Antony says India-US ties not against China

New Delhi: India today made it clear that its growing ties with the US didn`t mean that it was teaming up with America against China. "No, that is not correct. We are strengthening our armed forces by providing most modern and complex equipment to them.

It is not against any country but to protect our territorial integrity," Defence Minister A K Antony said here. The Minister was replying to a question if the US wanted to work with India mainly because of the China factor. "We want to have a very modern and capable force capable of protecting our territorial integrity and any challenge from any quarters," he said.

In recent past, there have been western media reports that India and the US have developed close military ties to take on the rising military power of the Chinese armed forces.

India, which was earlier heavily dependent on Russian military hardware, has started procuring American equipment in the last five to six years. In this timeframe, it has procured equipment worth over USD 8 billion from there including acquiring systems such as the C-130J and C-17 transport aircraft, P-8I maritime surveillance planes and a warship–`USS Trenton`.