New Delhi: With Russia to start delivery of S-400 missile systems by next year, Indian Air Force is set to be stronger than ever in the coming few years.
S-400 will be delivered by next year, a news agency reported citing statement by a Russian official.
Russian Deputy Chief of Mission Roman Babushkin early last month said that the delivery of all S-400 air defence missile systems will be completed by 2025. He also informed on the status of orders saying the production of S-400 missiles meant for delivery to India has already started.
The S-400 missile systems are expected to be a matter of discussion on External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar’s visit to Moscow next month for a trilateral summit in which China is also participating.
Indian defence forces have been betting on the S-400 missile system which has a range of 400 kilometres. It can reportedly shoot down up to 80 targets simultaneously with a special ability to strike two missiles at each target. The surface-to-air defence system will enable the air force to attack adversaries’ missiles in advance.
India had signed a deal worth $5 billion with Russia to purchase the ambitious missile system during Russian President Vladimir Putin’s tour to India in 2018. China, which poses a direct threat to India’s border security has already received the second consignment of S-400 from Russia and hence the acquisition is critical for India’s national security.
The missile defence system deal came under the dark clouds of sanctions from the United States which introduced multiple sanctions on Russian firms. The United States introduced Countering American Adversaries through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) to carry out political and economic embargoes on firms and nations involved in business with Russia, Iran and North Korea.
The Act was brought in especially to prevent Russia from securing defence deals from the major defence powers in the world. However, Turkey, a NATO member disobeyed the threats from the Trump’s administration by acquiring the S-400 missile system.