India - Russia Military Relations for UPSC/APSC Mains exam

India-Russia Defence Cooperation for UPSC/APSC Mains exam

Hello, aspirants are you preparing for UPSC/APSC Mains exam? If yes, then you must be aware of the most important India Current Affairs topic for the upcoming competitive exam preparation. Therefore every aspirants need to know the recent trending current affairs topics for UPSC/APSC exam. In this regard "World_Polity" decides to provide you the most important Current Affairs topic of India, the India - Russia Military Relations for the upcoming UPSC/APSC mains exam. Infact the India - Russia Military Relations will be a key topic in the trending Current Affairs section for the upcoming Mains exam. So the India-Russia Defence Cooperation for the exams will be a pedestrian to crack your exam.

India-Russia Defence Cooperation

In this article we have provided you recent trending current affairs topic related to India and Russia special preferences to India - Russia Military RelationsSo, read this most important article on India - Russia Military Relations for the upcoming UPSC/APSC Mains exams. Infact the India-Russia Defence Cooperation is very important for APSC/UPSC mains exam.

India - Russia Military Relations for UPSC/APSC Mains exam

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their meeting at Hyderabad House, on December 6, 2021 in New Delhi, India.

India - Russia Military Relations

The India and Russia relationship have been a longstanding scenario. Since the signing of the “Declaration on the India-Russia Strategic Partnership” in October 2000, India-Russia ties have acquired a qualitatively new character with enhanced levels of cooperation in almost all areas of the bilateral relationship including political, security, defence, trade and economy, science and technology, and culture. 

However, the relations have taken a steep downfall over the past few years, especially in the post-COVID scenario. One of the biggest causes for this is Russia’s close relations with China and Pakistan, which have caused many geopolitical issues in the past few years for India. 

The two countries, however, need to amend their policies as they are interdependent on each other in various ways and continuing cordial ties shall be beneficial for both, India and Russia.

Why in the News?

• Defence cooperation is an important pillar of the India-Russia strategic partnership. As a result of friendly relations, thousands of Indian students in Ukraine have been evacuated under the Operation Ganga. It is an ongoing operation by the Government of India to provide humanitarian assistance amidst the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine to Indian citizens who have crossed over to neighboring countries.

India-Russia Defence Cooperation

Defence cooperation is an important pillar of the India-Russia strategic partnership. It is guided by the Programme for Military Technical Cooperation signed between the two countries which is valid, at present till 2020. It enshrines the interest of the two governments to further develop and strengthen the military and technical cooperation in the sphere of research and development, production and after sales support of armament systems and various military equipment. The two sides also have periodic exchanges of armed forces personnel and military exercises.

India and Russia have an institutionalized structure to oversee the complete range of issues of military technical cooperation. The India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-MTC), set up in 2000, is at the apex of this structure. The two Defence Ministers meet annually, alternately in Russia and India, to discuss and review the status of ongoing projects and other  issues of military technical cooperation. There are two Working Groups and seven Sub-Groups under the IRIGC-MTC, which review and discuss an array of military technical issues. In 2008, a high level committee called the High Level Monitoring Committee (HLMC) was set up with Defence Secretary from the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of India and Director of Federal Service for Military Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) from the Russian Federation as its co-chairs.

History of India- Russian Defence Relations

• India was dependent on British & other Western nations, for procuring its arms.

• By 1970s, India was importing majority of the weapons from the USSR (now known as Russia).

• Some of the most important weapons like nuclear submarines, aircraft carriers, tanks, guns, fighter jets, and missiles have been provided to India by Russia which is also the second-largest arms exporter in the world, following only the United States.

• According to an estimate, the use of Russian-origin weapons across Indian Armed Forces is as high as 85%.

• Between 2000 and 2020, Russia accounted for 66.5% of India's arms imports.

• Russia's share in Indian arms imports was down to about 50% between 2016 and 2020, but it still remained the largest single importer.

