India clears purchase of Russian air defense systems: sources

A frame grab taken from footage released by Russia's Defence Ministry November 26, 2015, shows a Russian S-400 defense missile system deployed at Hmeymim airbase in Syria. REUTERS/Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation/Handout via Reuters

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's Defence Acquisition Council has cleared the purchase of five S-400 air defense systems from Russia, two defense ministry sources said on Thursday. One of the sources, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the deal is expected to cost around 300 billion rupees ($4.52 billion) but that the final price tag would be negotiated during the procurement process. India's air defenses are old and outdated and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who heads to Moscow later this month to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin, is keen to modernize the country's defenses against airborne attacks. (Reporting by Nigam Prusty; Writing by Tommy Wilkes; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani)