Home Blog Page 3

A Turkish Hypocrisy



Author:Anondeeta Chakraborty 


August 5, marked the one year anniversary of the revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370.The effect of the decision has been felt both in the domestic as well as the foreign affairs of India. It was a bit uncanny, that there had not been much criticism of this decision by other states, as was “expected” and “feared” by the leaders of the ruling Party (as other past events on Jammu and Kashmir have shown). On the contrary, it was branded as an internal matter of India and rightly under its sovereign jurisdiction. Such an international stance on this issue was not well received by our neighbour Pakistan, and it tried its best to culminate an international response against this. Needless to say, that failed but it did manage to solicit responses from China (which was expected) and Turkey (thanks to their budding bilateral relationship)
With Erdogan taking over the presidency in 2014, there has been a sea change in Turkey’s pursuance of its internal as well as foreign affairs. Erdogan is known for his conservative and populist policies. The conversion of Hagia Sophia back into a mosque or the state sponsorship of the Ertugrul drama series, to woo Islamic sentiments in Turkey as well as, all over the world, can well attest the statement. Under him, Turkey is turning away from the secularist way of governance as was laid down by Ataturk, and religion is taking precedence more than ever. This equation of the prevalence of a common religion is bringing Turkey and Pakistan closer, not to mention the efforts put by the two populist leaders to foster those sentiments in their respective population.
Erdogan has always been vocal about the rights of the Kashmiri population in India and has taken a negative stance about the revocation of Article 370. It has also shown unflinching support to Pakistan’s stance on Kashmir. Many a times, Erdogan has openly talked about the human rights violation in Kashmir. Even though his constant concern and vigilance about the “protection of human rights” is welcomed, it would be really appreciative, if he shows the same amount of responsibility, towards the Kurdish people and the people of Northern Cyprus, because “charity should begin at home”
It is not unknown to the world the grave injustices, Turkey had done and is still doing to its minority Kurdish population. A minority of historians have even gone to the extent of calling it a “genocide”, aimed at their total elimination. Since the republic was formed in 1923, Turkey has embarked upon “ingenious” ways to crush the Kurdish people; banning Kurdish names, folklores, attires and all other forms of cultural representation by 1978. In an attempt to deny their very existence, the government had kept on categorizing the Kurds as “Mountain Turks” until the 1980s.  Time and again, the Kurds have wanted to assert their right to self-determination, the Dersim and Ararat Rebellion would be the best to cite as examples. The Ararat rebellion culminated into Zilan Massacre; where about 5,000- 47,000 Kurds were killed mercilessly by the Turkish Army. Such state sponsored atrocities are still continuing to this day, and the Kurds are being denied of basic political and social rights in Turkey.
The situation is similar in Northern Cyprus as well, where Turkey has been accused of violation of several basic rights by the European Court of Human Rights, as per the European Convention of Human Rights, since its Invasion in 1974. This self-proclaimed territory of Northern Cyprus, recognized only by Turkey, has been seeing major disregards to international Human rights law, especially towards Greek Cypriots. The Turkish authority has constantly embarked on unjustified killings, police brutality and violence on this minority section. The Cyprus 2018 Human Rights Report by the US, shows an accurate picture of severe repression of basic human rights in Northern Cyprus. The European Court of Human Rights, again and again, in various rulings, has asked Turkey to address these burning issues, which has never been into serious consideration by the Republic. (Andreou V. Turkey,  Loizidou V. Turkey, etc.)
Although Erdogan’s deep concern to “safeguard human rights” in Kashmir is genuinely appreciated, but his primary focus should be elsewhere. While his own country has been the perpetrator of violence and injustice towards certain minorities, with no respect for basic human rights whatsoever; where religious orthodoxy, repression of female rights, radicalism has grappled the state once again…in such circumstances it is really not prudent of him to be commenting about the internal affairs of another state. He needs to hold on tightly to the loose reins of his own country first and can then embark upon his “duty” to salvage the  world population of injustice, because “those who live in glass houses should not throw stone at others”.

Economics of Cybersecurity

National security is often regarded as a conical public good. Are all members of society equally covered under this especially in the cyber realm? Security and defence experts claim that the Cyberworld could be the ‘5th Dimension’ of warfare. With the growing number of technological advances, some profit from misusing the technology for personal gain. Why do breaches happen when there are technological solutions to prevent them? Is the cost of providing said security more than a possible loss from breach of information?
You would think that tech companies and banking and financial institutions would not take risks while handling your personal information and other confidential information you divulge to them, however, the numbers may differ. Companies often compare the possible loss from a breach and the possibility of breach against the cost of having adequate security infrastructure. The risks associated with cyber-attacks are real and the reality has not reached all the sectors of society.
Any expert in the field of information security would argue that there is clear price discrimination in the availability of good security measures. Price discrimination is economically efficient but socially controversial. In the USA, banks are generally liable for the costs of card fraud; when a customer disputes a transaction, the bank must either show that she is trying to cheat or refund her money. In the UK, the banks had a much easier ride: they generally got away with claiming that the ATM system was ‘secure’, so a customer who complained must be mistaken or lying. “Lucky bankers,” you might think; yet UK banks spent more on security and suffered more fraud. How could this be? It appears to have been what economists call a moral-hazard effect: UK bank staff knew that customer complaint would not be taken seriously, so they became lazy and careless. This situation led to an avalanche of fraud.
The software industry tends toward dominant firms thanks to the benefits of interoperability. Economists call this a network externality or the law of large numbers: a network, or a community of software users, is more valuable to its members the larger it is. This not only helps explain the rise and dominance of operating systems, from System/360 through Windows to Symbian, and of music platforms such as iTunes; it also helps explain the typical pattern of security flaws. Put simply, while a platform vendor is building market dominance, he has to appeal to vendors of complementary products as well as to his direct customers; not only does this divert energy that might be spent on securing the platform, but security could get in the way by making life harder for the competitors. So platform vendors commonly ignore security in the beginning, as they are building their market position; later, once they have captured a lucrative market, they add excessive security to lock their customers in tightly.
Exposing and debating vulnerabilities can have damaging effects of its own but in a world of deep fakes and cyber phishing attacking even the most esteemed members of society, a debate is necessary. The erosion of personal data and a lack of privacy increases substantially with the rise in technology. Despite the existence of privacy-enhancing technology, it has surprisingly not hit the market place; economic thought suggests that it is because of wanting to charge different prices for similar services. Privacy reduces the chance of price discrimination.
We have discussed how many information security failures are caused by incentive failures, for example where the people who guard a system aren’t the people who suffer when it fails. Externalities make many security problems somewhat like environmental pollution; some aspects of information security are public goods, like clean air and water. Externalities also play a key role in determining which security products succeed in the market, and which fail. We started the discussion with the understanding that national security is a public good. Now we acknowledge how skewed that benefit truly is. In this piece, I hoped to expose some security risks that can be mitigated by applying the basic principles of economics.

