New Delhi: Army chief General Rawat on Sunday said the Russian Army is “very keen” on associating with the Indian Army, while stressing on the independence of Indian policymaking.
“Russians are very keen on associating with the Indian Army because we are very capable. We are capable of standing for what is right for us,” General Rawat said at the inaugural General K V Krishna Rao Memorial Lecture at Manekshaw Centre in New Delhi.
“When Russians asked about the American sanctions, my reply was, ‘Yes, we do appreciate that there could be sanctions on us, but we follow an independent policy. You can be rest assured. While we may be associating with America in getting some technology, but we follow an independent policy’,” he said.
General Rawat added, “I further told them, ‘While we are talking sanctions and you are questioning on sanctions, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are signing the treaty on the purchase of the S-400 weapon system in spite of the fact that we may face challenges from America in the future and a $5.3 billion deal has been signed between the two countries.”
The Army chief also said that India is “looking forward to getting Kamov helicopters”. “We are also looking forward to getting other weapon systems, space-based systems and technologies to enhance our space capabilities.”
General Rawat, who recently undertook a six-day visit to Russia, met the top brass of the Russian Armed Forces and key military formations and establishments. The delegation also visited the Mikhailovskaya Artillery Military Academy, the Headquarters of Western Military District in St. Petersburg and General Staff Academy.