Political Science Answer Writing Practice - Week 8 - Question 1
90 Days Political Science Answer Writing Practice Question 1 for 22-Jan-2018
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22-Jan-2018 - Question 1
Identify the elements of change in India's foreign policy. 200 words 2013
A country's foreign policy consists of self-interest strategies chosen by the state to safeguard its national interests and to achieve its own goals through relations with other countries. The approaches are strategically employed to interact with other countries. India's Foreign Policy is not just to secure National Interest, but also to shape world order based on toleration, non-violence, cosmopolitanism. India's worldview has never been entirely realist, always there is a strong ideational element.
Arvind Virmani in his article "Recalibrating India s foreign policy" says that every country s foreign policy has elements of continuity and change following a change in government. The changes have not necessarily been explicitly articulated, but are implicit in the government s actions and view of the world. There are five areas of the emerging change according to Dr Virmani: The centrality given to economic and technological development; the orientation of domestic and foreign policies toward this objective; the emphasis on national power including military power; and stress on soft power; and a reduction in self-imposed constraints on actions that other countries may construe as inimical to their interests.
Hon. Foreign Secretary Dr S Jaishankar talks of five innovations in the way India was using the tools of statecraft to further this proactive foreign policy narratives; lexicon and imagery; soft power; the Indian diaspora; and the link between foreign policy and national development. First, the Modi government was developing a narrative as part of a transition to making India a leading power. Second, the creation of a new lexicon and imagery whether it is from a Look East to Act East policy or the image of a first responder in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief has been critical in signalling and driving foreign policy change. Third, the Modi government has emphasized the use of soft power in Indian foreign policy, as evidenced by the International Day of Yoga and its links with the country s culture and heritage. The fourth innovation is related to the Indian diaspora. While their achievements have long been broadly appreciated, the Modi government has been more direct thus far in engaging with overseas Indians, as evidenced by the turnout at Madison Square Garden during his visit to the United States earlier this year. Fifth and finally, there has also been a more explicit link made between diplomacy and national development efforts, with India working hard to leverage its international relationships to bring resources, technology and best practices to further its own development such as through the Make in India initiative.
However, as Teresita Schaffer in her book "India at the Global High Table" says that between Narendra Modi and J L Nehru, only ends have remained same but means have changed. Earlier Non-Alignment, 3rd world solidarity and soft power were the key essentials. Now strategic autonomy, alignment with USA and Russia, use of smart power has become the key pillars of India s foreign policy. The four concepts woven together throughout the book offer an exploration of India today: its exceptionalism; its nonalignment and drive for strategic autonomy; its determination to maintain regional primacy; and, more recently, its surging economy.
Amb. Jitendra Nath Misra in his lecture Continuity and change in India's Foreign Policy argues that India s foreign and security policies are enablers in the transformation of India is now well understood among thinking Indians. In that sense, by getting tied to domestic policy, which receives greater public attention, foreign policy has woven itself into the people s consciousness. India is being recast. Today India is at the centre of the international security architecture, and a key to the economic and technological debates of the age. By virtue of its economic growth, its world-class space programme, and its contributions from medicine to IT, India has become indispensable to global needs and a shaper of the world economy, not just as a market, but also as an engine of growth and ideas.
It would thus not be far-fetched to say that what India does will profoundly affect the future of the world. Terrorism is an example. With swathes of embittered humanity on the boil, terrorism is at the centre of international discourse. The world now speaks of 9/11 and 26/11 in the same breath, and, as a major victim, India becomes a natural partner in fighting terrorism. Similarly, on the emission of greenhouse gases and climate change, what India does affects the world. This is the foundation for India s new foreign policy.