NEW DELHI: Russian President Vladimir Putin will be in New Delhi for the 19th Indo-Russian summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 4-5.
The last summit was held in St Petersburg in 2017. Modi and Putin had met for an informal summit at Sochi in May. Days ahead of the meeting, the Cabinet Committee on Security cleared the purchase of the S-400 Triumf air defence system from Russia, despite the threat of US sanctions. The inking of the $5.43 billion (approx `40,000 crore) deal is likely to be the highlight of the summit.
The IAF is expected to receive first S-400 squadron within 24 months after the contract’s signing, while the rest will be delivered within next four-five years. On September 21, the US State Department announced economic sanctions on the Equipment Development Department of the Chinese Ministry of Defence and its top administrator, for its recent purchase of Russian Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets and S-400 surface-to-air missiles. India, however, says it is still in talks with the US over a possible waiver. Officials, however, stressed the decision to go ahead with the purchase was based on Indian strategic interests, which “cannot be compromised.”
But “while defence deals will be high on the agenda, the focus of the discussions is likely to be ways to improve the economic and commercial relationship, and also energy supplies, including nuclear power,” a senior Indian official said.