Why is Russian S-400 missile defence system so important to India?
As US and India commence the first 2+2 dialogue on Thursday, one of the points to be stressed upon would be India’s purchase of Russian S-400 missile defence system. Pegged at about a whopping Rs 39,000 crore, this is arguably one of the costliest purchases — in this category — India has ever gone for. In July, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman underlined that India and Russia have concluded the commercial negotiations for the missile defence system, also known as Triumf.
The US has however been putting pressure on the Indian government, leaving no stone unturned to deter New Delhi from going ahead with the purchase. Most recently, a senior White House official went to the extent of saying that ‘waiver from US sanctions is ‘not guaranteed’ if India buys weapon platforms from Russia.
India has however told the US that it would go ahead with the purchase and that the US sanctions on Russia are a matter for Washington to deal with. But what is it about S-400 Triumf that is making New Delhi take a tough stand against the US sanctions and side with India’s all-weather friend Russia?
Features of the S-400 missile defence system:
With an ability to locate targets within the range of 600 km, the S-400 brings almost all the Pakistani airbases within India’s range.
With a capacity to engage with targets within the rage of 400 km, the missile system can simultaneously engage 72 targets and its radars can track 160 targets at a given point in time.
One of the major advantages of the S-400 Triumf is its easy deployability. The system boasts of being deployable within five minutes
India is reportedly planning to create five regiments of the Russian missile defence system
While India’s adversary on the northern frontiers- China, has already bought the system, some of the other countries to go ahead with the purchases are Turkey, Saudi Arabia along with Morocco and Qatar.
On the diplomatic level, the purchase would send a strong message to Moscow that India remains its all-weather friend, no matter what the international pressures. This is more significant in light of a growing closeness between Islamabad and Moscow and an alienation of Moscow by the international community in light of the US sanctions.
Source:- Times Now Digital