Monday, October 12, 2009

Antony to seal Gorshkov deal during Russia visit

New Delhi, October 11
Playing its military-diplomacy cards correctly, India has yet again showed that it was “comfortable” with both, the USA and Russia. The Defence Minister AK Antony leaves for Russia on October 13 to ink the pending deal for the aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov and also finalise the extension of the existing military cooperation agreement between the two countries.

On the other hand, Indian Army and the Indian Air Force will stage separate exercises with their US counterparts within this month. The exercise between Indian Army and the US Army starts on October 12 and is the biggest ever between the two countries. It will have participation of armoured elements of both sides. The IAF exercise will be to fine-tune the carrying capacities of the transport planes.
Meanwhile, sources in the defence ministry said, “Both countries will seal the deal for Admiral Gorshkov during Antony’s visit to Russia.” Apart from signing the deal, the two countries will discuss projects like development of fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA), T-90 tanks and issues relating to supersonic BrahMos missiles.
Crucially, Antony will also lay the foundation for extending the existing inter-governmental commission beyond 2010. The deal for extension will be formally signed by the Prime Minister’s of the two countries when Manmohan Singh visits Russia at the end of this year. However, Antony and his Russian counterpart AE Serdyukov will tie up the looses ends.
India and Russia had concluded an agreement in December 1988, which envisaged a programme for defence cooperation between the two countries up to the year 2010.
Modernisation of the Sukhoi-30 MK1 aircraft is also expected to come up for discussion. The aircraft, contracted in 1996, are due for overhaul shortly.

1 comment:

  1. We are placing one foot on one boat and the other foot on the other boat. Why can't we have one consistent policy. The ruskis have always supported us, while uncle john imposed those damn sanctions when we decided to make buddha smile again with Pokhran in '98. The americans want to have a chunk of our defence budget, and we are falling prey.