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Former diplomat Mukul Sanwal
Former diplomat Mukul Sanwal

Former diplomats pin high hopes on Putin's visit to India, say Afghanistan, defence deals to be on top priority

ANI | Updated: Dec 05, 2021 23:15 IST


New Delhi [India], December 5 (ANI): Former Indian diplomats believe Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to India on Monday will be significant for both the countries and expect Afghanistan and defence deals will be on high priority for the bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Speaking about the significance of Putin's visit, former diplomat Mukul Sanwal said, "It is more significant visit because it is likely that partnership between India and Russia will emerge as a strong partnership between India and United States. It could even be stronger because Russia has had a long relationship with India. Focus areas will be geopolitics, future of Asia in a sense because we need to understand that the US approach to India was really to contain China now that they are getting into a policy of coexistence with China."
Echoing the similar sentiment, Former diplomat Suresh K Goel told ANI, "Politically in the strategic framework, it is a very important visit. Please do remember that, for the last two years, there have been no visits of any world leaders to each other's country. Afghanistan, I am sure will be one very major area because, in the case of Afghanistan, there seems to be a greater alignment between the interests of China and Russia."
However, Foreign affairs expert Qamar Agha believes that Russia is India's time tested friend and Putin and PM Modi share a great bond.
President Putin's visit is important as India and Russia has old defence ties and the S-400 is already coming in the country despite the US pressure.
"India wants good relations with all. 10 agreements are likely to be signed. 2+2 meeting is also taking place on the same day. Most important would be Afghanistan apart from defence cooperation, as Afghanistan is very important for both Russia and India. Taliban is Pakistan's proxy and India-Russia would try not to let Afghan soil used for terrorism."
Former Indian ambassador Anil Trigunayat mentioned that on the bilateral front President Putin and PM Modi shares tremendous camaraderie and will solve the issues pertaining to both countries.
"Both are strong leaders who like one another, and they know how to resolve the issues. And so the basic purpose of this annual summit is to iron out any wrinkles or any differences that exist in perception or clarification," Trigunayat said.
India prepares to host Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday for the annual India-Russia summit, New Delhi's time-tested partnership with Moscow is back in the limelight.
This will be the first in-person meeting between PM Modi and President Putin after their meeting on the sidelines of the BRICS summit in Brasilia in November 2019.
Putin decided to go ahead with the visit despite the emergence of a new COVID-19 strain Omicron which has affected the schedule of several bilateral and international summits.
During the summit, PM Modi and the Russian President will review the prospects of bilateral relations and will discuss ways to further strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries. (ANI)

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