Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday inked a total of 16 agreements mostly in the fields of defence, energy, power, shipbuilding and space. Both PM Modi and President Putin also inaugurated units 3 and 4 of the Kudankulam nuclear plant.
In his speech, PM Modi, calling Russia an ‘old friend of India’, said: “We agreed to work on an annual military industrial conference that will allow stakeholders on both sides to institute and push collaboration.”
PM Modi also thanked the Russian President for supporting India in condemning cross-border error. “We deeply appreciate Russia’s understanding and support of our actions to fight cross-border terrorism that threatens our entire region. President Putin and I noted the similarity of our views on the situation in Afghanistan and turmoil in West Asia,” Modi said.
Modi added, “I am aware of your deep affection for India. Your personal attention has been a source of strength in our relationship.”
Speaking about India’s and Russia’s old friendship, the Prime Minister said:”We’re celebrating and building on our past achievements. Our close friendship has been source of strength. It is a driver of peace & factor of stability.”
Praising Putin’s role in global platform, Modi said: “In a complex and changing global context, your leadership has provided stability and substance to our strategic partnership. Our close collaboration at UN, BRICS, East Asia Summit, G20, SCO makes our partnership truly global, both in its scope and coverage.”
Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar, in a media briefing after the bilateral talk, said India and Russia strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.
“We saw Russia more as a friend than as a partner. The sense of the meeting was that the relationship has recorded very substantial progress. Both leaders also noted that the high-level exchanges were essential in taking the relationship forward. A lot of the discussions were focussed on military-technical cooperation; the S400 systems. New proposals were agreed upon on the industrial conference and developments on the nuclear energy side were also discussed,” Jaishankar said.
“PM Modi particularly expressed appreciation on the support Russia extended India over the NSG issue. The joint statement underlines the long-standing mutual trust between India and Russia; reaffirms the strategic partnership; reviews the progress of economic, commercial, civil nuclear issues and transport corridor. India and Russia ties have been strong and a time-tested relationship,” he added.
“On the specific issue of terrorism, the leaders emphasised the necessity of comprehensive international involvement and legal regime. The two leaders strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestation,” the Foreign Secratary said.