By – Neha Ramesh

Using Realist Approach To Understand And Resolve COVID-19 As A Security Problem


Author: Riya Raj
Research Coordinator, GCTC
Areas of interest: Security studies, Human security, Human rights, International relations, 21st-century challenges(poverty, hunger, development, environmental issues), Public policy.
Security has different meanings for different people all around the world. Most scholars in International Relations agree to define it as the alleviation of threats to cherished values vital for survival of the referent object. Some of the major security problems in contemporary times are Terrorism, civil war, humanitarian crisis, environmental/climate change problems, cyber-crimes, international trade war, domestic extremism (Maoist, Naxals), poverty and development, weapons of mass destruction, transnational criminal activities, energy security, global health security, etc. War and threat of violence are only a part of security studies known as strategic studies.
COVID-19 pandemic, HIV/AIDS, Influenza H1N1 and SARS are a few examples of diseases, global health security issue that have the potential to threaten the physical integrity and national security of a state. Stephen Walt’s “The Realist’s Guide to the Coronavirus Outbreak,” is a compelling example to prove the relevance of realist approach in the international relations of contemporary times. Responses by nations have demonstrated the primacy of sovereign states, rationale for great-power competition and obstacles to international cooperation, ineffectiveness of international organizations—all key features of the realist school of thought.
Some of the major ways in which COVID-19 has threatened the national security of states are:

  • It has caused 43,17,445 deaths all over the world till now. Strained global public health, nations’ workforce, political instability, economic recession, class strife. Education is a major component of human security and the shutting down of education sector due to COVID-19 has adversely affected learning and human interaction which are essential for social and behavioral growth. It has led to increase in child labor, child marriage, domestic violence, depression, poverty, unemployment, under-nutrition, lack in food security.
  • Conspiracy theories. Assumed to be a biological warfare/ bio-terrorism- dangerous consequences.
  • Covid-19 has proved to be devastating for migrants and vulnerable refugee from countries struggling with conflicts.
  • Violent extremists leave no opportunity to exploit public fears. False information related to the spread of Covid-19 is being intensely circulated to incite violence, frighten targets, and promote selfish ideologies. Challenges faced by Left-Wing or Right-Wing infested nations are increasing. Example- India struggles with Maoist attacks.
  • Cyber terrorism- a major security threat in contemporary times. Online activities were an opportunity to damage states and people. They attempt to steal money, rob sensitive private information of patients from hospitals, attack research centers for information relating to the vaccine for COVID-19, encrypt sensitive data which they could sell in black market demanding huge ransoms, or even simply to put others at a disadvantage.

Realist approach explains the events during Covid-19 most appropriately. Most nations have turned inward, enforced travel and entry bans, export controls, hoarding or obscuring information, border closures and quarantines to control and limit Covid-19. During this constricted international order nations are doing their best to find the cure or vaccine with a unilateral approach. Kenneth Waltz wrote in his ‘Theory of International Politics’, the domestic imperative is ‘specialize’ and the international imperative is ‘take care of yourself’.
I strongly believe that in the self-help anarchy, the dominant response to Covid-19 is self-preservation. Those countries that are powerful enough or lucky enough to produce COVID-19 vaccines and antivirals will probably help themselves first, even if the need elsewhere is greater. Role of leaders, rational domestic policies, updated health facilities, proper measures, decision making are some of the factors which will help a nation contain the virus. This explains why some countries like New Zealand, Iceland, Tanzania, Fiji, Montenegro, Vatican City, Seychelles, Mauritius, and Papua New Guinea have controlled COVID-19 more appropriately than others. Global efforts do play a role, but Sovereign states remain the central political actors in the contemporary world. Neo-classical realism states that the states response to pressures at international level is influenced highly by their domestic conditions. The responses to COVID-19 are exposing the strengths and weakness of different types of regimes (authoritarian v/s democratic).
Self-preservation rather than co-operation. For example- Italy was struggling to fight against the virus, its request for support was highly ignored and unattended by the European leaders. Ashley J. Tellis, in an essay to The National Bureau of Asian Research, elaborates how President Trump compelled India to export hydroxychloroquine to the United States under pressure, despite the drug being of dubious effectiveness against the Coronavirus.
Structural Realism argues that due to globalization, there is increase in interdependence among nations- results in increase in probability of peaceful co-operation as well as of violent conflicts. States are rational actors who know when to co-operate and when to compete. Sovereign states are ready to co-operate to tackle issues like terrorism and environmental problems.
But Covid-19 is giving rise to xenophobia. Even during a pandemic, great powers decide to compete rather than co-operate. Therefore, conspiracy theories against each other are spread. The most dominant conspiracy theory is by U.S AND CHINA against each other. The balance of power theory of Realism explains these relations where China wants to get upgraded as a great power and America wants to preserve its tag of global hegemony. They both are trying their best to attract allies and maximize their power. The deadly virus may prove to be a reason why state borders will become higher than before because rather than co-operating to find a vaccine, the nations are competing for relative gains. This relationship between U.S and China during the pandemic is best explained by Great Power Populism- how trusting in a vague international community to guarantee national security and prosperity is a risky option. GPP is driven by revisiting, revising, reforming or revolutionizing the international system with the emphasis on zero-sum “grabbing your fair share,” and not really trying to cooperate on any issues, but trying to maximize benefits for yourself, your regime, your country, your system or your government. Countries tend to believe that they will absorb the damage of the pandemic and recover faster and quicker than others, that the pandemic will weaken their rivals and may even bring them down, that they can take advantage of the chaos and confusion to change the proverbial facts on the ground and improve their geopolitical and geo-economic positioning.
Another major conspiracy theory involves U.S and Iran blaming each other for the virus. And U.S denys to providing any relief over its sanctions or any other aid.
Realism doubts their role in dealings with global security problems and has long-before predicted the false premises of international institutions (John Mearsheimer in 1994). They are believed to be dominated by the strong powers for selfish national interests. WHO is too weak to do anything other than that what is dictated to it by the powerful nations. Gian Luca Burci said- the COVID-19 pandemic has once again shown that international organizations are ideal scapegoats. Nations have marginalized and criticized international organizations because- WHO’s delay in recognizing the deadly covid-19 and alerting the nations, inaction by Security Council, lack of solidarity by the European Union. WHO received backlash from U.S for failing in its ‘basic duty’, which also led to the cutting of funds it received from U.S. WHO lacks the material power required to have much independent, effective response to COVID-19 or any other health emergency. But U.S. fails to identify relevant primary obligations that would have been violated by the organization because of the lack of legal obligation on international institutions, which accounts for their ineffectiveness. The G-20, and the United Nations can hardly organize a unified response.

  • Realism explains that achieving effective international cooperation to fight COVID-19 is not an easy task. But states should together rise above the idea of relative gains and should co-operate with each other to find the vaccine to such a deadly virus which is a major threat to the entire human race.
  • Countries should take it as a threshold where they need to focus on mutual benefits by combining their intelligence and resources, work as a team, united approach to research for a vaccine and eradicating the virus because closing borders will be mutually disadvantageous to all in the long run.
  • Realism also suggests that in this competitive self -help world, states cast a wary eye on what others are doing and have a big incentive to imitate success, they will try to do their best to contain the virus. One effective response will be followed by many other nations, and they will be able to finally find the best solution globally.
  • States should strengthen their health facilities and use strategies to receive help from neighbors, share science and technology developments to mutually benefit each other.
  • This is a major global health security issue which if not approached from a communitarian realist view will lead to unreversible damages.

