INDIA, RUSSIA TO INK NUCLEAR SUBMARINE DEAL
Why in News?
India is set to sign a $3-billion deal with Russia.
- The intergovernmental agreement for the submarine lease is likely to be inked on March 7.
- Akula class submarine — dubbed Chakra III the vessel will be ready by 2025 after an extensive building programme on mothballed hulls at a Russian shipyard.
- The Chakra III will be in service for at least 10 years and will replace the Chakra II that was obtained under similar conditions in 2012.
- It is believed that the lease of the Chakra II, which is to expire in 2022, could be extended for a five-year period till the new vessel gets built and tested.
- This will be the third Russian nuclear submarine to be operated by India, starting from 1988 when the original INS Chakra was taken on a three-year lease.
- The second was inducted in 2012 after a prolonged refit that saw a time delay.
- The Akula submarines are considered to be next only to newer US nuclear submarines when it comes to stealth and attack capabilities.