Well yes the C-17 deal is the most quickest deal i have seen in past 2 decades that India made , thats becuase there was some quid-pro-quo involved between India and US , where US supported India with NSG clearance in 123 deal and in return India promised it would buy arms from US.
Even Condi Rice has mentioned of such a quid-pro-quo arrangement in here newest book.
You make it sound like it is not corruption...
The complain is not about cheap carrier but the fact that Russia went back on the original deal and renegotiated it , most indians feel let down there. Although there were technical reason beyond Russia and India control but many feel it should have been done earlier.
Both sides made an agreement based on what they believed was the situation with the ship.
Once the ship was opened however it became clear that reality was something completely different.
Now the Russians could simply have ignored the state of the piping and cabling and completed on time and given you what you were paying for.
You can stick to paying 1.6 billion for a dog of a ship that will have endless problems till you strip it right back and do it right from the start.
The complaint then would be the ship is a dog, to which your friends... the Russians will say you got exactly what you paid for.
Having the ship sit from 1997 till 2004 without any assurance of a sale probably led to serious degradation of the ship... with no assurances till it was signed that India even wanted it would mean little or no money could be justified for maintaining what could well just be scrap for China.
If you spend a couple of days negotiating me painting your house and when we finally agree on the price and I start work stripping back the old paint and find dry rot and termites, will you be happy with me just painting over with a nice fresh coat of paint or two because you agreed to pay for the paint but not to replace rotten wood or insect infestation? ...in 2 years the house is falling down... but it was cheap.
At the end of the day both sides underestimated the costs and it ended up costing more and taking longer than expected initially, but as I have said... if it really was important then you could have simply pushed it through like the useless purchase of C-17s at ridiculous prices as a reward for some political favour.
Russia could have easily charged $5 billion in original deal for carrier and aircraft and we wouldnt have complained , infact they should have done that considering we are spending $500 million for C-17 and $40 million for M2K upgrade.
Which clearly shows the extra cost is not the problem... they tried to offer you a give away price, but after finding it would cost more than both sides had anticipated they asked for more money to cover their costs so they weren't out of pocket with the deal.
Instead of thanking them you complain that they should have gouged you with the price in the first place...
If they demanded 5 billion in the first place it would be in China being rebuilt as a new carrier and whomever India finally decided to build them a brand new carrier will be giving excuses about why it has taken so long and is over price and now you will start your 20 year program to decide what fighter you will put on board.
The Indian Navy cheif is on record stating that he will willing to get a blank cheque to any one who can buy a Carrier at less the cost of what Russia has offered.
Exactly... you are getting it as cheaply as possible, and your complaint is not that it is too expensive, but that they changed the price.
[I think Russia should just change its tactics ask for similar to western price but slightly less but deliver on time and quality will keep both sides happy , Russia gets substantially more money and india gets quality goods on time.
Russia is going for high tech and state of the art, so prices will not remain so low. The question about delivery time... apart from this one deal and of course the Nerpa... both of which were for reasons beyond Russias control, can you tell us about other programs that are delayed by those tardy Russians?
Lets just say that in 2001 the UK decided to go with STOVL F-35s for their new carriers... in 2010 they changed their mind and are ordering the cheaper CATOBAR model and they expect their first carrier in.... 2016... the two carriers will cost about 6 billion pounds but that doesn't include their air wing and they wont have a full air wing for a decade after they enter service!
Talk about problems...
India doesn't have a huge number of contracts with the US but I understand a few American radars India operates don't work because of support problems...