Realism has questioned the relevance of power notions of global politics like super-power and globalization. Failure to manage and mitigate at this stage will have a long-term impact on international peace, stability, and security. Inability to contain the deadly virus may force Nations to withdraw themselves from the international community and formulate isolationist policies. As the Coronavirus pandemic escalates, the task of rethinking the political, economic, diplomatic, and strategic fundamentals of a more coherent approach to the national security becomes more urgent than ever. Idea of absolute gains should be preferred over relative gains. The entire world needs to work as a team with a united approach and from a communitarian realist view. Coronavirus is a threat to human race but also offers an opportunity for cease-fires between combatants, for peace between enemies, for cooperation across and within borders, and for building trust where there may be none. Domestic security, international politics, and economic preferences need to adapt holistically to the emerging landscape of complex security threats.

India-Nepal Military Relations-A History Perspective

Around the middle of the eighteenth century, the Himalayan region between the Teesta River in the east and the Satluj River in the west was under the control of a large number of independent principalities.[1] It is possible to count at least sixty such principalities, although a complete, authentic list is not yet available. The eastern section of the Himalayan region was less fragmented than the western. It was comprised of two small states, Sikkim and Bhutan, which were dissected by numerous rivers, including the Teesta. The territories west of Sikkim, up to the Dudhkosi river, a tributary of the Kosi, were divided into the three comparatively large principalities of Vijayapur, Chaudandi and Makwanpur. These principalities controlled extensive agricultural and forest areas in the Tarai, comprising the modem districts of Jhapa, Morang, Sunsari, Saptari, Siraha, Dhanusha, Mahottari, Bara, Parsa and Rautahat, while the borders of Vijayapur and Chaudandi also touched Tibet in the north.[2]
The valley of Kathmandu was the centre of three independent states, namely, Kathmandu, Patan and Bhadgaun.[3] These states also owned territories in the hill areas of the Trishuli river, a tributary of the Gandaki river in the west, and the Dudhkosi in the east. The boundaries of both Kathmandu and Bhadgaun touched Tibet in the north, while in the east they included parts of the modern districts of Kabhrepalanchok, Sindhupalchok and Dolakha.[4] In the west, Nuwakot and Dhading belonged to Kathmandu and Patan respectively. Patan’s disadvantage in not having a direct link with Tibet was compensated by its proximity to the Bhirnphedi-Hitaura route leading to the southern plains through the Kingdom of Makwanpur. The valley was of great importance from the economic point of view, for it accommodated important trade routes connecting northern India with central Tibet.
Farther west, beyond the Trishuli River, was the Gorkha Kingdom which was destined to bring the whole of the Teesta-Satluj region under its control by the first decade of the nineteenth century. Unlike most of the principalities of the west, Gorkha has had a recorded history from the time of its establishment in 1559, when Drabya Shah, a prince of the royal house of the adjoining principality of Lamjung, wrested the territory from local tribal chiefs and brought it under the authority of a Hindu king for the first time. Gorkha comprised an area of about 2,500 square kilometres in a triangular area east of Lamlung and Tanahu, with Tibet in the north and the inner Tarai region of Chitwan in the south. Lamjung and Tanahu belonged to a cluster of 24 principalities, or Chaubisi, situated between the Marsyangdi river, a tributary of the Gandaki, in the east and the Bheri river, a tributary of the Karnali, in the west.[5] Other important principalities in that region which have affected the course of modern Nepali history during the late eighteenth century were Kaski, Parbat and Palpa. Palpa, the biggest and most powerful among the Chaubisi principalities, possessed Butwal and other territories in the western Tarai, which it had obtained on lease from the Nawab of the Indian state of Awadh.[6] Farther to the west of the Chaubisi states lay another group of states collectively known as Baisi, which included Jumla, Doti, Jajarkot, Salyan, Dullu and Dailekh. Two small states in the mountain region across the Mahakali river, Juhar and Dharma, were also traditionally regarded as constituents of the Baisi group, having once formed parts of the territories of Jumla.
The Himalayan region situated west of the Mahakali river and east of the Jamuna river contained two states, Kumaun and Garhwal.  Kumaun had possessed some territory in the Tarai,[7] but that territory had come under the control of the Nawab of Awadh during the late 1770s. The territories of Garhwal, on the other hand, extended to the Doon Valley, north of the Siwaliks. The Jamuna-Satluj region encompassed approximately 14,000 square kilometres but was divided into nearly 34 independent principalities during the late eighteenth century.  Four of these principalities outstripped the others in size and strength, namely, Sirmur, adjoining Garhwal on the west, Hindu, Bilaspur and Besahar hi the north. Between Besahar and Bilaspur were situated two groups of tiny principalities collectively known as Barha Thakurai and Atthara Thakurai. Beyond the Satluj river lay the principality of Katoch, which boasted Kangra, the most renowned fort in the Himalayan region[8]. During the latter part of the 18th century, a new state was founded in the Himalayan region in the north of the Indian subcontinent. That state, formed through the expansion of Gorkha, a small principality in the western part of that region, was the forerunner of the modern Kingdom of Nepal. The fledgeling state faced innumerable trials and challenges in the process of expansion, the most serious being a war with the British East India Company during 1814-16, which resulted in the loss of extensive territories. Only after that did Nepal emerge as an independent state within clearly demarcated boundaries.[9]

