Vol 13, No. 1 Jan-Mar 2018
Click Here to Download Full Issue
"India-Canada Relations: Present Reality
& Future Directions"
relationship has indeed taken a positive turn since Prime Minister Narendra
Modi’s visit to Canada in 2015. It was the first by an Indian Prime
Minister in about four decades.
While India and Canada
are members of the Commonwealth of Nations, robust democracies,
multicultural societies and have had very close cooperative ties, a sort of
bitterness had entered the relationship in the aftermath of India’s nuclear
test in 1974. Canada played a prominent role in promoting nuclear export
control rules against India. A Working relationship continued but the
mistrust level was high - until recently. However, today the two countries
have embarked upon a new path of bilateral cooperation in the civil nuclear
During Prime Minister
Narendra Modi’s visit to Canada in April 2015, both sides agreed to elevate
their bilateral relations to a strategic partnership. However, the
strategic content remains wafer thin. The ties essentially rest on 3Es -
economy, energy and education.
The just concluded visit
of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to India (18-24 February 2018)
was expected to further boost bilateral relationship. The visit does not
seem to have produced the desired results.
The two countries need to
take a long-term view for safeguarding their mutual interests. What should
each side do?
PREM BUDHWAR: Ambassador Prem K. Budhwar, served as
India’s High Commissioner to Canada for nearly five years from 1992 to
1997. He was commissioned by the Indian Council of World Affairs to do a
special study on Canada, and his book Canada-India: Partners in Progress,
was published in 2016.
India-Canada Relations: a Roller-Coaster Ride
RAJIV BHATIA: Ambassador
Rajiv Bhatia is a former Ambassador/High Commissioner to Kenya, Myanmar,
Mexico and South Africa. He had earlier served as India's Consul General in
Toronto (Canada). He is presently a Distinguished Fellow at Gateway House,
Relations - Post-Trudeau Visit: the Road Ahead
VISHNU PRAKASH: Ambassador Vishnu Prakash, a former Ambassador of India to Republic of
Korea, a former spokesperson, was till recently, India’s High Commissioner
Case for a Fresh Start with Canada
SHASHI U. TRIPATHI: Ambassador Shashi Uban Tripathi is a former High Commissioner of India to
Canada and a former Secretary, Ministry of External affairs. She was
earlier Indian High Commissioner to Zimbabwe and Consul General of India at
Steadying India-Canada Relations: Through Trust
ABDUL NAFEY and POOJA GOPAL: Professor
Abdul Nafey is Professor, Centre for Canadian, US
& Latin American Studies, School of International Studies, JNU; and Ms.
Pooja Gopal is Research
Scholar in the same Centre.
India-Canada Relations: Convergences Outweigh
APARAJITA KASHYAP: Dr. Aprajita
Kashyap is an Assistant Professor at the Centre
for Canadian, US and Latin American Studies, School of International
Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.
India-Canada Relations: Environment and Climate
SITAKANTA MISHRA: Dr Sitakanta
Mishra is Assistant Professor, Faculty of
International Relations at the School of Liberal Studies (SLS) of Pandit Deendayal Petroleum
University (PDPU), Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
India-Canada Nuclear Relations: From a Troubled
Past towards a Promising Future
PINAK R CHAKRAVARTY: A former secretary in the Ministry of External
Affairs, a former High Commissioner to Bangladesh and a former Ambassador
to Thailand. He is currently a Distinguished Fellow at the Delhi-based
Observer Research Foundation.
Global Priorities and the Role Of
Act East Policy
There is no appetite for any large scale conflict
in the current international order. There will be competition and
cooperation. World leaders meet frequently in a variety of global fora and
these frequent interactions help to defuse tensions. A China-centric
international order cannot be stable.
China has no history of being a global hegemon. China’s "Middle
Kingdom” mentality was regional, and limited to China’s periphery even in
sub-regions which have been absorbed in Chinese territory. Moreover,
China’s authoritarian state structure which precludes democratic decision
making and transparency is ill suited for a global role. China has no
history of creating and protecting an international order based on
maintaining public goods.
Thus, the current phase in the international order
will require India to navigate by hedging, band-wagoning, and forming
coalitions with like-minded powers to ensure that the international order
moves towards a multipolar configuration. One can call this approach
“Flexible Multipolarity”. Avoidance of conflict will certainly be a main
pillar of this policy for India. This will require building deterrence,
both conventional and non-conventional; the judicious management of our
periphery; going full speed ahead on domestic reforms, economic growth, job
creation, spreading skills; as well as maintaining a stable social order.
