Discussions with US Defence Secretary will add new vigour to ties: Rajnath Singh2 min read . Updated: 26 Oct 2020, 06:38 PM IST
According to a person familiar with the matter, India-China tensions were discussed during the '2+2' talks between Mark Esper and Rajnath Singh
New Delhi: China’s aggressive posturing, including along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) border with India, increasing bilateral cooperation and seeking US investment and technology in India’s defence sector were some of the issues that came up for discussion between India and US defence ministers on Monday.
US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper who arrived in New Delhi on Monday is in India for the third round of “2+2" talks that sees the defence and foriegn ministers of the two countries sitting across the table.
“India is delighted to host the US Secretary of Defence, Dr. Mark Esper. Our talks today were fruitful, aimed at further deepening defence cooperation in a wide range of areas. Today’s discussions will add new vigour to India-US defence relations & mutual cooperation. @EsperDoD," Singh said in a Twitter post.
A second Twitter post from the defence ministry spokesman Bharat Bhushan said that Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat, Chief of Army Staff MAnoj Mukund Naravane, Chief of Air Staff, Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria, Chief of Navy Staff, Karambir Singh, Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar, Defence secretary production Raj Kumar and the head of Defence research and development organisation G. Satheesh Reddy were among those who were part of the indian delegation for the talks.
According to a person familiar with the matter, India-China tensions were discussed in the meeting between Esper and Singh. Ties between India and China have plummeted after India detected multiple intrusions by Chinese soldiers into Ladakh. Around 100,000 troops of both countries are engaged in a tense military stand off in Ladakh. With Indian troops not willing to withdraw from the heights of Ladakh, india has sourced specialised gear, tents and equipment to clothe and shelter the troops including from the US.
Increasing cooperation between Indian and US navies in the Indo-Pacific region was another issues that came up during talks, the person cited above said.
India invited US companies to invest under the Make in India programme, the person said adding that the indian side briefed the US delegation of the reforms undertaken in the defence sector to improve the investment climate. New Delhi announced a slew of measures including raising the cap on foreign investment in the defence from 49% to 74% in May in a bid to promote defence manufacturing in the country. India a big importer of arms is looking at establishing a defence industrial base to boost manufacturing and job creation in the country.