India-Nepal Relations under PM Oli

The Indian Connection
The Chand dynasty of Kumaon had two rival noble families in court, namely the the Maras and the Phartyals.[10] “When the Chand dynasty began fading out, the Phartyals and the Maras were at loggerheads to seize the throne. The Joshis represented the Maras. The Chand family king, Lal Singh Phartyal overtook the Joshis and positioned his son Mohan Singh on the throne, renaming him Moha Chand, King of Kumaon. The Phartyal and Joshi families began quarrelling and his family, including his son, Harsh Dev, were incarcerated. Obsessed with taking revenge, Harsh Dev spent the next twenty-six years, finding ways to oust Mohan Chand and the entire Phartyal clan from Kumaon. Powerless by himself, Harsh Dev resorted to seeking help. In 1788, Harsh Dev managed to kill Raja Mohan Chand with the help of mercenaries. But Lal Singh Phartyal positioned his nephew, Mahendra Chand on the throne and Harsh Dev lost again. In 1789, Harsh Dev invited the Gorkha Sena to defeat and expel Raja Mahendra Chand.”[11] 
In 1790, “under the command of General Amar Singh Thapa, the Gorkha Sena crossed the Mahakali river to Kumaon.[12] Overpowering all resistance, they reached Almora where Harsh Dev joined them providing all support. Almora soon fell to the Gorkhas. Meanwhile, the Gorkhas also received a call for help from Bajhang against Doti, and so a plan was made to conquer Doti, westward of Mahakali river.[13] In 1790, the Gorkhas attacked Doti and expelled the ruler Prithvi Pad Shahi (who would later befriend the British against the Gorkhas in the 1814 Battle of Nalapani). The Gorkha conquest over Doti strengthened their kingdom till the banks of the Mahakali river”.
After the successful ouster of the Phartyal king of Kumaon in 1790, “Harsh Dev now wanted the Gorkha Sena to subjugate Garhwal. He was also to be ceremoniously appointed as the agent of Kumaon by Nepal. This ceremony had to be cancelled since the Gorkha forces received news that China had attacked Nepal, and the troops had to rush back to Kathmandu”.
Before the Gorkhas returned, “the King of Garhwal, Pradyumna Shah, approached the Gorkhas to formalise a peace and diplomatic accord with Nepal.[14] He would pay an annual tribute, and the Gorkhas would treat Garhwal as a protectorate state. The Gorkhas accepted the proposal. Already discomfited at the cancellation of his appointment ceremony, the dejected Harsh Dev reacted jealously to the confederation between Garhwal and Nepal. While the Gorkha Sena was away, he began a hate campaign, planting seeds of ill-will against the Gorkhalis in the Kumaon-Garhwal region”.[15]
In 1795, “King Pradyumna Shah of Garhwal stopped paying tribute to Nepal, and as a result, the war was declared on Pradyumna Shah. By this time, the Gorkha army was free from its engagements in Nepal and returned to the Garhwal-Kumaon region, under the command of Bada Kazi Amar Singh Thapa”.
In October 1803, “the Gorkhali army concentrated forty-five companies in Kumaon. Each company had 200 soldiers bringing the total to 9,000 soldiers. Except for the superior and junior officers who were Nepalese, most of the soldiers were Kumaonis, Rohillas, Mohammedans, Garhwalis, etc. Such a congregation of mercenary soldiers was a usual practice with armies at that time.  Crossing the Pindari river, the Gorkhas reached the banks of the Mandakini river. King Pradyumna Shah retreated towards Saharanpur with Bada Kazi Amar Singh Thapa close on his heels. Finally, the two forces clashed at Khurbura on 8 June 1804, near Dehradun. Unfortunately for Garhwal, on the first day itself, Pradyumna Shah was fatally wounded, following which his son Parakram Shah abandoned the battlefield.” “The Garhwali defences fell, and it was a victory for the Gorkhas. Amar Singh Thapa arranged for Pradyumna Shah’s body to be wrapped in an expensive shawl and under full escort, carried it to Haridwar for a cremation befitting a king”. [16]
One of Pradyumna Shah’s sons, “Pritam Shah was taken as a hostage to Nepal (where he was married to the daughter of Barn Shah, the Gorkha Governor of Kumaon), while another, Sudarshan Shah was granted asylum by the British with whom he allied to assault the Gorkhas later. Bada Kazi Amar Singh Thapa returned to the west, and the Gorkhas had gained fifty-four Garhwal forts, including Languar Garhi, Lobha, Chandpur Garhi, Jhapleshwar, Badhangarhi, Gorkhagiri, Sirgur Garhi, Dewalgarh, Nawalgarh, Chilgarh, Naithana, Khurkhuree, and others during this campaign. Dehradun also now came under Nepal.” [17]
The Gorkha Sena after Garhwal and Kumaon campaigns moved further away from Nepal. “Their encounters brought them face to face with many of the greatest armies in the region, including that of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Raja Sansar Chand II. Maharaja Ranjit Singh ruled the Kangra Fort territory under administration from Lahore. Across River Sutlej, the Gorkhas ruled from Arid, capital of Baghal State (whose ruling family had been displaced to Ropar) over their territories till the boundaries of the Garhwal kingdom and Kumaon Kingdom.”
The army of the East India Company at that time “comprised of a large number of Scottish and Irish mercenaries. Controlling India necessitated a larger regular and standing army. The army also provided great ancillary opportunities for blacksmiths, horse breeders, gold and silversmiths, tailors, gun houses, etc. Further, they borrowed many ideas from the armies of the many Indian Kingdoms that they had fought against and won. The pomp and glory of the imperial army was borrowed from Tipu Sultan’s army, the Marathas and other great armies. One of the best ideas they incorporated from the armies of various Indian rulers was the use of elephants to haul heavy guns atop hilltops during the Anglo-Gorkha wars. The tame, strong and trainable pachyderms were useful graduation from native porters or mules to carry their loads. Another advantage, the British had been of acquiring troops starting with the Plainsmen such as the Buccaneers and the Poorabiyas (Eastern Indians). Since the entire region consisted of big and small separate kingdoms that were perpetually at war with each other, it was not difficult to get soldiers from one kingdom to battle against their arch enemies of the other. The Poorabiyas had no reason not to fight against Deccaneers and so on and so forth.” “The Indian sentiment of oneness would exhibit much later when for the first time they became slaves under British India and realised that to gain independence, they had to unite as one. The British colonisation of the multitude of Indian States inadvertently played a role in bringing about the sensitivity of bringing in a feeling being a single people from the north, south, east, and west under a region larger than ever.”
Anglo- Nepal wars
“The East India Company had a skirmish with Nepal during the office of Governor-General Minto. It was over a disputed tract of land in the Terai region. By the time Lord Francis Rawdon Hastings, the Earl of Moira took over as British Governor-General of India from 4 October 1813, matters had snowballed to a situation where Francis Hastings found it inevitable to declare war. The debacle over a wasteland at Butwal Terai, also called the Hastings bluff, was instigated. The growing stature of the Gorkha Sena of a hitherto unknown kingdom of Nepal had reached challenging heights for the British. By 1804, Nepal’s western section included Kumaon-Garhwal extending across the hill states of Sirmour, Nalagarh (Hindur), Bilaspur and Bushahr including the petty states of Bahra and Athara Thakurais till the eastern territory of southern Sikkim. The East India Company, on the other hand, had taken over Hindustan and more. Nepal’s clash with the Company began as their territories started overlapping each other. With new acquisitions, old disputes were also inherited, particularly in the Terai area, which ran across the state of Oudh where the Company had started establishing protectorates under its administration. The Terai Arc, which forms the southern strip of Nepal, was a no man’s land where only local natives could survive. For Nepal, the Terai was not only the source of agriculture but was also habitat to wild animals like tigers, rhinos and elephants. Kathmandu dwellers owned land there from where they derived income from the crops while royals visited for personal or diplomatic hunting trips. For the same reasons, the Terai was also of interest to the Company.”[20] 