It is from domestic strength that we can build the sinews of our foreign
DEEPAK BHOJWANI: Ambassador Deepak Bhojwani
is a former Ambassador of India to Colombia
and to Venezuela. He is the
author of Latin America, the Caribbean and India: Promise and Challenge,
Pentagon Press 2015.
Latin America: The Way Forward
Indian diplomacy has been prominent this century,
leveraging an economy that has shed inhibitions and grown impressively.
Latin America however remains distant, geographically and conceptually.
Political relations are cordial but seldom ascend to levels of strategic
empathy. Both sides have deepened exchanges with almost all other regions
and international partners in greater measure than with each other.
Still, trade has grown over thirty percent
annually between 2000 and 2014. Latin American resources are an ideal fit
for Indian technology, industrial capacity, and markets. The deceleration,
since 2015, has as much to do with the global slowdown as with the lack of
a strategy and measures to consolidate an evidently complementary
Relations have been predicated on bilateral priorities.
Political diversity, varying economic endowments, lack of adequate human
resources, and institutional underpinning, poor connectivity, and language
issues present challenges for Indian stakeholders The Indian establishment
needs to take a holistic view of its interests in, and exchanges with,
Latin America. This includes collaboration in international forums,
recognition of the importance of regional integration within Latin America,
as well as the linkages being established by this region with other
Latin American regimes have been focussed on
commodity exports and investment incentives apart from stray investments in
an India that offers promise for a region struggling to improve its
international bargaining power. A re-prioritisation of the relationship is
essential, and should be complemented by more discerning and energetic
This paper outlines issues, priorities, and
impediments that define the relationship. It emphasises the need for both
sides to develop a realistic model, based on factual realities, that
enables India and its Latin American partners to forge a common strategy
and assume their rightful place in the new global order.
BHASWATI MUKHERJEE: Ambassador Bhaswati Mukherjee, is a
former Permanent Representative of India to UNESCO, Paris and former
Ambassador of India to the Netherlands.
Rajendra K Jain
(Ed), India, Europe and Pakistan (New Delhi, 2017, K W
Publishers), Pages: 318, Price: Rs. 1,280.00.
FAZZUR RAHMAN SIDDIQUI: Dr. Fazzur R. Siddiqui is a Research Fellow, Indian Council of World
Affairs, New Delhi
P. R. Kumaraswamy, Squaring the Circle: Mahatma Gandhi
and the Jewish National Home (New Delhi, Knowledge
World, 2017), Pages: 234, Price: Rs. 920.00
RAJESH RAJAGOPALAN: Prof. Rajesh
Rajagopalan is Professor in International Politics, School of International
Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.
Gurmeet Kanwal, Sharpening the Arsenal: India's Evolving Nuclear
Deterrence Policy, (Noida, India,
Harper Collins), Pages: 272, Price: Rs. 599.00
GIRIJESH PANT: Prof. Girijesh Pant is a former Dean, School of International
Studies. JNU; Former Vice Chancellor, Doon University & GGD University
Gulshan Dietl, India and the Global Game of Gas Pipeline, (New York and London, Routledge, 2017), Price: Rs 695.00, Pages: 213
Published in Volume 12,
Vol 13, No. 2 Apr-Jun 2018
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"India in the Emerging Global Order:
The Next Decade"
India has always
played a global role since its independence. Inadequate economic development,
limited military capabilities, regional constraints posed by neighbouring
aggressors, and enormous domestic difficulties have not prevented India
from leading the Non-Aligned Movement, Group of 77, playing an active role
in the United Nations, and making its voice heard on all critical issues,
such as disarmament, North-South Dialogue, and various trade negotiations.
In other words, India
acted as a global player against all odds and obstructions. In the changed
circumstances of the post-Cold War era, the Non-Aligned Movement lost its
lustre and vigour, the North-South Dialogue got diluted, the Group of 77
remained just on paper, and the United Nations could play only a small role
in maintaining international security and peace in a unipolar world order.
