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India marks 85th Indian Air Force Day। Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa says IAF working towards ‘Technology Intensive’ capability। For the first time, indigenous LCA Tejas takes part in IAF Day Flypast । IAF will issue RFI for 114 single engine combat aircraft within two weeks or so । RFI will go to Lockheed Martin for F 16 and Saab for Gripen for their latest variants । IAF aims to get 18 aircraft in 4-5 years, and 96 more in progressive manufacture from then onwards । Capability will be the first parametre for selecting the aircraft, and then the price । The selected aircraft will have more capabilities than those specified in the 2007 RfP for MMRCA । 18 aircraft will । IAF will consider General Atomics’ Predator C Avenger if offered by US Government। But, says Air Chief BS Dhanoa, no RFI or RFP issued yet by IAF yet। Government approves partial disinvestment in HAL। HAL initiates process for 10 percent disinvestment through Initial Public Offer (IPO)। Indian Army destroys NSCN (K) camps on Indo-Myanmar borders.। India says No to Troops Deployment in Afghanistan। India, US Entering a New Phase in Strategic Defence Partnership, says Nirmala Sitharaman। Mattis describes India as a Major Pillar of Regional Stability and Security। German Chancellor Wins 4th Term। First Scorpene submarine delivered to Navy। Named Kalvari, after India’s first Foxtrot class submarine, it will formally be commissioned very soon। India’s legend, Marshal of the Air Force Arjan Singh passes away।
October 18, 2017
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Swaraj, Tillerson converse; resolve enhanced Indo-US ties

By Nilova Roy Chaudhury February 2017
 

New Delhi. India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj spoke with the new US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson February 15, and resolved to “further expand and deepen” India-US ties.

Combating terrorism together was another key feature of their 10 minute conversation, their first telephonic conversation since the new US administration assumed office.

“The External Affairs Minister and Secretary Tillerson resolved to work together closely to further expand and deepen the multi-faceted strategic partnership between India and the US,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement issued late on February 15.

They also agreed to follow-up on the firm resolve expressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump to cooperate closely in the global fight against terrorism

“They emphasized that close and strong relations between India and the US were not only in mutual interest but also had regional and global significance. In this context, they agreed to intensify cooperation in various sectors, including defence and security, energy, and economy” the MEA statement added.

Tillerson, former CEO of oil major Exxonmobil, assumed office as the Secretary of State under the new Trump administration on February 1, after he was approved by the houses of Congress.

This was Swaraj’s first telephonic conversation with 64-year-old Tillerson. Ms Swaraj is recovering at home after her kidney transplant. She has been working from home since her surgery and subsequent discharge from hospital.

Indo-US relations have been on an upward trajectory since the beginning of the millennium, with rapidly growing defence, security and trade linkages, and can now be counted among India’s most comprehensive and wide-ranging strategic partnerships.

Even before he assumed office, President Trump has said India and the United States would be “best friends.”

Speaking at a seminar on global economics, India’s Foreign Secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar cautioned the Indian strategic community to not rush to “demonise” President Trump but to “analyse” his actions, several of which have generated considerable public outcry.

Less than a month in office, the Trump administration has been beset with a variety of controversies, the most recent of which has been the resignation of Michael Flynn, the US National Security Advisor, over his alleged ties with Russia.

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