In 1795, “Lord Cornwallis had assured the Raja of Nepal of defining the borders along Morang and Purnea districts, but the work had not materialised since records were inaccurate and the cultivators did not permit revenue collectors to enter their territories. This region was an exceedingly hostile area with no Company functionary wanting to go there for any legal landmarking. In 1804, when General Amar Singh Thapa conquered Palpa, he expected continuance of rents from Butawal near Gorakhpur. But when Nepalese officers went to Butawal to collect the same, they were shocked to know that the Nawab of Oudh had ceded Gorakhpur to the Company. The Nepalese offer to retain Butawal with the rental to the Company was rejected. A year passed, and as the Company did not press its claim, the Nepalese continued to visit the Butawal villages, with an interpretation that as long as they paid rent to the local zamindars (who also received it), they were at liberty to continue farming. Eventually, the Company revenue collectors accused Nepal of unlawful land occupation.” In 1806, “Bhimsen Thapa believed the Company was a threat and built a fort at Kheri (east of the Kali river) between Oudh and the hills.”[21] In 1811, “the Magistrate of Bareilly reported that the Gorkhas had built a fort in an area which had been assessed as ceded and was a part of the conquered provinces of the Company and therefore no revenues had been actualised. Discussions on these border issues were held in Calcutta, and it was decided that Nepal had no rights on the border areas till they were finalised. Earlier, in 1765, the Company had acquired rights over Bettiah with hundreds of villages, of which Nepal claimed the lowlands of Makwanpur. The Raja of Bettiah, now a Company zamindar, took law in his hands and sent armed mercenaries to murder the Nepalese Subba or Governor there. Nepal’s appeal for justice to the Patna and Saran courts was responded with the verdict that the zamindar could not be blamed since the Nepalese Subba was guilty of unlawful possession. Nepal, displeased at the favouritism shown to the Raja, consented to a joint commission to inspect the border issue, claiming ownership of twenty-two more of the Saran villages, besides the ones in dispute.”[22] “This border dispute brought Nepal in conflict with the Company and the need to tame Nepal was considered. With Nepal’s expansion over the west and east, it was seen as an expansionist power with a formidable presence towards the Northwest Frontier.” [23]
Any conflict across the Terai had to be seasonal, “as it was endurable only for a restricted time. During the monsoon months from April to October, the fatal malaria fever was deadly in the Terai. The ominous campaign of 1766 led by Capt. Kinloch through the Terai to Kathmandu was remembered.[24] The idea of one decisive battle was too perilous contemplating the Gorkhas’ agility in their countryside. Nepal’s long, narrow and horizontal shape was useful for the British war strategists. It would have to be pierced at various points simultaneously like a worm being pinned down with a four-pronged fork. Francis Hastings planned a campaign, dividing his forces into separate and simultaneous assault. Fighting at several places over a prolonged stretch and period would break the Gorkha defences stretched over extended ranges. The veteran Gorkha Commander Kazi Amar Singh Thapa and the capital at Kathmandu were the cardinal targets the British were gunning for. Amar Singh had to be kept away from Kathmandu, and the two blocked from contact at any point. Two columns were assigned to assault Amar Singh’s stronghold in the western Himalayas. Another two would attack from the south of Nepal. By October 1814, merely a few months after the last skirmish at Butawal, the British columns were in position at the four points of assault. The Gorkhas, on the other hand, were not able to complete their preparations in the time that Hastings had expeditiously drawn up”.
On 31 October 1814, “the British column led by Major-General Robert Rollo Gillespie attacked the Gorkha stockade called the Khalanga Fort commanded by Balbhadra Kunwar. Gillespie was killed on the first day. The Gorkhas put up such a robust fight that the British side had to resort to blocking off their clandestine water supply to defeat them.” The staunch Gorkha defence, hit by lack of water, ultimately crumbled. “Balbhadra and his men evacuated the fortress and sped westwards to Jythuck in Sirmour. On 30 November 1814, when the British troops entered the fort, they found dead or dying Gorkhas. Major-General Martindell with his troops then moved towards Jythuck.”[25]
The Treaty of Sugauli between Nepal and East India Company was signed on 2 December 1815.[26] “Of the two transcripts of the Treaty signed, one went to Hastings and the other to King Girvan Yuddha Bikram Shah Dev for ratification. Hastings endorsed his transcript with great relief. The loan of Rs 2 crore that he had taken from the Nawab of Oudh for the war could now be taken care of. He had been under flak from the Board of Directors for the colossal war expense. Now he planned to recompense half the loan amount by giving the Terai on the Oudh border to the Nawab, and much of Nepal’s territories in the west were in his possession. Nepal was granted only fifteen days to ratify the treaty but was not ready to give up without another fight. Nepal did not ratify the treaty, and the Treaty of Sugauli did not return from Kathmandu with ratification, and the deadline concluded.” “Bada Kazi Amar Singh Thapa who had been called to Kathmandu to endorse the Treaty, had protested against the inclusion of the Article 4 which stated, “With a view to indemnify the Chiefs and Bharadars of the State of Nepal, whose interests will suffer by the alienation of the lands ceded by the foregoing Article, the British Government agrees to settle pensions to the aggregate amount of two lakhs of rupees per annum on such Chiefs as may be selected by the Rajah of Nipal, and in the proportions which the Rajah may fix. As soon as the selection is made, Sunnuds shall be granted under the seal and signature of the Governor-General for the pensions respectively.”[27]It meant that chosen Nepalese would be allowed to retain jagirs or pensions in the Terai. Amar Singh Thapa was against any Nepalese being pensioners or jagirdars under British government as it meant they would still be puppets under British rule. He insisted that there should be no grey area and prevailed upon all not to consent to any such clauses. “‘Bradshaw agreed to amend the Treaty and confer the estates in the Terai west up to River Rapti, permanently to the Nepalese. On 28 December 1815, Chandrasekhar Upadhyaya and Gajraj Mishra returned to Kathmandu to bring the Treaty duly ratified. By this time, Hastings had appointed as the new Political Agent and Military Commander to resume the Treaty talks. On 25 January 1816, the relationship of the East India Company and Nepal was in its third year; when Ochterlony assumed charge of military preparations to not only capture the forts of Makwanpur but also attack Kathmandu if the Nepalese did not ratify the Treaty. On 27 January 1816, when Gajraj Mishra arrived at Sugauli from Kathmandu without the ratified Treaty, he was told to apprise his government that all negotiations had ceased and war declared.”