As the unipolar world
order is now under tremendous stress with the relative decline of US
influence in world affairs, the considerable spread of Chinese influence
around the globe, the near collapse of the European Union as a unitary
actor in international politics, the rise and fall of ISIS in the Middle
East, and the new uncertainties in the Indo-Pacific region marked by
Chinese assertiveness and North Korean WMD proliferation, India has emerged
as a significant role player. Indeed, it could be said that it is on the
cusp of a major transition occurring in the global order.
Unlike in the recent
past, India is economically more robust, technologically more advanced, and
militarily more formidable. It has acquired recognition internationally as
a new global power. China today has monetary power, but India’s soft power
is unmatched. China shows no activism in containing terrorism, promoting
non-proliferation, combating drugs trafficking, and playing a leading role
to shape regional order anywhere in the world. At the same time, it appears
to be determined to challenge the US position anywhere and everywhere in
subtle and not-so-subtle ways. A sort of cold confrontation is on the rise
in US-China relations. On the other hand, Russia has shown guts, and has
acted fiercely to reassert its position as a global power. The rise of
Russia as an important player in Europe, Central Asia, and the Middle East
has irked the USA.
circumstances, India needs to think hard about charting out its diplomatic
and political course of action in order to play a constructive role on all
major global issues that directly or indirectly impact its interests.
What should India’s
role be in the coming decade? How should India balance its regional
preoccupations with global issues? What should be the extent of India’s
engagement in the other regions of the world? How should India manage its
relations with the other global powers? How should India deal with the
issues related to the global commons? How should India make itself more
secure? How should India make its economy well protected at the time of
rising economic nationalism? How should India handle the growing presence
of external actors in its immediate neighbourhood? What can India do to
become the dominant security provider in the Indian Ocean? What should be
the limits of India’s involvement in areas and issues that do not affect
its core interests?
KANWAL SIBAL: Former Foreign Secretary of India, Former
Ambassador to France and to Russia.
Needs to Position Itself in the New Technological Revolution
CHINTAMANI MAHAPATRA: Rector, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi,
and Professor for American Studies, School for International Studies,
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New
New Power in the Emerging Global Order
SANJAY SINGH: former Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs,
and, Former Ambassador of India to Iran.
Need to Show
Wisdom and Dexterity to Traverse Turbulences
ARVIND GUPTA: Director, Vivekananda International Foundation,
Former Deputy National Security Advisor, Former Director General, IDSA
Need of a Strategy to Position itself in the Emerging Global Order
B. S. PRAKASH: former Ambassador of India to Brazil and to
Uganda and a former Consul General of India at San Francisco, USA.
“Great Power”: Assertion or Aspiration?
SACHIN CHATURVEDI: Director General at the Research and Information
System for Developing Countries (RIS), a New Delhi
Approach to Multilateralism and Evolving Global Order
M. MATHESWARAN: Air Marshall M. Matheshwaran
(Retd) is a Former Deputy Chief of the
Integrated Defence Staff.
Nuclear Stability in Asia and South Asia: Dynamics
of Fragile Stability
technology and development have moved at significant pace in Asia over the last
year and a half. Missile and weapon tests over the last year have brought
the non-proliferation lobby to actively raise the alarm on the spectre of a
nuclear arms race unfolding in South Asia. The year of 2017 seems to have
got the world's attention on the state of a fragile stability in South Asia
However, while the
danger of a nuclear arms race in South Asia must not be ignored, it is
important to remember that the South Asian nuclear scenario is far more
complex. Very often the focus tends to be on India-Pakistan
conflict/relations, which is deeply flawed. Nuclear deterrence stability in
South Asia depends on the stability of complex triangular nuclear
deterrence dynamics between India, China, and Pakistan. China has, until
now, played a very successful strategic game of deception wherein it
projects an image of a power that strongly articulates international
non-proliferation norms while commenting on India's missile tests or on
North Korea's missile and nuclear antics.
It is quite evident
that China's extended deterrence for both Pakistan and North Korea is a
critical component of its Asian nuclear strategy. Early in 2017, Pakistan
tested its MIRV (multiple independently targeted re-entry vehicles) on a
new land-based missile. This was preceded by the first successful test of
its 450 km range submarine launched cruise missile (SLCM). Both these
capabilities provide significant second and third strike capability to
Pakistan. But underlying these demonstrations is China's role in providing
active technological support to Pakistan's nuclear capability.
