New Delhi: Amid the Ukraine war and sanctions, Russia has started delivering the second squadron of the S-400 advanced surface-to-air missile defense system to India ahead of schedule. The delivery of the critical system will be completed by the end of this month and after that it will be deployed. The first squadron of the S-400 system arrived in India in December 2021 and has been deployed along the Punjab border to thwart any air strikes from both Pakistan and China. India has purchased five S-400 systems from Russia through a $5 billion deal signed in October 2018.
All five units of the S-400 system, which can shoot down a hostile aircraft or missile between 40 km and 400 km, are expected to be operational by 2022. The S-400 system is capable of tracking, engaging and addressing. Threatening Chinese or Pakistani fighters as they take off from airports. This system can track multiple targets at multiple levels and neutralize them simultaneously. India decided to upgrade its military infrastructure when the country was locked in a major confrontation with China along the Line of Actual Control in July 2020. The threat of a two-front war from China and Pakistan prompted India to sign a massive arms deal and Russia is still one of India’s largest arms suppliers.
There were fears of delays in the delivery of the critical weapon system following Russia’s war with Ukraine. However, with the delivery of the second squadron of the S-400 system, India is expected to gain other military capabilities. Earlier this month, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had visited India and met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and apprised them about the ongoing crisis in Ukraine while discussing bilateral ties. . Lavrov and Jaishankar discussed Russia’s crude oil offer, rupee-ruble payments, ongoing arms deals, the Ukraine crisis and the situation in Afghanistan and Iran.