Second N-sub from Russia

India is in talks with Russia to lease a second nuclear submarine for 10 years.

By OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT
  • Published 1.11.15
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The Kashalot is in the same class as the INS Chakra (in picture) that is in service with the Indian Navy

New Delhi, Oct. 31: India is in talks with Russia to lease a second nuclear submarine for 10 years.

The K-322 Kashalot is a 27-year-old boat in the same class as the Nerpa - now called the INS Chakra - that is in the service of the Indian Navy on a lease.

Defence minister Manohar Parrikar, who left for Moscow for annual talks with his counterpart Sergey Shoigu, is expected to clinch the deal. But an official announcement on the nuclear submarine would be a rarity since New Delhi and Moscow do not publicly disclose the full extent of the strategic partnership.

"They (projects) may not take final shape during my visit but we would like to prepare some of them for Narendra Modi's visit to Russia in December," Parrikar told the Russian news agency, Tass, before his departure.

Among the projects that may be signed is a joint production facility in India for Kamov Ka-226 helicopters. New Delhi also proposes to buy an unspecified number of S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft missiles from Moscow.

"Then there are Mi-17V-5 helicopters, which we also intend to negotiate and finalise procurement for 48 more. With that, we will have some 280 Mi-17 helicopters," Parrikar said.

For the nuclear submarine, India will most likely pay Russia upfront to refurbish the 8,140-tonne boat. It is currently being repaired. The refurbishment could take up to three years.

This would be the third time that India would lease a nuclear-powered attack submarine from Russia. The Indian Navy's submarine fleet is ageing and has been depleted since the INS Sindhurakshak sank in August 2013.

The first of six conventional diesel-electric submarines, being built with the French at Mumbai, was floated this week.