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Rupak Kumar asked: Is there any structural change in India's foreign policy under the Modi Government?

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  • Rumel Dahiya replies: A country's foreign policy is guided by its national interests, which are more or less permanent. However, cataclysmic events or major reordering of international relations such as the demise of the Soviet Union do necessitate course correction in a country's foreign policy over a period of time. It is also an accepted fact that the domestic situation too influences foreign policy. Viewed in this context, there is little scope today for making structural changes in India's foreign policy with the change in the government. However, the nuances, the priorities and emphasis on certain aspects of the policy have undergone a change.

    There is an increased emphasis on economic engagement with all the countries since it is felt that the country's economic development will determine its place in the comity of nations. Strong economic performance will improve internal cohesion and enable higher spending on diplomacy and defence as well. In addition, there is greater emphasis on delivery mechanisms, greater degree of political engagement with neighbouring countries and major powers, and leveraging the inherent potential of the diaspora; both for enhancing bilateral relationship with the countries concerned and for attracting investments. Also, there is recognition that the states are also stakeholders in developing relations with the neighbouring countries.

    Posted on March 11, 2015