India seals deal with Russia to procure AK-203 rifles in push of military modernisation

India and Russia have also signed an agreement to extend military cooperation for the next decade, informed Russian Army Gen Dmitriy Shugaev, Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation

FP Staff December 06, 2021 16:56:48 IST
India seals deal with Russia to procure AK-203 rifles in push of military modernisation

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh with his Russian counterpart Sergey Shoigu.Twitter@Rajnath Singh

Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's meet with the Russian president Vladimir Putin, India and Russia signed two agreements on Monday morning after the two countries began their first-ever ministerial dialogue. India signed a mega-deal with Russia for the procurement of AK-203 assault rifles.

Indian Express reported, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh met his Russian counterpart Sergey Shoigu and the two sides signed contracts for the manufacture of nearly 6 lakh AK-203 rifles under a joint venture in Amethi, Uttar Pradesh. The deal is worth over Rs 5,000 crore.

India and Russia have also signed an agreement to extend military cooperation for the next decade, informed Russian Army Gen Dmitriy Shugaev, Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation.

He said, "We are very satisfied with our cooperation. Today we signed a document - Program of the Development of the Military Technical Cooperation until 2031. It's very important for us," said Shugaev. "It's a joint venture which will produce rifles AK-203 and for these entire 10 years, we will produce more than 600,000 rifles," he added.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Monday that India and Russia have signed a number of agreements, contracts and protocols covering small arms and military cooperation.

After his meeting with Shoygu, Singh said on Twitter that their meeting was “productive, fruitful and substantial bilateral discussions on defence cooperation” and that “India values its special and privileged strategic partnership with Russia”.

He said in a subsequent tweet, “India deeply appreciates Russia’s strong support for India. We hope that our cooperation will bring peace, prosperity and stability to the entire region.”

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