

    “Greatest human rights violations take place when terrorists attack military installations and attack peaceful civilians in India. We welcome the surgical strike. Every country has right to defend itself,” Russian ambassador to India Alexander M Kadakin said.

    Russia was the only country to say in plain words that terrorists came from Pakistan, Kadakin said, asking Islamabad to put an end to cross-border terror.

    The Russian ambassador made the comments in an interview to CNN News 18.

    Indian soldiers in an early morning raid on September 29 had struck militants who were planning to infiltrate into India from Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir.

    The lightning strikes were in response to an attack on an army base in Uri in northern Kashmir that left 19 soldiers dead.

    The other four permanent members of the UN security council – the US, the UK, China and France -- have chosen not to mention the surgical strikes, which Pakistan says was nothing but cross-border firing.

    Russia is the first major world power to use the term “surgical strike”.

    In the neighbourhood, Afghanistan and Bangladesh, too, have backed India and were the first to join Delhi in opting out of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperationsummit that Pakistan was to host in November.

    Kadakin also tried to allay Indian concerns over the Russia-Pakistan military exercise, the first war games between the two countries. He said the exercise didn’t take place in “Pakistan-Occupied Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir”.

    “India should not be concerned about military exercises between Russia and Pakistan because the theme of the exercise is anti-terror fighting”, he said.

    The exercise was in India’s interest as “we teach Pakistani army not to use itself for terror attacks against India”, the envoy said.

    “And the exercise was not held in any sensitive or problematic territories like Pakistan-occupied Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir”, the Russian diplomat said.

    http://www.hindustantimes.com/india...me-from-pak/story-d9MHHxIbVNI7eISMkbAfgP.html

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    Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, Indian Counterpart Discuss Putin-Modi Talks

    Post  Pinto on Sat Oct 08, 2016 8:24 am

    https://sputniknews.com/politics/20161008/1046129665/russia-india-talks.html

    The Russian Foreign Ministry said that the Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister and the Indian Foreign Secretary had discussed bilateral ties and the upcoming meeting between the Russian president and the Indian prime minister.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Titov and Indian Foreign Secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar discussed bilateral ties and the upcoming meeting between the Russian president and the Indian prime minister, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a press release on Saturday.

    "On October 7, in New Delhi, a round of consultations between Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Titov and Indian Foreign Secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar took place. A wide range of issues in Russian-Indian strategic partnership was discussed with an emphasis on the preparations for the upcoming contacts between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi under the framework of the bilateral summit on October 15 in Goa," the press release read.

    The two diplomats reportedly welcomed the positive dynamics in key joint projects in various fields and reiterated mutual intention to further expand mutually beneficial multifaceted cooperation, strengthening the legal base of relations.

    Russia and India also reaffirmed their commitment to building a just and democratic multi-polar world order based on the rule of international law and cooperation under the framework of the United Nations, G20, BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

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    Modi looks to pacify Putin; expedites multi-billion dollar defence deals after Russia’s growing bonhomie with Pakistan

    Post  Pinto on Sat Oct 08, 2016 2:21 pm

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    At a time when there is talk of Russia losing importance as India’s major defence supplier, and when Pakistan is eyeing armaments purchase from India’s old friend, PM Narendra Modi is all set to rebuild the defence relationship with its old ally. Seeking to strengthen ties with Russia amidst mounting tensions with Pakistan and to an extent even China, India is all set to expedite major multi-billion dollar defence deals.

    According to an article in “Russia & India Report”, the Narendra Modi government is looking to sign several key deals during Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit on the sidelines of the BRICS Summit next week.

    The deals, if signed, would come at an opportune time, for not only would they seek to ‘pacify’ Russia after India’s growing closeness with US, but would also send a strong message to Pakistan and China on the country’s defence preparedness. According to the report, hectic negotiations are on between the two countries to make sure that some substantial defence deals can be signed during the bilateral meeting between PM Modi and Putin in Goa next weekend. Some of the most important deals currently under discussion are purchase of 5 S-400 ‘Triumf’ long-range air defence missile systems, Kamov-28 helicopters and upgradation of the Sukhoi 30-MKIs. Two other projects that may get an impetus are the joint production of Kamov-226 light choppers and the long pending joint development of the fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA).

