Lone Warrior, Regional Actor or Global Player? Statecraft and Indian Foreign Policy in the 21st Century
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Institute of South Asian Studies, NUS, Singapore
Publication date: 2015-12-31
Stosunki Międzynarodowe – International Relations 2015;51(4):93-114
Thanks to a combination of high economic growth, steady integration into the international market economy, the emergence of globally competitive multinationals, and a vast enhancement of defence capacities, the international status of India has radically altered over the past decade. At home, India’s leaders increasingly speak of their country as a global player, even while recognising the constraints of being a low-income country with poor infrastructure and mass poverty. The regime change in India following the parliamentary elections of May 2014 has quickened the pace of these developments. Five major changes – the centrality given to economic and technological development, the orientation of domestic and foreign policies towards this objective, the emphasis on national power including military power, stress on soft power, and a reduction in self-imposed constraints on actions that other countries may construe as inimical to their interests – have been reported in the press. The paper responds to these issues through an analysis of the evolution of India’s foreign and security policy from the early days following independence when Jawaharlal Nehru gave it the stamp of his personality all the way to the multipolar world of the 21st century.
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