India finalizes S-400 Russian air defense missile system deal
The Indian Government has finalized a deal with Russia for the S-400 Triumf (NATO name: SA-21 Growler) air defense (AD) system, according to Indian media outlets.
S-400 air defense system (Picture source: Vitaly Kuzmin)
The deal envisages the delivery of five S-400 air defense systems worth INR390 billion (USD5.43 billion) to New Delhi. "India is set to ink the [S-400] deal with Russia, in spite of the threat of the US financial sanctions that have been recently imposed against the People`s Republic of China [PRC] for an acquisition of the same AD system," the Times of India newspaper said. Some unspecified sources from the Indian Government told the daily that the S-400 acquisition had been cleared on September 26 prior to an official visit of President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin to India. "However, there was no official word from the government".
After the inking of the contract, India will have to pay 15% of its basic cost (INR58.5 billion (USD810 million), according to the Times of India. The remaining amount of money will be paid in accordance with the deal`s delivery schedule. The first S-400 unit will be delivered to the Indian Armed Forces within 24 months after the signing of the contract. "All five S-400 systems, each comprising two batteries, will be shipped within 54-60 months," the newspaper said. "The S-400 [air defense system] can be used to protect cities or critically important pieces of infrastructure," the Times of India added.
New Delhi announced its plan to acquire the S-400 in October 2015, almost three years ago. In October 2016, Russia and India signed an intergovernmental agreement for five Triumf AD systems. Moscow and New Delhi are now discussing three projects in the field of military-technical cooperation, namely, the procurement of the S-400, four Project 11356 (Grigorovich-class) frigates, and some 200 Kamov Ka-226T (Hoodlum) light utility helicopters.