India, Russia sign 16 pacts including N-plants

India, Russia sign 16 pacts including N-plants
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Story Dated : December 25, 2015

Moscow: India and Russia on Thursday have signed 16 pacts, including on joint manufacture of 200 Kamov 226 military helicopters and construction of 12 atomic plants with involvement of local companies in India.

After extensive talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Narendra Modi underlined the need for the world to unite against terrorism “without distinction and discrimination between terrorist groups and target countries”, an apparent reference to sources of the menace like Pakistan.

Putin conveyed Russia’s “strong support” to India’s bid for permanent membership of the UN Security Council, saying it is a “deserving and strong candidate that can bring an independent and responsible approach” within the world body.

The discussions covered a wide range of issues including terrorism, cooperation in the fields of defence, security and energy and ways to enhance trade and investment besides facilitating easier movement of people.

After the talks, the two sides signed 16 agreements. One of these was an agreement on manufacture of Kamov 226 helicopter in India, which, the Prime Minister, said is the first project for a major defence platform under ‘Make-in-India’ program.

With regard to nuclear energy, Modi said the pace of cooperation is increasing and progress is being made on 12 Russian reactors at two sites in India.

Putin said Unit-II of Kudankulam atomic plant in Tamil Nadu, being built by Russia, will be commissioned within weeks and negotiations are at an advanced staged for Unit III and IV.

In the atomic field, the two sides signed a significant agreement for “Localization of Manufacturing in India for Russian-Designed Nuclear Reactor Units” to enable participation of Indian firms under the ‘Make-in-India’ program.

“The sides welcomed progress in identifying the second site in India for additional six nuclear reactor units to be set up in cooperation with Russia,” said the Joint Statement titled ‘Shared Trust, New Horizons’.

In the joint press statement with Putin, Modi said, “The pace of our cooperation in nuclear energy is increasing. We are making progress on our plans for 12 Russian nuclear reactors at two sites.

With regard to the defence cooperation, the Prime Minister said the Inter-Governmental Agreement on manufacture of Kamov 226 helicopter in India is the first project for a major defence platform under the ‘Make-in-India’ mission. “It is rightly with our most important defence partner,” he added.