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S-400: Booster Shot For Forces, Strategic Autonomy And All That India Stands to Gain From Russian Deal

Russia is India’s biggest defence supplier. Most of India’s best military assets are from Russia, including Brahmos missile, MiG, Sukhoi fighter jets, Vikramaditya aircraft carrier and the INS Chakra nuclear submarine, among others.

Aishwarya Kumar | News18.com@aishwaryak03

Updated:October 5, 2018, 2:02 PM IST
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New Delhi: Russian President Vladimir Putin was embraced in a warm hug by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the former arrived in New Delhi on Thursday evening. The meeting, that comes months after Modi visited Sochi for an informal summit with Putin, is significant as it looks to redefine bilateral ties between the two nations.

Putin’s top foreign policy aide confirmed that the two countries will be signing the S-400 Triumf air defence deal. The deal, which is over $5 billion, hit a rough patch as the United States of America under the Donald Trump administration earlier this year said that the major defence purchase by India from Russia would attract sanctions under the Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanction Act (CAATSA), which was signed into law by Trump in August 2017 and came into effect in January this year.

Russia is India’s biggest defence supplier. Most of India’s best military assets are from Russia, including Brahmos missile, MiG, Sukhoi fighter jets, Vikramaditya aircraft carrier and the INS Chakra nuclear submarine, among others.

S-400

The S-400 is known to be the world’s most lethal long-range surface-to-air missile system. It can be deployed within five minutes, and is capable of firing three types of missiles to create a layered defence. In October 2015, the Defence Acquisition Council considered buying 12 units, but it was subsequently determined that five would be adequate for India’s needs.

China was the first foreign buyer to seal a government-to-government deal with Russia in 2014 to procure the lethal missile system and Moscow has already started delivery of an undisclosed number of the S-400 missile systems to Beijing.

The S-400 is an upgraded version of the S-300 systems. The missile system, manufactured by Almaz-Antey, has been in service in Russia since 2007.

It has the ability to trace 100 targets that are air borne and has been put into use by Russia to defend its military assets in Syria. Other than Indian interests, earlier this year, Iraq confirmed that it was interested in buying the high-tech missiles. Qatar, too, has been reported as having shown interest in the S-400s.

‘Booster Shot’

The S-400 can play a crucial role in case of a two-front war. In October 2015, the Defence Acquisition Council considered buying 12 units, but it was subsequently determined that five would be adequate for India’s needs.

Autonomy

The US has been punishing countries doing significant deals with Iran or Russia with "strategic autonomy". Going ahead with the deal, will also send out a message about India's 'strategic autonomy'.

In the words of Air Force Chief BS Dhanoa, S-400 would be like a "booster shot" in the Indian Air Force's arm.


(Get detailed and live results of each and every seat of the state Assemblies in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram to know which candidate/party is leading or trailing and to know who has won and who has lost and by what margin. Our one-of-its-kind Election Analytics Centre lets you put on the psephologist's hat. Know interesting facts and trivia about the elections. Elections = News18)
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