BJP Initiates ‘Foreign Policy Dialogue’
The foreign Affairs Department of BJP initiated its first interaction session of the “Foreign Policy Dialogue” on 17th December 2022, where Shri S Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister of India was invited as a key speaker. Dr. S Jaishankar interacted with research scholars of international relations from Delhi University, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Jamia Milia Islamia and other premier institutions of India at the BJP Headquarters in Delhi. In the Opening remarks Dr. Vijay Chauthaiwale, In-Charge, Foreign Affairs Department of Bharatiya Janata Party, explained the idea and objective behind the “Foreign Policy Dialogue” which is to connect academia with the best resource persons available to discuss on the contemporary facets of global politics
In his address, Dr. S Jaishankar said “From history one big learning is that we have continuously underestimated dangers from the outside world and the Panipat syndrome which means that living in ignorance until the enemy has actually arrived at your gates should be changed.” He stressed on the need to understand the risks posed by the events that happen in other nations. He said “Like COVID which started in China impacted the entire world and the effects of Russia-Ukraine war in
Since 2014 India’s foreign policy has changed. Neighbourhood first policy started with swearing-in ceremony of PM Narendra Modi where he invited all the neighbouring countries to the ceremony, which was an unprecedented move in India’s diplomatic history
the form of inflation, Oil price hike and economic uncertainties, terrorism can also hit us any day, thus shouldn’t be ignored as it is happening in some other place.” He further stated that “Foreign policy is dependent on national unity. With each passing year relations between India and other nations is growing. Considering the world as a workplace, Indian participation in the global workplace is a big opportunity and also, Hon’ble PM Shri Narendra Modi is supporting manufacturing, promoting agriculture, supporting services and foreign investments to grow our exports.”
Reaching to the neighbourhood
• In the context of reaching to the neighbourhood he said since 2014 India’s foreign policy has changed. Neighbourhood first policy started with swearing-in ceremony of PM Shri Narendra Modi where he invited all the neighbouring countries to the ceremony, which was an unprecedented move in India’s diplomatic history.
• Earlier, when something bad happened, our neighbours used to look at the west, today, this region turns to India. During the Nepal earthquake, Yemen war, mudslides in Sri Lanka, Maldives water crisis and Mozambique cyclone, India has become the first responder.
World perceives India today
• While highlighting the change in the way the world perceives India today, he said “Earlier we were a back office, now we are leaders in pharmacy, innovation and research.
• Through initiatives like Vaccine Maitri and Yoga India’s image has changed.
• World has expectations and since we are a civilizational state, our personality, heritage and culture will matter.
• Under PM Shri Narendra Modi’s leadership diplomacy, security, military and intelligence are working together and have become stronger.
• Since 2014, the image we have, sense of purpose we have, the confidence we have and the way the rest of the world perceives us has changed.”
No act of terrorism should be cost free and India needs to find ways to get Pakistan move away from terrorism… He said that India has made difference in the lives of people of Afghanistan without dwelling into political agenda. We have sent them wheat, vaccines and we run a hospital in Kabul and we continue to supply medicine
In the later part of the discussion Dr. S Jaishankar addressed various questions posed by the participants.
• While answering the question related to India-China relations he said, “We need to accept reality that countries in international politics are fundamental units which compete with other countries. There are competitive aspects of relationship with China which was not realised in 1950’s.”
Indo-China border dispute
• Talking about the Indo-China border dispute he remarked that the main issue is that after 1950 we have had our borders directly connected with each other which were not mutually determined and thus created a conflict. The impact of the 1962 war is still creating conflicts as a major part of Indian Territory was taken by China.
• Secondly, China took economic reforms earlier than India especially in the field of manufacturing and technology. However, under the leadership of Hon’ble PM Shri Narendra Modi, government is focusing on transforming India into a manufacturing hub, technology and innovation leader.
Future of India’s foreign policy
• Discussing about the future of India’s foreign policy, he said that Atmanirbhar Bharat and Make in India are the key factors and building blocks that will shape the future of the nation. He described Indian market as our greatest power.
• Supporting small business and creating brand names, technological advancements and strengthening supply chains within the country will earn respect to us.
Pakistan and terrorism
• In the context of Pakistan and terrorism, he said that no act of terrorism should be cost free and India needs to find ways to get Pakistan move away from terrorism.
• While talking about Afghanistan he said that India has made difference in the lives of people of Afghanistan without dwelling into political agenda. We have sent them wheat, vaccines and we run a hospital in Kabul and we continue to supply medicine.
• There is a lot of desire in Afghanistan to have more participation by India. In case of China’s investment in Nepal he stated that Nepal is a common neighbour for both India and China. India cannot expect China to not invest in Nepal. Our challenge is to continuously prove that we are best partner for Nepal.
He concluded the discussion with an appeal to the participants that students should contribute with ideas to make India’s foreign policy more democratic and inclusive. The responsibility of making people aware of the importance of foreign policy lies on the youth of the country.
The detailed discussion was followed by a group photograph with Dr. S Jaishankar and the students were presented with a certificate of participation.