Pakistan has unveiled
its new strategy called "full spectrum deterrence", which
accentuates its first use policy with the use of tactical nuclear weapons
(TNW), backed by its second and third strike capability. India's
development of BMD is cited as the trigger for Pakistan's focus on MIRV and
SLCM. In reality, however, it is China's extended deterrence strategy that
is in play, where it seeks keep India bottled up with Pakistan on nuclear
A similar strategy is
evident in its use of North Korea against Japan and the USA.
India's recent Agni-V
test may be the beginning of an overt India-China nuclear deterrent
OBJA BORAH HAZARIKA: Dr. Obja Borah Hazarika is Assistant Professor, Department of
Political Science, Dibrugarh University, Assam.
Strategic and Political Trends in India and the
European Union: Confronting Common Challenges
India and the
European Union have a considerable stake in the future security and the economic
and diplomatic configuration of the international space. With rapid changes
ensuing in the international level on multiple fronts, India and the
European Union have an interest in directing the way in which emerging
trends are shaped. They are both considered major players in global
politics as they have significant clout in the diplomatic high-table of
international decision-making and agenda setting. They continue to face
daunting internal challenges which also impact their decisions at the international
level. Migration, ISIS, and Brexit are some of the current challenges which
the European Union grapples with, while India is faced with the Naxal
movement and secessionist tendencies, among other regional and
international issues. In the context of major structural level shifts
occurring at the international level, regional level challenges and
domestic upheavals, this essay attempts to explore the position of India
and the European Union amidst these major strategic mega-trends emerging at
the structural level, the major emerging political trends in both, and the
common challenges they are facing.
YOGENDRA KUMAR: Ambassador Yogendra
Kumar is a former Ambassador of India to the Philippines. He was, earlier
on the Faculty of the National Defence College, New Delhi.
MILAN 2018: Geo-Strategic and
... [I]ndian diplomacy, including its naval diplomacy, would
need to be proactive to crystallise all elements of the SAGAR construct
into an effective programme of action in bilateral and multilateral
formats. It would also have to be nuanced enough not to convey,
unwittingly, any impression that India might be fuelling a naval rivalry in
the IOR and, even, beyond. This author has formed the impression that some
countries in the littoral might be thinking that way even if their reasons
might not, actually, be what they state them to be. A closer analysis of
India’s actions would not bear that out, but a perception management task
lies ahead for Indian diplomacy.
In sum, a greater
balancing of India’s diplomacy in the current geostrategic and
geo-political context remains its essential desideratum. The MILAN series,
of which the latest edition was MILAN 2018, has great potential as an
instrument of ‘soft power’ in the Indian efforts for norm setting for the
Indian Ocean, which is becoming increasingly critical for our peace as well
as economic and technological progress.
ERIC GONSALVES: Ambassador Eric Gonsalves
is a Former Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs and a Former Ambassador
to Japan and to Belgium
Tansen Sen, India, China, and the World: A Connected History, (Maryland, United States, 2017, Rowman &
Littlefield), ), Pages: 560 (HC), Price: Rs. 2,985.00
Vol 13, No. 3 Jul-Sep 2018
Click Here to Download Full Issue
MONISH TOURANGBAM: Dr. Monish Tourangbam, is Assistant Professor (Senior Scale) at the
Department of Geopolitics and International Relations, Manipal Academy of
Higher Education (MAHE) based in Karnataka, India.
India-Iran Relations amidst Strategic Constraints
relationship between India and Iran is quite apparent. Iran possesses some
of the largest reserves of oil and natural gas in the world and India, as
one of the fastest growing economies in the world, needs uninterrupted
access to energy supplies to sustain its growth rate. Also, Iran occupies a
significant geopolitical space in terms of India’s aspiration to reach out
to its west beyond its immediate neighbourhood, into Central and West Asia.
There are many suitors for Iran’s role as a major player in the West Asian
region, including India’s primary competitor, China. Thus, in the interest
of constraining China’s ability to extend its influence further into West
Asia, it might be prudent for Washington to understand India’s rationale in
building a stable relationship with Iran. Sanctions in US foreign policy
have become a sort of a standard operating procedure that is slapped on any
country that, in a standard fashion, does not toe America’s line of
thinking and action. The India-Iran relationship is significant from a multi-faceted
point of view. Despite strategic constraints, the most significant of which
has been the ups and downs of US-Iran relations, India has maintained its
pragmatic streak of foreign policy, with the aim of widening its foreign
policy options and choices. It will be worthwhile to note that India has
never had any fundamental conflict of interest with Iran and, for a number
of reasons, beyond just access to oil and gas. Iran is likely to remain a
priority in India’s strategic calculations. A sober assessment of this
reality by the USA will well not only augur well for India-Iran relations
and India-US relations but also has the potential to open communication
channels between Washington and Tehran through New Delhi.
