India to buy $4b worth of military equipment from US, Latest World News - The New Paper

India to buy $4b worth of military equipment from US

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NEW DELHI : US President Donald Trump said yesterday that India will buy US$3 billion (S$4.2 billion) worth of military equipment, including attack helicopters, as the two countries deepen defence and commercial ties.

India and the US were also making progress on a big trade deal, he said. Negotiators from the two sides have wrangled for months to narrow differences on farm goods, medical devices, digital trade and new tariffs.

Mr Trump was accorded a massive reception in Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's home state of Gujarat on Monday, with more than 100,000 people at a cricket stadium for a "Namaste Trump" rally.

Yesterday, Mr Trump sat down for one-on-one talks with Mr Modi, followed by delegation-level meetings to try and move forward on issues that have divided them, mainly the festering trade dispute.

After those meetings, Mr Trump said his visit had been productive with the conclusion of deals to buy helicopters for the Indian military. India is buying 24 SeaHawk helicopters from Lockheed Martin equipped with Hellfire missiles worth US$2.6 billion and also plans a follow-on order for six Apache helicopters. India is modernising its military to narrow the gap with China.

But in a sign of the underlying political tensions in India, violent protests broke out in Delhi on Monday over a new citizenship law that critics say discriminates against Muslims and is a further attempt to undermine the secular foundations of India's democracy.

At least seven were killed and about 150 injured in the clashes that took place in another part of the capital.- REUTERS