Tuesday, January 18, 2022



10 bilateral agreements, show of camaraderie to take centrestage during Putin’s visit to Delhi

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New Delhi, Dec 4, 2021- Documents for as many as 10 bilateral agreements are being prepared which will be signed between India and Russia during Vladimir Putin’s flying visit to India scheduled for Monday.

Revealing some details of the Russian President’s one-day trip to New Delhi to attend the 21st India-Russia Annual Summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his top aide Yuri Ushakov said on Friday that the talks between the two leaders would be held without the unnecessary “protocol jumbles”.

“When preparing it, we took into account all the difficulties with the coronavirus situation, so it will be a purely working format, without unnecessary protocol clutter,” Russian media quoted Ushakov as saying.

The working visit will see Putin heading straight for talks with PM Modi immediately after his arrival in New Delhi on Monday afternoon.

The presidential aide said that, post delegation-level meeting, no specific limits have been planned for the Putin-Modi talks. He stressed that the both leaders have in the past, while communicating face-to-face, discussed “the most difficult, most delicate issues of the international situation” which could happen once again during an informal one-on-one dinner.

“The president and the prime minister will talk as much as they want. And then the departure, regardless of whether it’s late evening or night time,” Ushakov said.

This will be Putin’s only second trip abroad since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. He had travelled to Geneva in June for a Summit with the US President Joe Biden.

The Russian delegation for the New Delhi summit has also been downsized with only Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu, Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov, Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin and Ushakov accompanying Putin.

There will be a series of meetings which will be held on Monday before the Russian President’s arrival.

According to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the day will start with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and his Russian counterpart Sergey Shoygu co-chairing the Intergovernmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation.

Just about the same time, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will also be holding their bilateral meeting.

The meetings will be followed by the inaugural meeting of the newly instituted 2+2 dialogue mechanism at the level of the foreign and defence ministers.

“Both ministers are expected to discuss bilateral, regional and international political and defence issues within this format, as you know, we have with very few countries,” said MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.

In the afternoon, the 21st India-Russia Annual Summit will be held where PM Modi and Putin will review the state and prospects of bilateral relations and discuss ways to further strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries.

Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov is also expected to take part in a meeting of the intergovernmental commission on trade, economic, scientific, technical and cultural cooperation.

Ushakov said on Friday that “about 10” bilateral agreements, including in the field of energy, space, culture, are planned to be signed at the end of the Russia-India summit.

“Preparations are underway, we are confident that the package of agreements in the context of the visit will be drawn up,” he said.

The top aide to the Russian President also highlighted that, in spite of the Covid-19 pandemic, the trade turnover between the two countries is recovering at a good pace.

“In January-September, it increased by more than 38%, amounting to $ 8.8 billion. Not a bad figure,” he said.

As reported by IndiaNarrative.com, the growing Modi-Putin camaraderie, and the increasing multifaceted bilateral cooperation, is highlighted by the fact that the two leaders have met each other 19 times since 2014.

After their last meeting at the BRICS Summit in Brasilia in November 2019, Modi and Putin have also had six telephonic conversations during the Covid-19 pandemic and several virtual interactions on various multilateral platforms.

Last week, Putin said that during his forthcoming talks with PM Modi, he will be outlining new large-scale initiatives for the further development of the especially privileged Russian-Indian relationship, the Russian-Indian strategic partnership.

He said that this partnership brings real mutual benefit to both states as bilateral trade shows good dynamics; ties are actively developing in the energy sector, innovation, space, and the production of coronavirus vaccines and medicines.

The Russian President also mentioned the extensive cooperation in the defence sector, including through the creation of joint ventures.

“India is one of the authoritative centres of the multipolar world with a foreign policy philosophy and priorities that are closely aligned with our own. I am convinced that, relying on strong traditions of friendship and mutual understanding, we will continue working together to expand the full range of Russian-Indian ties,” said Putin at a ceremony to received newly arrived foreign ambassadors in Moscow, including India’s Ambassador Pavan Kapoor. (Agency)

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