V. P. HARAN: Ambassador V. P. Haran is a former Ambassador of
India to Syria and to Bhutan
Regional Cooperation in South Asia
Should India take the
lead in these regional organisations? Beyond a point it would be
counterproductive because there is so much lack of trust and suspicion
among some members about India’s intentions. Some find India’s size
intimidating. Trust needs to be built up patiently and, over a period of
time. In the meantime, India should do whatever is possible from its side.
This is not to suggest abandoning of our responsibility and leaving the
pace of progress to be determined by Pakistan’s whims. Other available
options should be explored.
We can strengthen
cooperation through other regional organisations that have responsibilities
in the same areas as SAARC. For example, the subject of trade is dealt with
by 3 of the 4 sub-regional organisations ... .... The subjects of energy
and connectivity, including transport and border infrastructure, are dealt
with by all the 4 organisations. Wherever possible, we should move forward
with our partners in these organisations, where the Pakistan factor is
absent. SASEC has been doing commendable work. BBIN offers great potential
in the energy and water sectors and can deliver concrete results in the
medium term. BIMSTEC can be a useful forum for furthering connectivity, in
collaboration with SASEC, and also focus on trade and investment. Progress
in these areas would win the support of the people for regional
cooperation, and perhaps act as a catalyst for progress in SAARC as well.
VIVEK MISHRA: Dr. Vivek Mishra is Assistant Professor in International
Relations, Netaji Institute for Asian Studies,
Ties: Carving the Path to Normalcy
In the past few years, India-Maldives ties have,
quintessentially, come to symbolize the dilemma that India faces in its
maritime neighbourhood: the difficulty of balancing its
intrusive-accommodative dilemmas vis-ŕ-vis its relationship with smaller
regional powers. This dilemma has been further heightened with increasing
Chinese presence in the IOR, and its motivated economic assistance to
smaller countries of the region. The regional perception that India, as the
biggest and most powerful regional country, has conducted itself in a
top-down fashion for a long time has harmed its image. With resource
mobilization in these smaller regional countries (primarily through Chinese
assistance), their improving economy, a growing sense of the need to
conduct an independent foreign policy, and respect for sovereignty among
these countries, a turnaround in India’s foreign policy towards these
countries seems to have begun. Maldives locates itself in this ongoing
diplomatic transition where a regional heavyweight, India, is accommodating
itself to the changing geopolitical circumstances around it, and is trying
to help smaller neighbours resolve their problems as much as practicable.
All aspiring great powers have factored accommodation in their relations
with smaller nations. India-Maldives ties appear to be one such transitory
phase in Indian diplomacy.
BHASWATI MUKHERJEE: Ambassador
Bhaswati Mukherjee is a
former Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Paris, and a former Ambassador
of India to the Netherlands.
Policy: Lessons from Brexit and other Related Issues
India is now at the forefront of global political
dialogue and discussions. Many of its new global priorities, including
Security Council reform, climate change, and global warming as well as the
International Solar Alliance (ISA), coincide with the priorities of other
strategic partners like the EU. The Solar Alliance, now a group of over 120
nations, once in place, would contribute to India’s power projection in the
What are India’s foreign policy options in such a
challenging international scenario? Is there a way forward? Is the problem
ideological? India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, was of the
view that India should stay away from ‘alliances’ and ‘arrangements’. Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh took this a step forward when he said: "India
is too large a country to be boxed into any alliance or regional or sub
regional arrangements, whether trade, economic or political.” While India
may indeed continue to shy away from "alliances,” she has to
acknowledge that India has become part of a rapidly increasing number of
‘arrangements’ of differing purpose, cohesiveness, and geographic
extension. Each arrangement comes with obligations that impact India’s
foreign policy options. India may need to rethink its position on
alliances. In fact, it has already done so in its partnership with the USA.
