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India - Russia Relations


Russia has been a reliable and long-standing partner of India for a long period of time. India's foreign policy has relied heavily on the development of India-Russia relations.

Strategic Partnership

Since the signing of the "Declaration on the India-Russia Strategic Partnership" in October 2000 (during President Putin's visit to India), India-Russia relations have taken on a qualitatively new dimension, with increased cooperation in nearly every area of the bilateral relationship, including politics, security, defence, trade and economy, science and technology, and culture.

Numerous organised discussion channels operate at both the political and official levels of the Strategic Partnership to ensure regular interaction and follow-up on cooperation initiatives.

During the Russian President's December 2010 visit to India, the Strategic Partnership was upgraded to a "Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership."

Political Relations

The Annual Summit Meeting between India's Prime Minister and the President of the Russian Federation is the highest-level structured platform for dialogue in India's strategic alliance with Russia.

Thus far, 20 Annual Summits have alternated between India and Russia.

Mr. Vladimir Putin, visited New Delhi on 6 December 2021 for the 21st India-Russia Annual Summit with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.

There are various high-level interactions between international commissions of both states.

Defence and Security Cooperation

India and Russia have had a long and productive defence relationship.

From a buyer-seller partnership to one based on collaborative research, development, and manufacture of contemporary defence technologies and systems, India and Russia's military technology cooperation has progressed.

Defence Support

This form of historic partnership may be seen in the BrahMos Missile System, as well as the licenced manufacturing of SU-30 aircraft and T-90 tanks in India.

  • In addition, an agreement on cooperation in the fabrication of spare parts for Russian/Soviet military equipment was signed during the 20th Annual Bilateral Summit in Vladivostok in September 2019.

  • During the 17th Annual Summit, the parties reached agreements on the supply of S-400 air defence systems, the construction of frigates under Project 1135.6, and the formation of a joint venture to manufacture Ka-226T helicopters in India.

  • On 3 March 2019 in Amethi, the PM announced the JV – Indo-Russian Rifles Pvt. Ltd. for the production of AK Series Assault Rifles at Ordnance Factory Korwa under the 'Make-in-India' programme.

In addition, the armed services of the two countries hold annual exchanges and training exercises.

Military Exercises

The first-ever Tri-Services exercise –‘INDRA 2017’ took place in Vladivostok from October 19 to 29, 2017.

Indra Navy-2018, a bilateral Russian-Indian naval exercise, took place in the Bay of Bengal from December 13 to 16. From the 10th to the 19th of December 2019, India and Russia participated in the Joint Tri-Services Exercise 'INDRA 2019' at Babina, Pune, and Goa.

Representatives from the Indian Armed Forces and the Russian Federation's Eastern Command took part in the exercises, which aimed to increase field, marine, and flight skills as well as collaboration between Russia and India's armed forces.

On the 25th of June 2019, prominent public and private sector defence companies, including DRDO and OFB, attended the International Military-Technical Forum "Army-2019" in Kubinka, Moscow region.

On the 13th of April 2018, the India-Russia Military Industrial Conference held its third round in Chennai.

Trade And Economic Relations

The leaders on both sides have selected intensifying trade and economic cooperation as a priority area, as evidenced by revised targets of boosting bilateral investment to $50 billion and bilateral trade to $30 billion by 2025.

As a result of the global economic slowdown and Russia's protracted dispute with the West over the Ukraine crisis, Russia has focused on import substitution, resulting in a major decrease in Russia's foreign trade.

This drop-in Russian exports and imports have also had an impact on India.

Nuclear Energy

Russia is a critical ally of India in the domain of peaceful nuclear energy use. It recognises India as a nuclear-weapons-capable country with an unblemished non-proliferation record.

DAE and Russia's Rosatom inked a Strategic Vision in December 2014 to deepen collaboration in peaceful uses of atomic energy.

Nuclear Power Plant

In India, the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP) is being constructed with Russian assistance. Units 1 and 2 of the KKNPP are already operational, while the building of Units 3 and 4 is underway.

Along with the Bangladesh Ministry of Science and Technology and Rosatom, DAE signed a trilateral memorandum of understanding on collaboration in the realisation of the Rooppur nuclear power plant building project in Bangladesh.

The Memorandum of Understanding on an Action Plan for Prioritizing and Implementing Cooperation Areas in the Nuclear Field was signed during the 19th Annual Summit in New Delhi in October.

Space Cooperation

  • Satellite launches, the GLONASS navigation system, remote sensing, and other societal applications are all areas where the two countries interact peacefully.

  • A Memorandum of Understanding on Joint Activities in the Field of Human Spaceflight was signed during the 19th Bilateral Summit between ISRO and ROSCOSMOS.

Dmitry Rogozin, DG ROSCOSMOS, visited India on July 11, 2019, and met with the NSA and ISRO Chairman to discuss bilateral cooperation in the Gaganyaan programme, space system manufacturing in India, and futuristic technologies such as new space systems, rocket engines, propellants and propulsion systems, spacecraft and launch vehicle.

Science & Technology Cooperation

  • The Working Group on Science and Technology, which is part of IRIGC-TEC, the Integrated Long Term Programme (ILTP), and the Basic Science Cooperation Programme are the three primary institutional mechanisms for bilateral Science and Technology cooperation, while the two countries' Science Academies facilitate inter-academy exchanges.

  • A number of new initiatives in this sphere include the India-Russia Bridge to Innovation, cooperation in telemedicine, creation of a Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL), GIAN, and the Russia India Network (RIN) of Universities.

Cultural Cooperation

Around 20 Russian institutions, including prestigious universities and schools, teach Hindi on a regular basis to approximately 1500 Russian students.

  • Apart from Hindi, Russian institutions teach Tamil, Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Urdu, Sanskrit, and Pali.

  • Russians have a tremendous interest in Indian dance, music, yoga, and Ayurveda. Each month, JNCC offers sessions in yoga, dance, music, and Hindi to roughly 500 students.

Namaste Russia

Since 2015, India and Russia have had frequent cultural exchanges in accordance with the reciprocal agreement.

Over 60 Russian artists from three ensembles recently travelled to India for the Festival of Russian Culture. Similarly, beginning in September 2019, four Indian groups will spend four months touring more than ten Russian towns as part of "Namaste Russia."


Russia has been a particularly active partner country for ITEC scholarships, with around 76 Russians benefitting in 2018-19.

The number of ICCR scholarships awarded each year has been gradually increasing.

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