On 27 January 1816, “a year after he led his campaign against Amar Singh Thapa from Nalagarh in the west, Ochterlony was at it again, this time from the Terai, close to Kathmandu.[28] Nine km from the periphery of the Terai, the little hamlet of Balwi, at the edge of Saran, bustled with activity as British troops congregated in numbers never seen before. Thousands of soldiers marched in with artillery of guns and cannons, elephants and all kinds of support personnel. The planned points of attack were the three forts at Hethaura, Makwanpur and Harcharpur. Major General David Ochterlony with four brigades consisting of 20,000 men and eighty-three guns would target Makwanpur.”[29] On Ochterlony’s left, “the column led by Major General John Wood (recalled again) with 5,000 men and artillery was to advance from the Terai towards Palpa and Tansen. On Wood’s left, Jasper Nicholls, along with Edward Gardner, would lead 6,500 men with twenty field guns. Lt Colonel Adams was to advance from Kumaon to the Gorkha position in the west. 0n 3 February 1816 the British troops were back to heaving, chopping, blasting and cleaving paths for their guns on elephants again, through the forests of the Terai and up the hills towards the extremely formidable Bichakori Pass. On 14 February 1816, Ochterlony and his men began negotiating the arduous climb up the 300 feet high, cliff face of Bichakori Pass. They clung on to shrubs, branches and rocks, whatever they could hold on to, hauling up their baggage with ropes. It took them twenty-five hours to accomplish this herculean task. Ochterlony marched on westwards, to Hethaura, crossing the Karara river. He camped there for a week till Burnet and his troops caught up with him. The Raja or Chogyal of Sikkim offered Tibetan soldiers and full co-operation to Major Barre Latter for his campaign against Nepal’s strongholds in southern Sikkim. Latter already had 35,000 regulars and 100 pieces of artillery. After marching eastwards across the River Kosi, Latter reached Titalia, where he added 2,000 Tibetan soldiers. They marched the distance of 370 km from River Kosi to the Gorkha fort at Nagri which was well defended. Surrounding the fort, Latter held it to siege and tried unsuccessfully to persuade the Governor of the fort, Jayanti Khatri to surrender.”[30]
Fig.3.1: Map of Nepal
This Nepal-East India Company war was a terrible ordeal for Nepal. This resulted in the loss of approximately half of the Nepalese territory. However, the conflict also manifested and proved to British of the fighting mettle of the Nepalese under severely adverse circumstances.
Earlier, the Nepali invasion of Tibet in 1855 too resulted in a disaster for the Kingdom of Nepal and once again resulted in great losses once China intervened. The resultant was the signing of the Treaty of Thapathali, concluded in March 1856, which forced “Nepal to acknowledge the special status of China in Tibet and also committed Nepal to assisting Tibet in the event of any foreign intrusion. In the 19th century, Nepal aligned itself with the British Raj in India and supported its invasion of Tibet in 1908. When China sought to claim Tibet in 1910, Nepal sided with Tibet and Britain and broke relations with China after Tibet drove Chinese forces out in 1911”.[31]
“The 1950–1951 invasion of Tibet by the People’s Liberation Army resulted in significant changes in the Chinese relationship with Nepal. China ordered restrictions on the entry of Nepalese pilgrims and contacts with Tibet and increased its support for the Communist Party of Nepal, which was opposed to the Nepalese monarchy.[32]Mao repeatedly said that from 1950 onwards, that Taiwan, Tibet, and Hainan Islands were Chinese territories and would be re-possessed. The predominant trait in this claim was the advent of maps showing large parts of Korea, Indo-China, Mongolia, Burma, Malaysia, Eastern Turkestan, India, Tibet, Nepal, Sikkim, and Bhutan as Chinese territories.” “In fact, Mao repeatedly stated publicly, that Tibet was the palm of a hand, with its five fingers as Ladakh, Sikkim, Nepal, Bhutan, and North East Frontier Agency.” [33]
“This statement of Mao worried King Tribhuwan of Nepal who invited an Indian Military Mission (IMM) to Nepal for reorganizing and modernising his army. Before King Tribhuvan’s takeover, Nepal had no regular army or soldiers. They were kept part-time and when not on duty followed other professions. Periodically, they were called for parades in Kathmandu. This army was ill-equipped and ill-paid.”[34]
The IMM arrived at Kathmandu “on February 28, 1952, and was tasked to assist in the reorganization of the Nepali Army, formulating defence plans against internal and external threats, and improving intelligence and administrative establishments. The IMM was considered a sell out to India, by various political parties including the B. P. Koirala faction of the Nepalese Congress Party. The IMM comprised of a Major General assisted by 20 Indian army officers. In December 1953, its strength was a total of 197, all ranks. On its recommendations, by April 1952, the RNA was downsized from 25,000 ill-organised, ill-paid and indisciplined soldiers to 6000 better trained and equipped ones.”[35]
In the meanwhile, “in September 1951, 17 check posts were established, with Nepalese concurrence, along with Nepal’s northern borders with China.[36] These were manned jointly by 75 Indian technicians and Nepalese Army personnel. In mid-1958, the King asked India to withdraw the IMM[37]. As a result, India agreed to reduce its strength to 23 in all and to retain it under the name of Indian Military Training and Advisory Group (IMTAG). On June 5, 1969, the Nepalese PM asked for the withdrawal of the check posts and IMTAG and stressed that Nepal could not compromise its sovereignty for India’s so-called security.” “The withdrawal of military personnel was completed by August 1970. In practice, Nepal remains in close touch with India in matters of defence and security.”
In 1965, “consequent to the arms agreement, India was required to supply arms, ammunition and equipment to the entire Nepalese Army of 17,000 personnel, comprising four re-organised brigades. It catered for replacement of existing weapons as well as training.”[39]  “Military relations soured with the withdrawal of the IMTAG. After the restoration of amicable relations, post-1989 crisis, the Nepalese sought India’s help in raising large-scale military formations by reorganising the existing army from its battalions and independent companies into brigades and divisions.  The Maoists rebellion in Nepal forced the Government of Nepal to relook at the equipping of its army and make it capable of fighting these Maoists. Once again Nepal requested assistance from India and a host of other nations including the USA, the UK, and China, the EU, and Pakistan, all of whom reacted in various ways and provided Nepal with diverse military equipment.” From India, “under a 70% assistance scheme, and through a series of defence-purchase negotiations”, “the Nepal Army (NA) received more than 26,000 weapons of various kinds including 21000 Indian-made INSAS rifles, 81 and 51 mm mortars and other military hardware including landmines, detonators, safety fuses and time pencils. India also provided four Advanced Light Helicopters.” Post the ‘Jan Andolan’ and under admonition of the Government of Nepal, “India suspended military aid and supply of lethal equipment but continued with the supply of non lethal weapons to include 216 light vehicles, 154 heavy vehicles, including 58 trucks of 7.5 tons capacity, 67 trucks of 2.5 tons capacity, 4 ambulances, and 25 multi-purpose armoured vehicles, among others.”[40]
