India, Russia close to inking multi-billion agreement for AK-103 assault rifles

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  1. India and Russia are finalising an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) for a multi-billion deal to locally manufacture AK-103 assault rifles.
  2. According to the arrangement with Russia, a Kalashnikov factory will be set up in India in collaboration with the OFB (Ordnance Factories Board). It would cater to the forces for hinterland and counter-insurgency operations.
  3. The Indian Armed Forces are currently equipped with INSAS(Indian National Small Arms System) Rifle.There is an urgent requirement of replacing the in-service INSAS Rifle with an Assault Rifle which is compact, robust and modern in technology.
  4. India recently signed deals for S-400 air defence systems and stealth frigates.The agreement on Kamov-226T helicopters is in an advanced stage of negotiations.These deals are progressing in the backdrop of the looming threat of U.S. sanctions.