Asserting that both India and Russia condemn terrorism in all ‘its forms and manifestations’, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar on Saturday insisted that its former cold war ally will “never do anything” against India’s best interests. “The sense of meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russia President Vladimir Putin was that the relationship has really progressed well in last nine months,” Jaishankar said during a press statement after the two heads of state held delegation-level talks on the sidelines of the BRICS summit in Goa.
Jaishankar added that India has expressed its gratitude to Russia for its unequivocal condemnation of the terror attack on Uri Army base, in which 19 Indian soldiers were killed last month. In response, India, in a well calibrated operation, carried out surgical strikes on the intervening night of September 28 and 29 across the Line of Control and attacked several terror launch pads.
Reflecting on the recently-signed agreements between both the leaders, Jaishankar described the announced scale of investments between India and Russia as ‘unprecedented’ and emphasised that its primary aim was to foster a better relationship with Russia in both private and public sectors.
Prior to the press statement, India and Russia signed a total of 16 agreements mostly in the fields of defence, energy, power, shipbuilding and space. Both PM Modi and President Putin inaugurated units 3 and 4 of the Kudankulam nuclear plant before making statements detailing the partnership between the two countries.
Top heads of state including Chinese President Xi Jinping and South African president Jacob Zuma are in Goa to attend the eighth BRICS summit.
BRICS is an association of emerging national economies comprising of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.