    Watch file video: S-400 Triumf Hits Moving Targets in Dark

    https://youtu.be/B2T6iMy3z3s

    The S-400 deal, if it comes through, would be one of the biggest defence deals with Russia in recent years and will add a formidable punch to India’s strike capabilities. The nod to purchase the S-400 missile systems, was given by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar-led Defence Acquisitions Council (DAC) last year. The Rs 40,000-crore deal will make India the second international buyer of the S-400 system after China. The S-400 missile system is widely said to be Russia’s answer to the F-35 fighter jet of US and has even rattled NATO countries. The S-400 Triumf air defence missile systems is capable of destroying missiles, drones and incoming hostile aircraft within a range of up to 400 km. The system can knock down flying targets including those equipped with stealth technologies. Various reports suggest that India plans is to deploy three S-400 missile systems in the west (read Pakistan) and two in the east read China).
    Also read: Pakistan dismisses US as a ‘declining power’; cosies up to Russia and China

    According to “Russia & India Report”, the discussions to jointly develop the FGFA were suspended over differences on the percentage of work-share in the research and development content. But the prospective $6 billion deal is back on the negotiation table ahead of the Summit.

    The final deal may entail Russia making over 100 fighters in India. As far as the Kamov-226 choppers go, a deal was signed in December last year during PM Modi’s Russia visit, but progress on that front is required to push the contract forward.
    On the Indian Navy front, two deals are in the works. Presently India has only one nuclear attack submarine, INS Chakra, and there are plans to lease an Akula-class submarine for about $1.5 billion from Russia. Additionally, in September during a two day meet of the JWG of the Military-Technical Cooperation, a proposal was submitted by Russia for supply India four multi-purpose frigates, that are equipped with weapons and sensors, including the BrahMos missile, says “Russia & India Report”. The proposal suggests that two of the frigates will be delivered by Russia to India, while the other two will be built in India.


    http://www.financialexpress.com/ind...-putin-brics-summit-us-pakistan-china/409753/

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    Defence, trade on table when PM Modi, Putin meet on Saturday

    Post  Pinto on Tue Oct 11, 2016 1:26 pm

    NEW DELHI: Cooperation in key areas of security, defence and trade will be discussed when Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putinhold talks on Saturday after which the two sides are expected to conclude "important bilateral agreements".

    Announcing Putin's four-day visit to Goa from October 14 to 17, external affairs ministry said besides attending BRICS Summit on Sunday, he would also hold 17th Indo-Russia Annual Summit where the leaders will review the entire gamut of bilateral ties including the progress made since their last Summit meeting in Moscow in December 2015.

    "Important bilateral agreements are expected to be concluded and a joint statement released at the end of the Summit," the ministry said.

    It also comes at a time when India is undertaking large-scale defence modernisation programme involving replacing old Russian equipment with modern ones from the country itself and from other nations.

    Besides discussions to boost cooperation in crucial areas of defence, security and trade, the two leaders will exchange views on regional and international issues.

    Some of the most important defence deals currently under discussion are purchase of 5 S-400 'Triumf' long-range air defence missile systems, Kamov-28 helicopters and upgradation of the Sukhoi 30-MKIs.

    Another project under focus would be the long pending joint development of the fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA)

    India is also looking at leasing an Akula-class nuclear submarine from Russia.

    The ministry said given that the year 2017 marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, a number of commemorative celebrations are planned.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...tin-meet-on-Saturday/articleshow/54795380.cms


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    Modi, Putin to review Indo-Russia relations

    Post  Pinto on Thu Oct 13, 2016 6:28 am

    NEW DELHI: In the backdrop of Russia holding an unprecedented joint military drill with Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet President Vladimir Putin to take stock of Indo-Russian bilateral ties ahead of the BRICS Summit.

    President Putin will reach Goa on October 14th where he will participate in the 17th India-Russia Annual Summit with Prime Minister Modi.


    These are interesting times, with Russia recalibrating its strategic relations with the two nuclear armed neighbours in the Indian subcontinent. The rebalancing has followed New Delhi’s growing proximity with Washington to diversify its weapons and military suppliers. In such times the former Cold War rivals - Russia and Pakistan - held the wargames very aptly codenamed “Friendship-2016”. For India the only saving grace was that the exercise did not take place in the Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir as planned. Later on Moscow did condemned the Uri Attack on an Army Cantonment and exhorted Islamabad to do more to contain terrorism emanating from its territory.


