Islamabad: The National Command Authority(NCA) in Pakistan has re-emphasised the country’s desire for establishing the…
AFP, Benaulim: Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are set to seal energy and
defence deals Saturday that officials say are signs of a deepening partnership between the nations.
Putin will hold talks with Modi after arriving in the Indian tourism state of Goa for a BRICS summit also involving the heads of leading emerging nations Brazil, China and South Africa.
Among the agreements expected to be signed between the two leaders are Moscow’s delivery of its most advanced anti-aircraft defence system to India.
India, the world’s top defence importer, is undergoing a $100-billion upgrade of its Soviet-era military hardware, as it looks to protect its borders from arch-rival Pakistan and an increasingly assertive China.
Modi and Putin will also focus on strengthening energy ties to meet India’s growing thirst for fuel and electricity for its fast-growing economy.
Russia’s biggest oil company Rosneft is expected to acquire India’s Essar Oil in a multi-billion-dollar deal, according to local media reports, quoting officials involved in the agreement.
“The menu is vast,” India’s ambassador to Russia, Pankaj Saran said at a briefing on the talks, without detailing the deals to be signed.
“It is more than a relationship, it is a partnership and very justifiably it has been described by the two leaders as both special and privileged, as well as of course strategic,” he said.
“It is very deep and very intense and it is poised to grow even further.”
Saran said he also expected them to discuss India’s tensions with neighbour Pakistan, which spiked after last month’s attack on an Indian army base that killed 19 soldiers.Modi has sought to isolate Pakistan internationally since the attack that India blamed on Pakistan-based militants.
India said it subsequently carried out strikes against militants over the border in Pakistan, prompting a furious response from Islamabad.