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India amidst challenging geopolitical situation

  • IASbaba
  • May 9, 2020
  • 0
UPSC Articles
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INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

Topic: General Studies 3:

  • India and its neighbourhood
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora. 

India amidst challenging geopolitical situation

Context:

Today, India is in the midst of a new geopolitical situation:

  • The world is moving in the direction of multi-polarity which may turn into a US-Chinese bipolar system in the long run.
  • The world faces a destabilising power transition as China seeks to demonstrate international power in a world so far dominated by the U.S. 
  • America First” attitude of the United States President has also caused rapid shifts in the balance of power. 
  • China-U.S. strategic contention is growing despite both countries being economically dependent on each other.
  • Indo-Pacific Region (IPR), including countries of Indonesia, South Korea and Vietnam, is   gradually turning into one of the world’s primary regions.

The geopolitical aspect of relations between India, China and the United States is thus becoming increasingly complex and multifaceted.

What should be India’s response in such a scenario?

  • The current Indian government has set itself ambitious, long-term goals aimed at strengthening the country’s international standing as a “serious global player.
  • To counter unstoppable growth of China, many experts advocate that India should enter into an alliance with the U.S. 
  • However, an alliance seems to be the wrong answer for India’s growth quests which may harm its development ambitions. 
  • Strategic autonomy has been the pursuit for India since many decades. Hence, this is the most opportune time for India to not get entangled in contention concerning other countries which might affect India’s national interests. 
  • India must follow diplomacy and flexibility, and adjust itself to the fast-changing balance of power and correlation of forces around it. 
  • The experts also believe that India can gain a full-fledged status of a great power only if it creates multilateral organizations independently that would safeguard its interests and express its values. 
  • India must develop a strategy of counterbalancing China.
  • India is already trying to counterbalance the USA by strengthening and diversifying ties with Russia.
  • Europe, though equally burdened by its own problems, could also play its part by recognizing and supporting India’s growth.
  • India’s investment needs are increasing like never before. Thus, India must come up with such a foreign policy that could lure investors from both China and the United States, without getting involved in their politics.
  • India should also retain for itself maximum freedom of maneuver and flexibility in international relations and uphold its claim to be the system-forming power of South Asia.
  • High-level strategic dialogue between these countries about their core interests, red differences and areas of convergence should take place. 

Way forward 

  • The world also knows that without India’s participation neither USA’s IPR project, nor Beijing’s “Community of Common Destiny” concept can be fully implemented. 
  • On the other hand, India may not become a developed country if it continues business and politics as usual, or tries to imitate China’s experience in the last 40 years.
  • It must adapt and manage its internal social and political situations better.  

Conclusion 

  • Today, India is more dependent on the outside world than ever before. 
  • It relies on the world for energy, technology, essential goods like fertilizer and coal, access to markets, and capital. 
  • Thus, the most important improvement that India needs to make involves its national security structures and their work.

Connecting the dots:

  • India – China relations are of global significance
  • India’s participation is significant for USA’s India-Pacific Region project 

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