    “At the bilateral Summit in Goa on 15 October 2016, the leaders are expected to review the entire gamut of India-Russia bilateral relations and review the progress made since the last summit held in Moscow in December 2015,” a Ministry of External Affairs’ statement said. Despite India looking at arm suppliers from other countries many deals with its arch-patron Russia are also on the negotiation table. Some of the most important defence deals are purchase of 5 S-400 ‘Triumf’ long-range air defence missile systems, Kamov-28 helicopters and upgradation of the Sukhoi 30-MKIs. Another project under focus would be the long pending joint development of the fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA).


    India is also keen to lease another Akula-class nuclear submarine from Russia.


    The two leaders are expected to discuss the current situation in the Middle East, as India is likely to propose a BRICS fund for the reconstruction of war-ravaged Syria at the BRICS Summit in Goa to be held on October 15-16. The proposal is significant as Russia has been playing an active role in the conflict by fighting on the side of the Syrian President Bashar-al Assad and Indian position has also been perched in favour of the incumbent Syrian establishment as it has been advocating against foreign intervention in the country.

    Other BRICS member countries do not have immediate stake in the Syrian conflict and; India and Russia would want to coordinate with each other on this. It was in August that India in a major outreach to the conflict-ridden country, sent Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar to meet President Assad.The “objective” position of India was not lost on President Assad, who asked New Delhi to play a greater role in the reconstruction of the war-torn country.

    http://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2016/oct/11/modi-putin-to-review-indo-russia-relations-1527014.html?pm=home

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    India is Russia’s privileged strategic partner: Vladimir Putin

    Post  Pinto on Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:26 am

    President Vladimir Putin has said Russia remains one of India’s leading suppliers of advanced weapons and defence technology as ‘India is Russia’s especially privileged strategic partner’.

    “Our countries actively collaborate in the military technical field. Russia remains in the lead in terms of both direct supplies of most advanced weapons and military equipment and conducting joint researches with India, as well as producing goods for military purposes,” Putin told IANS/Sputnik in an exclusive interview ahead of his visit to India for the five-nations BRICS Summit in Goa this weekend.

    “The construction of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile and the development of a new, fifth generation fighter aircraft are mong the successful joint projects,” Putin said.


    He said many of the Russian projects in India not only have commercial importance but also play a significant social and economic role for the economies of the two countries.

    Putin said such projects “harmoniously fit in the new Indian industrialisation programme”, a reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Make in India” initiative.


    “Russian companies see real prospects and high attractiveness of the Indian market,” Putin said.

    http://indianexpress.com/article/in...ged-strategic-partner-vladimir-putin-3080433/


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    India looks to end exclusive defence deals

    Post  Pinto on Thu Oct 13, 2016 12:00 pm

    NEW DELHI: India is working on a new strategy for manufacturing defence products that envisions reducing exclusive dependence on any of its key partners including Russia, the United States, France and Israel while procuring the technical know-how, a measure that will give impetus to the Narendra Modi government’s Make in India programme. This is part of a comprehensive two-pronged vision for the country’s defence sector over the next 15 years that the government’s premier think tank NITI Aayog is working on, a senior government official told ET.

    “On the one hand India will push for change in collaboration strategy with our key defence suppliers so that nothing remains exclusive to one partner and India gets the know-how,” the official said on condition of anonymity.

    “On the other hand we will be working towards strengthening our own defence research and development system to match the international standards,” he said.

    The 15-year vision document, which has replaced the Five-Year Plans of the Nehruvian era, will for the first time outline the roadmap for country’s defence sector as well as internal security, two strategic sectors which were out of the purview of the Five-Year Plans. Russia remains the largest supplier of military equipment to India, followed by the US, France and Israel a distant fourth.

    As per the defence ministry, India signed defence deals worth over $5 billion with Russia in the past three years and the US came a close second with deals of about $4.4 billion. Between 2012-13 and 2014-15, India entered into 162 arms contracts, of which 67 were with other countries including Russia (18), the US (13) and France (six).

    ET VIEW:

    Focus on export orientation: Export orientation would be the key. Non-exclusive segments for our defence partners make ample sense as it would boost competitiveness among the vendors, and we would be in a position to choose the most suitable JV partners. However, the military-industrial complex planned surely needs to be export-oriented and globally competitive. Otherwise, there’s the real danger that the Make in India policy for defence hardware and equipment would lead to high costs, indifferent standards and huge attendant shortcomings of domestic focus akin to the days of pre-reform and autarky.


    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/defence/india-looks-to-end-exclusive-defence-deals/articleshow/54819977.cms

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