The visit of the deputy prime minister is seen as a continuation of the strong ties between New Delhi and Canberra despite the change of guard in the country.

Australia's Deputy Prime Minister and Defence minister Richard Marles will be in India next week.

It will be the first high-level visit from the country after the new Australian PM Anthony Albanese took charge last month. The new Australian defence minister will be in Delhi on 21st and 22nd and will hold talks with his counterpart Indian defence minister Rajnath Singh.

The visit of the deputy prime minister is seen as a continuation of the strong ties between New Delhi and Canberra despite the change of guard in the country.

Indian PM Modi and Australian PM had held bilateral talks in Tokyo on the sidelines of the Quad summit. After taking charge, the Australian minister has been to Singapore for the Shangri-La dialogue and later to Japan. At the Shangri-La Dialogue, he had said, "I look forward to visiting India soon to take forward the defence pillar of our comprehensive strategic partnership".

On the sideline of the Shangri-La Dialogue, he met South Korea's defence minister Lee Jong-sup, Japan's defence minister Kishi Nobuo, French defence minister S├ębastien Lecornu and a number of other defence ministers from other countries including Canada, Fiji etc. He also participated in a trilateral with the American and Japanese defence ministers and held talks with Chinese defence minister Wei Fenghe. Australia along with many countries in the Indo Pacific including India have faced increased aggressive actions by China.

The visit is also a major outreach given the minister comes to India in less than a month since the new government took charge.

India and Australia have increased defence engagements. Both are part of the Malabar exercises, along with US, India and Japan.

Earlier this month India and Australia undertook maritime surveillance initiative in the Indian Ocean Region(IOR). A Royal Australian Air Force P-8A Poseidon aircraft was deployed in India under the initiative. Earlier this year an Indian P-8I aircraft was deployed in Darwin when both countries undertook coordinated maritime patrols in northern Australia for the first time.