India needs to effectively demonstrate its
emerging great power status to its strategic partners who are now anxious
to reach out and consolidate a potentially dynamic partnership. If
successful, it could alter fundamentally the geopolitics of this
SHUBHRAJEET KONWER: Dr. Shubhrajeet Konwer, is an
Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Gauhati
University, Guwahati, Assam
Hallmarks of Current Indian Foreign Policy
factors that cause changes in the foreign policy of a country is rather
contentious for they will invariably be linked with both systemic factors
as well as international and domestic politics. The end of the Cold War
meant that India needed to strengthen existing partnerships as well as look
for new strategic partners; at the same time, it had to take measures to
overcome its financial difficulties. The change of the political regime in
India in 2014 has not drastically altered India’s position on various
issues, but strategic commentators and analysts suggest that the
commencement of the present regime in 2014 has led to a new found
‘robustness’ in Indian foreign policy wherein ‘pragmatism, not principle,
and delivery, not doctrine’ are the
hallmarks - both lacking in the last two decades. However, the bigger issue
is whether this is strong enough to
overcome the challenges emanating from India’s neighbourhood, as well as
withstand pressures from the ‘super’ as well as other global powers.
TITLI BASU: Dr. Titli Basu is Associate Fellow at the Institute for Defence
Studies and Analyses, New Delhi.
India-Japan Vision 2025: Deciphering the
Minister Shinzo Abe’s strategic pursuit of a Free and Open Indo-Pacific, anchored
in his conceptualisation of the ‘Confluence of the Two Seas' and founded on
the principles of universal values and norms, has created space for India
in Japan’s grand strategy. India has been identified as a key variable in
the geopolitical churning that is shaping the Indo-Pacific discourse, both
in Japan and the USA. However, as policy positions are articulated by
respective leaders, ambiguities around the Indo-Pacific puzzle demand more
clarity. While President Trump and Prime Minister Abe are aligned in terms
of pursuing the Indo-Pacific strategy - with the objective of managing the
US-led strategic order amidst Chinese attempts in claiming equity in
international affairs with alternative ideas, institutions, and
infrastructure - Prime Minister Modi has articulated India’s Indo-Pacific
vision as a free, open and ‘inclusive region, including all countries in
the geography as also others beyond who have a stake in it’. Although there are certain gaps in each
country’s nuanced interpretation of the Indo-Pacific construct, a few
common elements define the India-Japan ‘winning combination’ in the
Indo-Pacific, such as upholding ASEAN centrality; the objective of securing
strategic stability and economic prosperity based on the pillars of shared
universal norms and values; facilitating infrastructure and connectivity
between the sub-regions, including Bay of Bengal, the Mekong region, and
the Indian Ocean for better economic integration and leveraging regional
production networks and value chains; and securing maritime global commons
by strengthening security cooperation with like-minded partners.
B. S. PRAKASH: former Ambassador of India to Brazil and to Uganda and a former
Consul General of India at San Francisco, USA.
Ayres, Our Time Has Come: How India is Making Its Place in the World, (New
Delhi, Oxford University Press, 2018), Pages: 360, Price: 695.00
GUNJAN SINGH: Gunjan Singh is a Research Associate at the Institute of Chinese Studies,
Bertil Lintner, China’s India War: Collision Course on the Roof of
Oxford University Press, 2017), Pages: 348 (HC), Price: Rs. 675.00
RANJAN TAYAL: Former Ambassador of India to Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea;
Former Consul General of India in Johannesburg and Houston
Zorawar Daulet Singh, Power & Diplomacy: India's Foreign
Policies during the Cold War, (New Delhi, Oxford University Press, 2019),
Pages: xv + 399, Price: Rs. 845.00
Vol 13, No. 4 Oct-Dec 2018
Click Here to Download Full Issue
In the Context of Recent
Elections in Bangladesh
Welcoming the successful completion of the
eleventh Parliamentary elections in Bangladesh in December 2018, India
warmly congratulated the people of Bangladesh for "reaffirming their
faith in democracy, development and the vision of Bangabandhu Sheikh
Mujibur Rahman." Prime Minister Narendra Modi telephoned Prime
Minister Sheikh Hasina, and "expressed confidence that the partnership
between India and Bangladesh will continue to flourish under her
far-sighted leadership". He also reiterated "the priority India
attaches to Bangladesh as a neighbour, a close partner for regional
development, security and cooperation, and a central pillar in India’s
‘Neighbourhood First’ policy". Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina thanked Prime
Minister Modi for being "the first leader to call her following her
election victory. She thanked India’s cooperative role in the development
pursuit of Bangladesh."
