India will be obtaining the first squadron of the advanced S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile systems. This missile system is being bought from Russia. It will be obtained from October 2020 onwards with all the five squadrons slated for delivery by April 2023.
Junior Defence Minister Subhash Bhamre said in the Lok Sabha, “The S-400 systems will provide a capable air defence coverage to vulnerable areas/ vulnerable points.” India had inked the $ 5.43 billion (Rs. 40,000 crores) contract for the S-400 missile systems with Russia on October 5 last year.
There is also the threat of US financial sanctions over the S-400 deal under CAATSA (Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act). This seeks to prevent countries from buying Russian weapons or Iranian oil. Bhamre said India was “aware of all developments that may impact” procurement of weapon systems.
He added, “The government takes sovereign decisions based on threat perceptions, operational and technical aspects to keep the armed forces in a state of readiness to meet the entire spectrum of security challenges.”
The S-400 system can help detect, track and destroy hostile strategic bombers, jets, spy planes, missiles and drones at a range of 380 km. India plans to boost its air defence coverage along the unresolved borders with China and Pakistan as well as around cities like New Delhi.
The S-400 systems are highly automated and mobile. They have associated battle-management system of command posts and launchers, long-range acquisition and engagement radars, and all-terrain transporter-erector-launcher vehicles and four different kinds of missiles with strike range from 120 km to 380 km.
In 2014, the US had imposed financial sanctions on China. This was due to its deal with Russia regarding the S-400 batteries. India, however, is hopeful of getting a presidential waiver from theTrump administration.