Founding Member of NAM, Against Colonialism and Racism and Economic Significance

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Founding Member of NAM

After the end of Cold War, our FP has been focused on strengthening the Movement by redefining its priorities in keeping with the changing times

Against Colonialism and Racism

  • India’s independence itself played the role of catalyst in liberation of other countries

  • India was the first country to raise the question of racial discrimination in SA in 1946

  • Bandung Conference gave specific call for a “common policy against imperialism and colonialism in all its manifestations”

  • AFRICA (Action for Resistance to Invasion, Colonialism and Apartheid) Fund set up at India’s initiative at the 8th NAM summit

  • These policies brought India closer to the African countries

Advocacy of general and complete disarmament, especially nuclear disarmament

  • India was a member of the Six-Nation Five-Continent joint initiative in 1980s to highlight concern about the unprecedented nuclear arms race

  • Opposed discriminatory treaties as the NPT and CTBT

UN

  • Founding member

  • Made significant contributions to its various activities

  • Participant in peace-keeping operations in Korea, Egypt, Congo and earlier in Somalia, Angola, Rwanda

  • Played an active role in the deliberations of the UN on the creation of a more equitable international economic order

  • Active member of G-77 and G-15, G-4.

Challenges Before India’S FP Now

  • Neighbourhood Policy

  • Nuclear Policy

  • Climate change

  • Maritime security

  • Terrorism

  • Economic stability

  • Equity in bodies like UN, IMF and WTO

These are elaborated either below or elsewhere.

Maritime Dimension of India’S FP

Significance of Oceans

  • Peninsular India has a long coastline

  • Oceans in India have moulded and set the course of the history of the people who inhabit it

  • The ocean also brought traders and colonizers.

  • Nehru had said: “We cannot afford to be weak at sea. History has shown that whoever controls the Indian Ocean has, in the first instance, India’s sea-borne trade at her mercy and, in the second, India’s very independence itself”.

India is Naturally a Maritime Nation

  • Coastline of over 7500 kms

  • Lakshadweep and Andaman & Nicobar chains

  • Our EEZ is more than 2.5 mn sq. Kms

  • Our bonds with the Indian Ocean are not merely geographical but of deeper civilizations significance

Economic Significance

  • In absence of good regional land connectivity, the bulk of our trade is seaborne

  • 77% of our trade by value and over 90% by volume is carried by sea.

Maritime Dimension Essential for Our Energy Security

India’s oil consumption is expected to rise to 245 mn tonnes annually by 2020

Maritime Security

  • Sea-borne terrorist attacks of 26/11

  • Due to above reasons our foreign policy has to focus on these critical aspects of our national development and security.

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