Modi government says no to Adani for AK-103 rifle deal with Russia

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First Published 30, Aug 2018, 4:09 PM IST
Modi rejects Russia AK-103 assault rifle Adani make in India joint production ordnance
Highlights

In inter-governmental agreements, either side cannot suggest names of private sector entities for partnership, said a source in the Union government. Following the rejection of Russia's choice of a partner, the public sector ordnance factories in India are likely to be the production agency for the rifles proposed for joint production.

New Delhi: At a time when the Congress has been accusing the NDA of being a 'government of Ambani and Adani', the Narendra Modi government has rejected a Russian proposal to jointly manufacture AK-series assault rifles with the Adani group, which has recently entered the defence equipment manufacturing business.

India and Russia have been discussing a government-to-government deal for manufacturing of Kalashnikov-103 assault rifles in India since Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's Moscow visit in April.

"The Russians had proposed that they wanted to partner with private sector company Adani (Defence & Aerospoace) for a joint production of assault rifles in India, but we have said no to them. In inter-governmental agreements, they can't suggest names of private sector entities for partnership," senior government sources told MyNation.

From the Russian side, the partner for the joint manufacturing of these guns would be the firm producing the AK-47 series rifles. Following the rejection of their choice of a partner, the ordnance factories are likely to be the production agency for the rifles proposed for joint production.

As per the original defence ministry plan too, the ordnance factories were to be the production agency for this project.

The AK-103 is a modern version of the AK-47 assault rifles, which have been a superhit across the globe since they started manufacturing these after the end of the Second World War.

As per the plan, India would be manufacturing more than a million of these rifles, which will be used not only by the Army but also by the central paramilitary forces and State police forces.

The Adani group recently announced its entry into the defence sector by announcing a partnership with Swedish firm Saab for the fighter aircraft manufacturing programme for the Air Force.

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