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Relations with other countries not at the cost of Russia

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (L) and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh pose for the media. A File Photo.

MOSCOW (PTI): India has said it is committed to nurture and consolidate strategic partnership with Russia as it remains "in the focus of Indian radar".

During his 20-minute meeting with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Tuesday, Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma assured him that despite New Delhi's growing engagement with the US, "Russia remains in the focus of Indian radar".

"I reiterated India's abiding commitment to nurture and consolidate the strategic partnership with Russia," he told reporters after his parleys with the Russian strongman.

Earlier, speaking at the third India-Russia Forum on Trade and Investment attended by over 350 business and industry leaders of the two countries, Sharma, without mentioning the US, said India's engagement with other countries will not be at the cost of Moscow.

He said "no country" could substitute New Delhi's relations with Russia as it was based on trust and friendship.

The Union minister underlined that some of the Indian space achievements, including Chandrayaan-1 lunar mission and recent launching of multiple satellites by ISRO, were possible due to 'consistent technological support' from Russia.

Sharma said, Putin, who is expected to visit India early next year, welcomed the diversification of Indian trade basket by moving to joint projects, ventures and investments in core sectors of economy including space, defence, infrastructure, IT, Telecom, in all forms of energy including non-conventional and nuclear.

Sharma said India's recent space achievements, including the Chandrayan-1 lunar mission and multiple satellite launches were the result of technological cooperation with Russia.

"Sky is the limit when it concerns our cooperation in high-technology with Russia," he said.

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