President Vladimir Putin will arrive in New Delhi on Monday (November 6) for the 21st India-Russia Annual Summit. He will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the first time since their meeting on the sidelines of the BRICS summit in November 2019.
During the summit, Modi and Putin will review bilateral relations between India and Russia and will discuss ways to further strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries.
India and Russia will sign more than 10 bilateral agreements in areas such as military-technical cooperation, shipping, space, and science and technology.
Days ahead of the summit, the Centre approved the manufacture of Russian AK-203 rifles at a factory in Uttar Pradesh under the joint venture Indo-Russian Rifles Private Limited.
There will also be focus on delivery of the S-400 missile defence systems and other defence agreements. India had signed a $5.43 billion contract with Russia for the purchase of five S-400 surface to air missile systems during the 19th India-Russia Annual Bilateral Summit in New Delhi in October 2019. A similar purchase by NATO ally Turkey prompted the US to ban Ankara from its advanced F-35 fighter jet programme.
Modi and Putin will also discuss the COVID-19 situation and cooperation in fighting the pandemic.
The two sides will review regional security concerns including Afghanistan, and the fallout of the Taliban takeover of Kabul. India has time and again expressed its concern over the use of Afghan soil for terrorism by Pakistan-backed elements.
Simultaneously, India and Russia will hold a 2+2 format dialogue that will see a meeting between the foreign and defence ministers of both countries. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu will represent Russia in the dialogue.
Russian Ambassador Nikolay Kudeshev said Putin’s visit would result in pragmatic economic outcomes, and will provide impetus to the bilateral relationship. The envoy said there will also be a “formidable joint political document” after the summit.