Central Asia

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  • Manu Dev Jain asked: What is the importance of each of the five Central Asian countries for India?

    Rajorshi Roy replies: India and Central Asian Republics (CARs) - Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan - share deep civilisational ties. However, the importance of Central Asia for India is not merely cultural and historical. Being at the centre of the vast Eurasian land mass, one can always refer to Mackinder’s ‘Heartland Theory’ that dwelt upon the geopolitical importance of the Eurasian heartland, bounded by Volga in the west and Yangtze River in the east, and the Himalayas in the south and the Arctic Ocean in the north.

    Iran: India's Gateway to Central Asia

    Most of the discourses on India–Iran relations are either focused on cultural and civilisational links with Iran or its relevance as an energy-rich nation. Its transit potential in providing India with access to Central Asia has not received adequate attention.

    November 2012

    Mayank asked: What is the geo-strategic significance of Central Asian region for India?

    Meena Singh Roy replies: The geo-strategic significance of the Central Asian region for India needs to be viewed in the following context:

    Strategic location of the region - Countries of this region share borders with China, Afghanistan, Russia and Iran. Tajikistan is located in proximity to the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. This region is seen as a Eurasian bridge, connecting countries of Asia to Europe.

    New regional security dynamics - Developments which are still unfolding in and around Central Asia, particularly in Afghanistan and Pakistan; the proposed withdrawal of Western forces from Afghanistan by 2014 and its regional implications; and the increasing problem of drug trafficking in the region. All these developments have direct security implications for India.

    India’s growing energy demands and its energy security policy.

    India’s new Connect Central Asia policy and its effort to enhance economic cooperation with all the Central Asian republics.

    Securing Central Asian Frontiers: Institutionalisation of Borders and Inter-state Relations

    This article develops the message that the artificially introduced administrative borders during the Soviet era, which were subject to the processes of re-delimitation after 1991, whether for reasons of security, administration, mutual distrust or the population's ethnic attachment, have become results and means of political manipulation and pressurisation. This has resulted in further pushing regional states to follow mutually exclusive policies.

    July 2012

    Harsha AH asked: What is the significance of Central Asian countries for India?

    Meena Singh Roy replies: Today, the importance of Central Asia for India is not merely civilisational and historical; it goes much beyond this. Central Asia serves as a land bridge between Asia and Europe, and is rich in natural resources. It is thus geopolitically axial and economically offers whole range of opportunities. Both India and Central Asian Republics (CARs) share many commonalities and perceptions on various regional and world issues. There is enormous scope for pragmatic and profitable engagement between the two. The importance of CARs also lies in ensuring peace and stability in the region. However, India’s major limitation in this strategically important region is geographic non-accessibility. India does not share border with the CARs.

    The United States in Central Asia: Reassessing a Challenging Partnership

    This article focuses on the evolving place of the US in the Central Asian arena, analysing how US interests have changed in this region since the 1990s. It studies how strategic relations were transformed around the NATO Partnership for Peace, the growing cooperation in the Caspian Sea, and the building of a regional security architecture surrounding Afghanistan. It also analyses Washington's difficulties in promoting 'civil society' and the limits of the US economic engagement in the region.

    May 2011

    Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Visit to Kazakhstan

    Dr. Singh’s visit has led to a major thrust on cooperation in the energy sector including hydrocarbons and nuclear energy.

    April 27, 2011

    India, Buddhism and Geopolitics in Central Asia: Regaining Centrality

    Proposal to Establish The Takshila University for the Study of Indo-Central Asia Culture to Promote World Peace in the 21st Century

    June 25, 2010

    Geopolitical Stipulation of Central Asian Integration

    The overall post-Soviet and post-Cold War transformation of the five Central Asian countries is multifaceted and complicated. New geopolitics has penetrated into almost all critically important spheres of post-Soviet transformation. Geopolitics even influences spheres such as national self-identification, which is traditionally regarded as having nothing to do with geopolitics. That is why one can assume that geopolitics stipulates regional integration as well.

    January 2010

    Central Asia and India’s Security

    The paper attempts to analyse the issues in Central Asia in the context of India’s security. The paper poses a question as to what the region of Central Asia means for India today. The author argues that international attention is being focused on redefining the importance of Central Asian in the changing regional and international context. Since its reappearance, many suitors have been seeking affinity, proximity and legitimacy with the region on political, strategic, cultural and economic grounds.

    January 2004