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India, Russia likely to sign 18 agreements during Putin's 4-day India visit
The four-day (14-17 October) visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to India will begin today. Recently, some serious doubts were raised on the nature of Indo-Russia relations, especially in the wake of strengthening ties between Moscow and Islamabad. Thus, this visit of Putin to India holds a greater significance.

Putin's visit has two major agendas; one, he will attend 8th BRICS summit that is being held in Goa from 15 Oct to 16 Oct, and earlier on Saturday, his Indian counterpart Prime Minister Narendra Modi will host him for the 17th India-Russia Annual Summit wherein India and Russia are likely to sign as many as 18 agreements.

Apart from that, defence and nuclear cooperation will be among the other highlights of their engagement. The third and fourth units of the Kudankulam nuclear power plant is also likely to be inaugurated. Yuri Ushakov, Putin's aide told Moscow news agencies that cooperation in nuclear energy will be one of the central themes of the visit.

Putin termed India as Russia's especially privileged strategic partner saying "our countries actively collaborate in the military technical field."

India had raised issue of the Russia's involvement in a joint military exercise with Pakistan just after the Uri terror attack by Pakistan-sponsored terrorists that killed 19 Indian soldiers.

After the declaration of "the India Russia Strategic Partnership," that was signed in October 2000, the annual India-Russia summits take place alternatively in both the countries. The initiative was taken by Putin himself as he tried to restore traditional amiability of the bilateral relationship that was lost during Boris Yeltsin's rule.

At the BRICS summit, India would insist on condemnation of global terrorism, if not cross-border terrorism. Putin shares similar views as he had said that BRICS was 'determined' to fight the issues of "terrorism, drug trafficking and corruption."

"For our five countries' leaders this meeting (in Goa) will be a good opportunity to harmonise our positions on key issues on the international agenda. We are determined to cooperate in the fight against terrorism, drug trafficking and corruption," Putin had said.

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