The “Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the government and the then Maoist rebels stopped both parties from procuring arms and ammunitions until the completion of the peace process.[41] After the conclusion of the peace process and with the integration of the former Maoist combatants into the Nepal Army, the government of Nepal wrote to all countries having diplomatic relations stating that there was no obstruction for procurement of arms and ammunition.”[42]
Nepal continues to request “arms assistance/ weapons from India under the Nepal-India Peace and Friendship Treaty of 1950. Article 5 of the said treaty mentions that Nepal was free to import arms from any third country but needed to consult before the Indian government.” This clause Nepal continues to disregard.[43]
This clause has remained “a divisive and debated issue among the leaders, experts and analysts and has often been termed as unequal while some politicians have maintained that this treaty compelled Nepal to depend on India. Several people want a re-examination of the treaty while some have been demanding that the accord is scrapped in the changed geopolitical scenario.”
“Since the reinstatement of Democracy, post the Jan Andolan in Nepal, military relations and cooperation between the two countries gradually improved. Likewise, India’s concern and ascendency, after Nepal’s peace process, has increased dramatically”.
Military Relations India and Nepal Post Independence
At the time of Independence, there were ten Gorkha Regiments in the Indian Army. Although Pakistan also made a bid for the surplus Gorkha regiments, they did not press their claim, and, of course, Nepal could not be expected to go along with that claim.[44] Six Gorkha Regiments were earmarked for the Indian Army and four for the British Army.[45] It was also decided that a referendum be held in all Gorkha units for the Gorkha soldier to give his choice for service in the Indian or the British Army. Till 1947, the British had debarred Indians from joining the officer cadre of Gorkha Regiment. Even when Gorkha soldiers from Gorkha Regiments got promoted to commissioned ranks, they were not accommodated in Gorkha Regiments. They were posted to different Indian Regiments. British officers fervently believed that, as the Gorkha soldiers had been serving only under them and they had no contact with Indian Officers, the result of the referendum among Gorkha soldiers was a foregone conclusion. But the results of the referendum came as a great shock to them. Well over 90 per cent of Gorkha soldiers opted for service with the Indian Army. Non-optees from Gorkha Regiments earmarked for service with the British Army were drafted into newly raised Battalions of Gorkha Regiment allotted to the Indian Army.[46] A new Gorkha Regiment, namely the 11 Gorkha Rifles, had also to be raised for these non-optees.[47] After Independence, Indian officers were posted to Gorkha units for the first time. It took a few months for these units to settle down with a completely new set of officers. Thus, in the initial months of the 1947-48 war in Jammu and Kashmir, there was no participation of Gorkha units. However, later they more than made up for it in Kashmir.[48] The Gorkhas distinguished themselves in the assault on 10,000 feet Pir Kanthi Hill and in the epic battle of Zojila.[49] During the advance to Kargil, Subedar Harka Bahadur Gurung swam across an icy cold swift flowing river in winter to enable a rope bridge to be built. Even today the concrete bridge at that site bears his name. There were many gallantry awards of Maha Vir Chakras and Vir Chakras earned by Gorkha units in Kashmir. They also earned an Ashok Chakra, the highest gallantry award in peace during the Police Action in Hyderabad.[50] In every war fought by the Indian Army after Independence, the Gorkhas have played a gallant role. They have earned several Param Vir Chakras, the highest award for gallantry.
Since 1965, both the countries confer the title of “honorary general” to each other’s army chief. “The two armies exchange goodwill visits since 1950, when the then Chief of Indian Army, General Cariappa visited Nepal. Since then, 21 Indian Army Chiefs visited Nepal while 16 Nepal Army Chiefs have visited their southern neighbour.” [51] “The relationship between the Nepal Army (NA) and the Indian Army is excellent.  A large number of officers and men undergo professional military courses in India. Further, a large number also have close relations (both serving and retired) with their kith and kin who serve/served in the Indian Army.”[52]
Traditionally, “the Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) of the NA visits India at the earliest after assumption of the post, during which he is conferred with the rank of an Honorary General of the Indian Army by the President of India”.  In 2016, the NA Chief, General Rajendra Chettri visited was conferred with the rank of ‘Honorary General in the Indian army and the Indian Army Chief, General Bipin Rawat has conferred this rank in the Nepali army in 2017.[53]
In 1995, “India had in principle accepted the request of the Government of Nepal to assist the NA in its ‘Modernisation and re-organisation’ process. During 2004-2007, defence stores worth IRs.2, 12,85,8,333 were provided to the Nepalese Army gratis. Apart from the stores supplied under ‘Modernisation Programme’, NA also purchases defence stores on payment. Due to recent political changes in Nepal, the quantum of supply of defence stores supplied to the NA has considerably reduced.”[54]
Based on “an agreement during the 7th Nepal-India Bilateral Consultative Group on Security, the two countries commenced joint training at platoon level (30 men each) in 2011. The first two joint exercises focused primarily on jungle warfare and counterinsurgency operations. Troops shared their experiences and exhibited skill sets during joint training at Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare School at Vairangate in Mizoram and a similar school at Amlekhganj in Nepal. This level of joint training was upgraded to a company level in 2012”.
Subsequently, “Indian and Nepalese Armies crossed another historic milestone, when a battalion from each of the countries took part in a combined training programme to ensure inter-operability in the disaster-prone region of Uttarakhand. The Indo-Nepal Joint Military Training Exercise Surya Kiran-V was conducted at Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand from September 23 to October 6, 2013. This was the first of the battalion level combined training exercises between the two countries, and at least 400 soldiers from each Army participated at Pithoragarh where the focus was on ‘Disaster Response’ in the geological disaster-prone zones of the Himalayas.”[55] In February 2016, “the Ninth Indo-Nepal Combined Battalion level Military Training Exercise SURYA KIRAN was conducted at Pithoragarh. During this exercise, the Indian Army and the Nepalese Army trained together and shared their experiences of Counter Terrorism operations and Jungle Warfare in mountain terrain.”[56]
These Surya Kiran series of exercises “are bi-annual events which are conducted alternatively in Nepal and India. The aim of these combined training exercises is to enhance interoperability between the Indian and the Nepalese Army units.  The training also focuses on Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Relief including medical and aviation support.” “Both the Armies stand to benefit mutually from these shared experiences, and this combined training, mutual interaction and sharing of experiences between both the countries further invigorates the continuing historical military and strategic ties, giving further fillip to the bilateral relations and existing strong bonding between both countries.”[57] 