Parliamentary elections in Bangladesh took place
in Bangladesh on December 30, 2018. Unlike the previous election in 2014,
all major political parties participated. Some observers, specially the
opposition parties, criticised the conduct of the elections, and described
the results as 'tainted'. The elections resulted in a 'land slide' victory
for the Awami League, the ruling party led by Sheikh Hasina.
Unlike in the previous elections, India was not a
major factor. India itself maintained a non-partisan attitude throughout
the election period. The rhetoric from the Bangladeshi opposition, which
used to be clearly 'anti-India', remained subdued this time.
India-Bangladesh relations have reached new
heights in the last ten years. There have been various new partnerships and
developmental projects between the two countries. The continuation of the
Hasina government bodes well for the future of these relations.
What does Hasina’s third term mean for India? How
will the domestic political situation in Bangladesh evolve? And, what would
be its likely fallout on its relations with India? How will Bangladesh's
deft balancing of its relations with India as well as with other regional
and international players likely to play out in the near future? There have
been the usual implementation issues in various cooperative and
developmental projects as well as legitimate concerns. How should India
address these concerns?
The Journal had earlier
published three debates on India–Bangladesh Relations, in December 2011,
December 2013 and September 2015, (Issue Numbers 6.4, 8.4 and 10.3
respectively) which are available at:
Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty ia a former Secretary in the
Ministry of External Affairs and a former High Commissioner of India to
Bangladesh, and Ambassador of India to Thailand. He is currently a
Distinguished Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi
Bangladesh-India Ties Poised For a
ASHISH SHUKLA: Dr. Ashish Shukla is a Research Fellow, Indian Council of World Affairs, New Delhi.
Fourth Term: Implications for Indo-Bangladesh Relations
ANAND KUMAR: Dr. Anand Kumar is an Associate Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses,
New Delhi, and is presently on deputation
as Visiting Professor to ICCR chair of Indian Studies at the University of
The Opposition in Bangladesh: Would need to
reinvent its Politics
SREERADHA DATTA: Dr. Sreeradha Dutta is a former Director, Maulana Abul
Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Kolkata,
and presently a Senior Fellow at the Vivekananda International Foundation, New
India-Bangladesh Relations: Engaging a Dynamic
APARUPA BHATTACHERJEE: Ms. Aparupa Bhattacherjee is a Research Associate, School of
Conflict and Security Studies, National Institute of Advanced Studies
India-Bangladesh Relations: Past Cannot be Taken
Dr. Joyeeta Bhattacharjee is a Senior Fellow at the Observer Research
Foundation, New Delhi.
Relations to Deepen During Hasina’s Third Term
SMRUTI S PATTANAIK: Dr. Smruti S Pattanaik is a Research Fellow at the
Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi.
Ties: Smooth Sailing on the Bilateral Front
SHREYA UPADHYAY: Dr. Shreya Upadhyay is a Bengaluru based independent consultant. A
former Nehru-Fulbright pre-doctoral scholar with American University, Washington
DC, she was also a researcher with the Institute of Peace and Conflict
Studies, New Delhi.
Response to Disasters and Humanitarian Assistance in South Asia
KUMAR MUKERJI: Ambassador Asoke Kumar Mukerji
was, till recently Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations.
The Impact of Multilateralism on India
BHASWATI MUKHERJEE: Former
Permanent Representative of India to UNESCO, Paris, and former Ambassador
of India to the Netherlands.
Hardeep Singh Puri,
Delusional Politics, (New Delhi, Penguin Viking, 2019),
Pages: 304, Price: Rs. 360.00
Fellow, Indian Council of World Affairs, New Delhi.
Sumit Ganguly, Indian Foreign Policy (Oxford India Short
Introductions Series) (New Delhi, Oxford India, 2019), Pages: 206, Price: Rs. 325.00
KANWAL SIBAL: Former
Foreign Secretary of India, Former Ambassador to France and to Russia.
Bhaswati Mukherjee, India and EU: An Insider's View, (New
Delhi, ICWA / VIJ Books (India),
2018), Pages: 358 pages, Price: Rs. 746.00