With Russian President Vladmir Putin headed for India to attend the BRICS Summit in Goa, the S-400 deal as well as the joint venture for Kamov-226T helicopters to be established between defence PSU Hindustan Aeronautics and Russian Rostec State Corporation will be inked over the weekend. The deal for the procurement from Russia of four stealth frigates will also be made.
India and Russia will also finalise the long-awaited agreement for the joint production of around 200 Kamov 226T light utility helicopters at a cost of about $1 billion under the “Make in India” programme.
S-400 systems basically have three kinds of missiles, with different capabilities, that can fly at supersonic and hypersonic speeds to intercept all kinds of targets at ranges from 120 to 400-km. Russian experts proclaim that the S-400 surface-to-air missile (SAM) system can “radar lock and shoot down” stealth fifth-generation fighters like the American F-35 jets.
As for the Kamov helicopters, which will replace the aging and obsolete Cheetah and Chetak fleets of the armed forces, the deal will be signed between defence PSU Hindustan Aeronautics and Russian Rostec State Corporation. HAL and Rostec will form a joint venture to set up the production facilities to execute the deal.
The deal for four Admiral Grigorovich-class (Project 11356) guided-missile stealth frigates will involve the direct supply of two vessels from Russia while another two will be made in India. The shipyard for making these frigates in India will be chosen by a competitive process, sources said.
The 3,620-tonne Admiral Grigorovich-class, which can be fitted with BrahMos missiles, is a derivative of the six Talwar-class frigates that Russia built for the Indian Navy between 2003 and 2013.
Negotiations for other mega defence projects with Russia like the joint development of the futuristic fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) and the $1.5 billion lease of a second nuclear-powered submarine are also on track now.