India will soon become the first country to have cruise missiles with hyper speed of over 6,000 km per hour, as an agreement for their joint development will be signed with Russia during the visit of President Dmitry Medvedev here in December.
The first unit of Kudankulam nuclear plant, built by Russia in Tamil Nadu, will also be commissioned during the visit slated to begin from December 21.
Medvedev will be undertaking the visit for annual India-Russia Summit with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, during which the two sides will discuss ways to further enhance their relations in various fields.
One of the highlights of the visit would be signing of a contract for joint development of hypersonic version of the BrahMos cruise missile, defence ministry sources said here.
This version of the missile will have a speed of over 6,000 kms per hour, making India the only country in the world to possess such missiles of this speed.
The speed of the existing variant of BrahMos is half than that of the proposed ones.
With a range of 290 kms, the hypersonic missiles are expected to be ready by 2015-16, the sources said.
The much-delayed first unit of Kudankulam nuclear power plant is also expected be made operational during the visit of Medvedev, who will be visiting the site for the purpose, they said.
The commissioning of the 1,000 MW Kudankulam-I, work on which began three years back, will set in motion the roadmap that the two countries are working on in the field of atomic energy cooperation.
Under the roadmap, a number of nuclear reactors would be set up by Russia in India.
Four of the reactors are envisaged to be established in Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu and one in Haripur in West Bengal, with scope for more in future.
The proposal to set up a Russian nuclear plant in Haripur is facing resistance from local people, but the government is hopeful of convincing them about its utility and allay their apprehensions.
The second unit of Kudankulam power plant will be made operational within six months of commissioning of the Unit-I.
During the visit of the Russian President, a number of other defence deals are also expected to be signed.