Way Forward


  • India and Russia continue to share a common strategic rationale for their relationship: apart from bilateral synergies, the two are members of various multilateral organisations including BRICS, RIC, G20, East Asia Summit and SCO—where avenues for cooperation on issues of mutual importance exist.
  • The fact that Russia holds a permanent seat at the UN Security Council and has been a supporter of India on various issues including Kashmir at the international forum is of critical importance for India
  • India would do well to take steps to shore up its relations with Russia to prevent it from becoming more dependent than it is already on China.
    • At the same time, Russia would also benefit from diversifying its relations across the region, including India, so as to prevent its pivot to Asia becoming a pivot to China
  • Thus, India and Russia’s relationship cannot flourish on defence and historical linkages alone.
    • With systemic changes underway in international relations, new dimensions of cooperation need to be found to build a strong economic and strategic partnership.
    • Both nations could cooperate in areas like counterterrorism, cyber security, the Afghanistan conflict, outer space, and climate change
  • On the whole, Both India and Russia will have to learn to navigate their relationship amidst challenges emerging not just from bilateral factors but also regional and global ones, as both countries seek to strengthen their position at a time of flux in the international order.