Narendra Modi Visits Russia: Will The Indian PM Be Able To Crack The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Deal?
After Germany and Spain, the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi reached St. Petersburg, Russia late Wednesday night to attend the 18th India – Russia Annual Summit.
Modi is on a back to back four-nation tour which began with Germany, followed by Spain, Russia, and France.
Reached the historic city of St. Petersburg. Looking forward to a fruitful visit aimed at cementing India-Russia relations. pic.twitter.com/0vZTiS0euh— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 31, 2017
The national heads of both the countries are supposed to meet today in St. Petersburg and are expected to sign an agreement to build the last two units of the Kudankulam nuclear power plant with Moscow's help. The nuclear deal is going to be the highlight of this meeting.
Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant, Tamil Nadu image source
If Modi succeeds in cracking the deal, the last two units of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power deal will be realized, thus producing 1,000 MW of electricity from each unit, hence boosting India’s nuclear power generation.
Indian officials told PTI that the last minute discussions are going between the two countries regarding the General Framework Agreement (GFA) for setting up of units 5 and 6 of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP).
The reactors are being constructed by the India’s Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd. in collaboration with Russia's Atomstroyexport company.
Apart from the nuclear deal, bilateral agreements are expected to be signed between the two countries in various sectors, including science and technology, cultural exchanges, railways and finance among others.
The Indian ambassador to Russia, Pankaj Sharan told PTI, “There is a lot of mutual trust and personal chemistry between the two leaders that has developed over the last three years.” He further added, “The leaders will take stock of the current relationship and discuss a blueprint for a vision of the future.”
The prime minister will begin his Russia tour on Thursday with a visit to the Piskariovskoe cemetery, a memorial built for 500,000 Russians killed in Leningrad during World War II. After the summit, he will be received by the Russian President Putin at his official residence, Konstantin Palace followed by a private dinner in St Petersburg. On Friday, PM Modi will attend the St Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Before his arrival in Russia, Modi wrote an article in a Russian newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta sharing his thoughts about the nation. He said, “We have been together in times - good and bad.”
“India-Russia relations have been the one constant in a world that has changed dramatically since 1947. They have withstood the test of time and grown from strength to strength. The resilience of our relationship is based on the fact that it rests on the principles of equality, trust, and mutual benefit,” Modi said.
After his three-day visit in Russia, Modi will leave for France where he will meet the newly elected President Emmanuel Macron in Paris.
Let’s hope that PM Modi successfully cracks the Nuclear Power deal which will eventually make India more self-sufficient in the energy sector and a brighter nation.