It is continued portion of the previous blog in which we mentioned various factors that had effects on shaping India’s relations with western allied countries. This includes countries like US, UK, European Union, Australia, Japan, ASEAN group of countries etc. Here the term “allies” doesn’t only refers to formal defence alliance but also countries who toed their vehicle of development along with US bloc countries on the path of capitalism. Till now we had discussed factors which were deciding factors from independence to early 1970s. So continuing from there.
Civil Nuclear Test
India after tough decade of war (1962-1971), was again on path of development. India’s civil nuclear test (Pokhran 1) was a positive step towards it, making India a powerful country in the field of civil nuclear technology. But many countries interpreted it in a wrong way. US and it’s allies protested against it as they thought India is not going to stop here and will develop weapons grade nuclear technology. Seeing India’s closeness with USSR, and they always saw India as Soviet ally rather than a non aligned country. US and Canada stopped supplying heavy water(D2O) and other equipment necessary for civil nuclear energy development.
USSR again gave unconditional help to India, by supplying heavy water.
There were many other implications out of it. Those countries who were in our proximity saw it as a threat to their sovereignty, they thought if India will develop nuclear arms it will start dominating over them. But that was not the case, India has always been a responsible nation.
India-Sri Lanka relations – messages it sent to other capitalist allies in our proximity.
India- Sri Lanka relations has been always very complicated and various steps led negative implications out of it. Special mention will be of Rajiv-Jayawardene Agreement 1987. According to this agreement India sent peace keeping forces on Sri Lankan soil to handle the problem of LTTE. What were the negative effects of it? Those were
- India will involve in internal matters of other countries if it comes to their people. If Indian diaspora is unhappy in other weaker country , then India can send troops for their protection. The most feared out of it was ASEAN nations as they were in the proximity of India.
But it was not the case for India, we sent our peace keeping forces only after formal request from Sri Lankan government. Developed nations also saw it as a challenge to them i.e. not only they can enter other weaker nations but also a developing nation like India (it was their perspective).
End of Cold war and disintegration of USSR
As the cold war came to an end, the world became unipolar completely dominated by USA. Bloc politics also ended with it, hence cooperation with one country could not have posed threat to other. This was actual and free implementation of non-alignment that India always wanted. Western world also saw opportunities of business in India and this mutual agreement among the countries led to a good economic ties. It was also a break through point which decided India’s closeness with western countries.
Weapons grade nuclear test (Pokhran 2)
India facing twin security (China, Pakistan) in its neighbourhood saw nuclear arms as a way of creating minimum deterrence to war in the region. For this India tested 5 nuclear bombs in Pokhran test site. This step infuriated the US, Japan and other European countries. US and Japan formally applied sanctions over India for conducting nuclear weapon test. India again faced hard times as it’s two most important economic partners had applied sanctions on it. But PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee showed a strong character and gave 5 points assurance to the world which is of great significance. Those were
- No first use policy.
- Minimum credible deterrence.(to prevent war)
- To develop second strike capability with massive retaliation.( We will never strike first, but if we are attacked by nuclear weapon we will make sure there is no existence of attacking country)
- India will never promote nuclear proliferation.
- Self imposed moratorium on nuclear weapon testing.
These points assured western countries that India is a responsible state. And again cooperation among them started.
Kargil and exposing narratives of Pakistan
Pakistan has always tried to defame India, and many western countries followed the policy of Hyphenation (i.e. what Pakistan believes is what they believe). But after the loss of Pakistan in Kargil skirmish it exposed Pakistan’s fake narratives about India that India has always been aggressor in all wars. Many proofs proved that Pakistan was the aggressor not India. Hence, the image of India further improved in the eyes of western countries.
There were many further collaboration that improved India’s close ties with western countries.
- India-US nuclear deal.
- World accepting India as victim of state sponsored terrorism from Pakistan.
- Closeness of India and Japan
- India’s responsible behaviour with neighbouring countries.
- India-Japan close economic ties.
One thing that India has been suffering from since long time- “Middle Power Syndrome” we have always given priority in cooperation to developed nations like US, UK and other developed European countries, China, Russia, Japan etc. And in this course many developing countries were left untouched and that’s not the symbol of a being on the path of development. In recent years we have tried to look in this field also, like cooperation with Australia, Brazil, Middle-Eastern countries, developing countries of Europe and South America.
So this was the end of the blog. Hope you like it. Suggestions and corrections always whole heartedly welcomed…
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