Current Scenario of India - Russia Military Relations

Over the years, cooperation in the military technical sphere has evolved from a purely buyer-seller relationship to joint research, design development and production of state of the art military between Russia and India. Russia also continues to offer advanced weapons platforms at relatively attractive rates.

Political Relations between India and Russia

The Annual Summit meeting between the Prime Minister of India and the President of the Russian Federation is the highest institutionalised dialogue mechanism in the strategic partnership between India and Russia. As of 2020, 20 Annual Summit meetings have taken place alternatively in India and Russia

14 MoUs in the fields of Trade and Investments, defence cooperation, Road Transport and cooperation in oil and gas sectors were signed during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2019

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Vladimir Putin held their first informal Summit in the city of Sochi in the Russian Federation on May 21, 2018

On April 12, 2019, President Putin signed the Executive Order on awarding PM Narendra Modi Russia’s highest state decoration – The order of St Andrew the Apostle

The order was presented to PM for his distinguished contribution to the development of a privileged strategic partnership between Russia and India and friendly ties between the Russian and Indian peoples

Two Inter-Governmental Commissions – one on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technological and Cultural Cooperation (IRIGC-TEC), and another on Military-Technical Cooperation (IRIGC- MTC), meet annually

What Defence Equipment is procured from Russia by India?


• The first submarine in India was by the Soviet. 

• In 1967, INS Kalvari was the first Foxtrot Class submarine bought from the USSR which entered the Indian service in 1967. 

• Of the total 16 conventional diesel-electric submarines with the Indian Navy, eight are Kilo class, of Soviet origins.

• India's indigenously manufactured Nuclear Ballistic Submarine INS Arihant is one of the four that is being built. However, a lot of technology is based on Russian platforms.

Frigates & Guided-missile Destroyers

Aircraft Carrier

• The only aircraft carrier in service with India, INS Vikramaditya, is a Soviet-made Kiev-class vessel came into service for Indian Navy.

Missile Program

• The Missile Programme of India has been developed with a major help from Russia.

• The BrahMos Missile has been developed jointly with Russia, which India would begin exporting soon.

Fighter Aircraft

• Russia has also been one of the main exporters of fighter aircraft to India, including hundreds of Sukuoi & MiG Jets.

Arms and Ammunitions

• According to the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS), India's present military arsenal is heavily stocked with Russian-made or Russian-designed equipment.


• Indian Army's main Battle Tank Force is composed predominantly of Russian T-72M1 (66%) & T-90S (30%).

Impact of Russia-Ukraine War on Military Supplies

• The immediate effect would be the delay in ongoing projects by Russia.

• There are major Defence Deals between India & Russia that might get affected due to the current war situation.

S-400 Triumf Air- Defence System Deal

• The delivery of the system had started last December and based on the contract signed between the two sides, the complete delivery of five regimental kits from Russia is expected to be 2025.

• The deal has been under the threat of American sanctions, even as the US had not decided on it yet.

Joint Submarine

• Development has also pitched to make six Air Independent Propulsion (AIP-powered) conventional submarines for the Navy under the P75-1 project, along with four other international bidders.

• India is also in talks with Russia to lease two nuclear-ballistic submarines, Chakra 3 and Chakra the first of which is expected to be delivered by 2025.

India's Plans to Diversify Arms Import Diversification

• There has been a continual effort in the expansion of weapons platform bases not just to other countries, but domestic production as well.

• As per Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), it was reported that between 201115 and 2016-20, arms imports in India decreased by 33%.

• In 2011-15 the USA was the second-largest arms supplier to India, but in 2016-20 India's arms imports from the USA were 46% lower than in the previous five-year period, making the USA the fourth largest supplier to India in 2016-20.

• France and Israel were the second and third largest arms suppliers to India in 2016-20.

Way Forward

It is important for India to not become dependent on one nation, rather spread across the base & also become self-reliant.

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