India and Russia held discussions in Hyderabad on possibility of cooperation in space exploration, including missions to the moon and Mars.
General Anatoly Perminov, Head of the Federal Space Agency, Russia met Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman G Madhavan Nair on the sidelines of the 58th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) held in Hyderabad.
"Discussions are on for possible cooperation with ISRO on missions to the moon and Mars," Perminov told PTI.
He said a special meeting of officials of space agencies from the two countries will be held in November to take the discussions forward.
India is launching its lunar mission 'Chandrayaan-I' next year and is expected to announce Chandrayaan-II soon after.
"International scientific community is keen to partner with India in Chandrayaan-II," a senior ISRO official said.
Under the India-Russia joint space programme, the two countries would launch a research satellite constructed by students early next year.
Indian students are building the satellite, called Youth Sat, while Russian students are constructing scientific instruments for the mission, which will study the earth's upper atmosphere.
Under the Indo-Russia joint project CORONAS-PHOTON, the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research will supply a low-energy gamma-ray telescope for a Russian spacecraft that will be launched before mid-2008 to study solar physics.
Discussions were also held to explore the possibility of India launching the Russian GLONASS-M satellites from its GSLV platforms and join Russia in developing the next generation GLONASS-K satellites for the Russian global navigation system.