India at SCO Summit and Indo-US COMCASA Agreement

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To attend the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation) summit as a full member. Both India and Pakistan became part of the grouping last year which was finalized at the summit held in Astana, Kazakhstan. Under the SCO Summit India enjoys an opportunity to showcase the kind of power it wants to be.

SCO Summit Significance

  • There are several challenges for India to address and opportunities to harvest in the SCO summit.
  • An important platform for India and Pakistan to discuss and resolve bilateral issues.
  • SCO summit is expected to provide another opportunity for cooperation between India and China after the Wuhan Summit.
  • Russia has been a consistent supporter of India՚s entry into the grouping.
  • Iran is an observer state that has applied for full SCO membership.
  • India՚s strategic interest in Iran՚s Chabahar port.

Indo-US COMCASA Agreement

  • U. S. team՚s recent visit to India.
  • Sorting out difference regarding “Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement” (COMCASA) .
  • The agreement is expected to facilitate transfer of high-end U. S. technology to India.
  • A fear that India՚s defence secrecy would be compromised.

COMCASA

  • To provide a legal framework for the transfer of communication.
  • Security equipment from the U. S. to India.
  • Facilitation of “interoperability” between the Indian and US forces.

Significance

  • Vital for a functional military relationship.
  • Strengthening mutual logistic assistance between the militaries.
  • US is further engaged in accommodating Indian concerns.
  • As per US COMCASA will facilitate the Indian military to use of high-end secured communication equipment.
  • Also if India is to get the armed version of the Sea Guardian drones from the US, COMCASA is very crucial.
  • US also granted the status of “Major Defence Partner” to India so as to facilitate transfer of high-end defence technology.

Risks

  • India is concerned about intrusive access COMCASA as it might grant the U. S to Indian military communication system.
  • A lot of indigenous Indian military platforms and Russian-origin may not be compatible with COMCASA.
  • Comprehensive agreements is politically risky for the ruling government.
  • Previously signed LEMOA (Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement) in 2006 created a political storm.

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