Putin’s short visit to New Delhi brings greater significance to India-Russia relations

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New Delhi — Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in India on December 6 for bilateral talks with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his second overseas visit this year.

The summit meeting between the two leaders took place hours after the first 2 + 2 dialogue between the Foreign Ministers and the Defense Ministers of both countries. In total, the two countries have signed 28 agreements, including agreements between governments in several areas.

In his post-summit remarks, Modi said that in the last few decades there have been “fundamental changes” at the global level and many “new geopolitical equations” have emerged.

“But India-Russia relations have been constant among all these variables.” Modi said. “The two countries have not only cooperated without hesitation, but have also paid special attention to each other’s sensibilities.”

Experts said the bilateral meeting shows that India and Russia consider the involvement of their foreign policy to be important in the changing world order.

“Indian authorities may talk about historical and close ties with Russia, but there are strategic aspects to these ties. India keeps Russia away from China and Russia goes to Pakistan. We don’t want to sell high-value military equipment. Apalna Pande, director of the Washington-based Hudson Institute’s initiative on the future of India and South Asia, told the Epoch Times in a text. ..

Putin’s visit to India shows that both India and Russia prefer “multipolarization” in an evolving world order, said Hirsch V. Pants, director of the Strategic Research Program at the Delhi-based Observer Research Foundation. I told the Epoch Times on the phone.

“Neither wants a single country to control Indo-Pacific or world politics in a significant way,” Pants said. “They prefer the spread of power and the multipolarity in a multi-centered world order. To that end, they are ready to cooperate with each other and with other nations.”

Epoch Times Photo
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Hyderabad House in New Delhi on December 6, 2021. (Photo courtesy of India Press)

China factor

Jagannath Panda, a researcher and center coordinator at the East Asian Manohar Parical Defense Institute, said the Putin-Modi talks took place while Russia faced new challenges from China.

“Xi Jinping’s assertive foreign policy is a challenge for many countries, including Russia and India,” Panda told The Epoch Times in an email. “Although relations between Russia and China are relatively stable, Russia still faces ongoing challenges in dealing with China’s economic invasion in Central Asia and the wider Eurasian region.”

Russia and China balance with India through the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, strengthening partnerships with India on a variety of multilateral platforms. I said I want to. The influence and control of the Chinese Communist Party.

“Putin’s visit to India after the pandemic lays the foundation for this multilateral cooperation,” said Panda.

Madab Narapat, strategic analyst and vice-chairman of the Manipal Advanced Research Group, said Putin must maintain Russia’s “self-esteem” by not accepting China’s “dictat”, including a double talk on terrorism. He said he had to.

“It’s a shame that Russia has joined China to secure LeT. [Lashkar-e-Taiba] And JeM [Jaish-e-Mohammed] It was not mentioned in the joint communiqué of foreign ministers of India-China-Russia. China opposes terrorism, but claims to be strengthening its Pakistani army, a terrorist nursery. “

Foreign Ministers of India, China and Russia Meet online for their 18th tripolar Cooperation meeting on November 26th. LeT and JeM International terrorist organization Based in Pakistan.

“Putin must ensure that the example of Modi’s strategic autonomy continues with him. A visit to India will help in the process,” Narapat said.

India recently purchased Russian S-400 air defense system China has already deployed the same system at the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region air force base and Nyingchi, Tibet, allegedly disrupting India’s operations and curbing rivals.

India’s purchase of the S-400 system from Russia is “deeply linked” to the threat facing China, Pande said.

“There is also a historical background. Until the Sino-Soviet conflict, the Soviet Union was actively punished by India, but it favored China instead of India (for example, the 1962 war). The Soviet Union moved to India. It was after the split that I approached, “she said.

“Due to China’s growing movement of salami slices along the northern border of India, China’s presence in all neighboring countries of India’s South Asia, and China’s penetration into the Indian Ocean region, which is India’s area of ​​influence, Delhi Whenever a future conflict arises, either Russia is neutral or the Indian camp, “Pande said. “One way to do this is to buy more from Russia.”

Epoch Times Photo
Russia’s S-400 anti-aircraft missile system will pass through Red Square during a military parade on Victory Day in Moscow on May 9, 2021. (Via GirillKudryavtsev / AFP, Getty Images)

New Cold War equation

Putin will meet with US President Joe Biden for two hours at a video conference on Tuesday, and Narapat will make India independent of its closest security partner, the United States, by meeting with President Putin the day before the Byden Putin meeting. He said he showed that he was.

India, the United States and Russia need to understand that they are facing a common threat from China, Narapat said.

“India can be a bridge between the United States and Russia. In the new Cold War, the United States must not fight on two sides, China and Russia, nor does its security partner, India. “Narapat said. “In the Cold War between the United States and Russia, China was on the United States side. Biden must focus on the real threat and join India to establish a good relationship with Moscow.”

Mr Pande said the United States understands India’s concerns, but the two countries have different views on Russia.

“The United States still sees Russia as a threat both domestically and globally. India believes that China is a greater threat and Russia could be separated from China,” Pande said. rice field.

“India is a close American partner and friend, but unlike many other countries in the Indo-Pacific and other members of the quad, it is not a military ally of the United States. Therefore, India continues its policy of strategic autonomy. There is more room to maintain relations with countries like India, which Russia and the United States consider to be a threat. “

Panda said the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan forced Russia to reassess the crisis in Afghanistan.

“Russia, in principle, wants the Taliban to take power in Afghanistan, but in Moscow there is a perception that practical security in Afghanistan and the wider area is not in favor of Russia. We need India’s partnership to address the new security challenges raised by the region, “said Putin’s visit to India, considering how India and Russia can work together on the Afghanistan issue. He added that it provides a fresh context for doing.

President Putin’s visit shows that Russia wants to keep India “high” in its foreign policy efforts, and the Indian side says India has no intention of downgrading Russia in its foreign policy calculations. There is also a message.

“Both sides want to keep the relationship away from co-dependence on defense involvement because it was the driving force of the relationship. They want to make it wider. They want it to be more sustainable. They want to attract more stakeholders, focus on economic and trade issues along with energy, and make relationships healthier and independent of a single dimension. I am.

Mr Pande said India should work for a multifaceted relationship with Russia as well as the United States and continue to defend and buy energy.

Venus Upadayaya

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Venus Upadhayaya reports on various issues. Her area of ​​expertise is geopolitics in India and South Asia. She reports from the highly volatile Indian-Pakistan border and has contributed to India’s mainstream print media for almost a decade. Community media, sustainable development and leadership continue to be her key areas of interest.

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