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Antony snubs Navy Chief over ties with Russia

Antony snubs Navy Chief over ties with Russia

Antony overrules Navy Chief, says no need for review of defence ties with Russia

New Delhi: India's Defence Minister, A K Antony has over-ruled the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Sureesh Mehta saying that there is no need for a review of defence ties with Russia.

Speaking in Pokhran, the Defence Minister said that there was also no need to review the supplies of defence equipment.

His statements come after Admiral Mehta said in an exclusive interview to CNN-IBN some days ago that India will not give in to the Russian demand for a $1.2 billion price hike for the aircraft carrier, Gorshkov.

Admiral Mehta had indicated a hardening of stance against the traditional arms supplier to India.

He also said that that India would instead, extend the life of its own ageing carrier, Viraat.

This is what Admiral Mehta had told CNN-IBN: "I don't think there is any question of taking any advantage because then we can also put our feet down and say 'well it is a government to government contract and get on with it'. To me it should be that there is no escalation at all. Virat is doing quite well and we will be easily be able to run her for at least another seven-eight years."

first published:December 08, 2007, 13:10 IST