Feasibility of Simultaneous Elections : Implications for the Federalism in India


Elections are processes, events as well as celebrations in a representative democracy like India. So, elections and electoral reforms have often been a topic of discussion and deliberation in the public sphere of India. The proposal regarding the introduction of the simultaneous election system is one such widely debated electoral reform currently. It proposes to hold elections at both the central as well as the state levels, simultaneously at a fixed date every five years. India has  experienced simultaneous elections from 1952 to 1967, after which this system was discarded as a result of certain political changes. Three reports of different governmental institutions have  played a significant role in shaping the nature of the debate regarding the simultaneous election  system: the 170th report of the Law Commission of India, the 79th report of the Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice  and a recently published discussion paper by the NITI Ayog. Also at a more political level, the  President and the Prime Minister of India have strongly pitched their support for simultaneous  election on a variety of forums.
There are mainly two justifications given for simultaneous elections, namely, reducing financial  burden on the exchequer and removing a ‘policy paralysis’ emerging as a result of the Model  Code of Conduct. However, the problem lies not in the desirability of simultaneous elections but  in its feasibility. Implementation of this electoral reform is likely to seriously affect the federal  nature of Indian polity. The slogan of ‘One Nation, One Election’ seems to be unitary in nature  as it ignores the autonomy of the state’s elections. It may produce uniformity in the composition  of political parties ruling at the central and state levels, as it is most likely to prefer the national  parties over the regional ones. It will also possibly facilitate the national ruling parties  dominating the state governments through employing the Article 356 when the existing state  governments lose the confidence of their respective assemblies and no other political  party/coalition is able to claim support of the majority. The simultaneous elections might also  erode the very purpose of the Rajya Sabha, namely, representing the states and working as a  check on the popular house of the Parliament (Lok Sabha).
The debate around simultaneous elections has highlighted different defects in its functioning and  produced a public debate regarding how to remove those effects. However, in this journey, the  Indian democracy can’t afford to damage its federal nature by further strengthening the central  government and the national political parties in an already vertically asymmetric federal polity.  We can take away lessons from this ongoing debate regarding the simultaneous election system and explore better alternatives that will bring about efficiency in our system but not at the cost of  further weakening the federal units, that is, the states of the ‘Union of India.’ What a better  purpose a public debate and deliberation can serve in enriching the world’s largest democracy!
Elections are not only the mechanical processes but also an expression of an organic relation  between the citizens and their representatives in democracy. In spite of a huge political and  socio-cultural diversity, India owns a unique history of running a democratic system successfully  through popular elections for the last seven decades, except some disturbances in the decade of  1970s. Regular elections are the instrument through which India’s citizens are facilitated to run  the government through their elected representatives. So, elections are processes, events as well  as celebrations in the Indian democracy.
Considering the significance of elections in Indian democracy, the electoral reforms have been a  widely discussed area. Many major-stones in electoral reforms, to name a few, the Tarkunde  Committee, the Dinesh Goswami committee, have encouraged public debates around the reforms in the sphere of popular elections. The debates around the alternatives to the First-past-the-post  system, use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and holding simultaneous elections for the  Lok Sabha and legislative assemblies are nowadays few such deliberate attempts in order to  bring reforms in our electoral system.
Debate of Simultaneous Elections: A Historical Overview
The proposal of the simultaneous elections system proposes to take elections at both, the central  as well as the state level, simultaneously at a fixed date after each five years. India has  experienced simultaneous elections from 1952 to 1967. But these simultaneous elections  were not ‘designed’ as such. The dominance of the ‘congress system’ facilitated these elections.  However, we could not continue with the simultaneous election after 1967 because of the  changing nature of the politics in India.
A debate of the simultaneous elections is not a very recent one. It is as old as one that got  a major momentum in the 1990s. The Law Commission of India talked about a wide range of  electoral reforms in its 170th report on ‘Reform of the Electoral Laws’ in 1999. And it  recommended the simultaneous elections as one of ways to bring ‘stable governments.’ It also  suggested ways how this reform can be brought about gradually by aligning elections of  different state legislative assemblies with that of the Lok Sabha.
Another influential case in favor of simultaneous elections was made by the Department-Related  Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice which  submitted its report to both the houses of the parliament in December 2015. This 79th report was  titled as ‘Feasibility of Holding Simultaneous Elections to the House of People (Lok Sabha) and  State Legislative Assemblies.’ It discussed the feasibility of this reform in detail. It has  contributed to the debate on simultaneous elections through one of its recommendations which  suggests taking simultaneous elections in two phases, roughly each after two-and-half years. This  suggestion will, according to the report, reduce the curtailment in the period of existing  assemblies in order to align them with the General elections.
This issue is debated not only at the institutional levels as mentioned above but at the political  one as well. Our Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the person who has re-initiated this debate in the public sphere. He has been advocating conducting simultaneous elections at many forums like  the meetings of the governing council of the NITI Ayog and the Law Commission of India and  so on. Also, while addressing the parliament, the President Ramnath Kovind asked the members  of Parliament (MPs) to discuss and consider the simultaneous elections as a way to reform our electoral system. So, both, the head of the government and the head of the executive, have  strongly pitched their support for the simultaneous elections in India.
Why Simultaneous Elections?
Simultaneous elections are justified mainly for two reasons. One, it will reduce the financial  burden of the exchequer. According to a discussion paper published by the NITI Ayog, titled  ‘Analysis of Simultaneous Elections: The “What”, “When” and “How”’, the 2009 Lok Sabha  elections incurred Rs. 1115 crores and the 2014 Lok Sabha elections Rs. 3870 crores. It shows  that the Govt. of India spends a huge amount of money on conducting elections and that also is  strikingly increasing day by day. Besides, political parties also spend a huge amount on  elections. Some news agencies’ estimate this spending by political parties on the 2014 Lok  Sabha elections could be more than Rs. 30000 crores. So, if we take simultaneous elections,  political parties do not need to spend extra on separately on the central and state elections.
Second justification is related to ‘policy paralysis.’ The Election Commission of India (ECI) is empowered to enforce the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) for the purpose of fair  elections. The MCC puts some restrictions on the governments regarding announcements of new  policies. And, on an average, at least three to four different elections take place in India every year. So, the governments are always in the ‘election mode.’ It obstructs governance. As  simultaneous elections will reduce the number of elections to only once a year, the central and state governments will have to face the MCC once a year. Hence, these governments will be able  to deliver their developmental policies for almost four and half years with any obstacles.
Also, there are some other justifications too. Simultaneous elections will reduce the burden on  the security personnel, deployed to ensure safe and peaceful elections. As noted by Dr. Y. S.  Quarishi, simultaneous elections will contain the incidences of communalism, casteism and  other polarizing events that frequent elections breed.
Is the notion of ‘One Nation, One Election’ unitary in nature?
Like, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) reform was guided by the notion of ‘One Nation, One  Tax’, the guiding notion in the case of simultaneous election is the notion of ‘One Nation, One  Election.’ Although uniformity brings order in the system, it is inherently harmful for diversity.
On the background of the homogenous Western democracies, diversity and democracy were  conceived to be contradictory to each other. As we all know, the preservation of democracy  along with promoting diversity is one of the contributions of the Indian democracy to the  theories and practice of democracy. The slogan of ‘One Nation, One Election’ suggests there  should be only one election after a fixed period, that is, five years. It attempts to do away with  different elections at the different levels in the Indian polity, mainly at the national and state levels {and Panchayat levels (3rd tier)}. But federalism is one of the basic structure principles of  the Constitution of India. So, the slogan of ‘One Nation, One Election’, the guiding notion of  simultaneous election debate, is unitary in nature, for it will negate the autonomy of state  elections.
Impact on regional parties
Often, issues in the national elections tend to influence the political choices of the people in their  respective state elections. According to a recent study published by the IDFC, there is a 77%  chance that Indian voters will vote for the same party for both the centre and state in case of a  simultaneous election. It clearly underlines that the significance of the developmental issues  related to the states will get sidelined by the wave of the issues involved in the national elections.  Also, simultaneous elections will reduce the chances of regional parties to come to power. This  electoral reform is likely to give more possibilities of the national parties getting upper hand on  and dominating the regional ones by monopolizing the central and state governments. And if  regional parties consequently become weaker, the diverse demands of states, which are integral  federal units, will not be able to reach the central as well as state governments.
If we want to align different assembly election-cycles with that of the Lok Sabha, it is necessary  to either prepone or postpone the current expected schedule of the assembly elections. It leads  to, then, two important questions. One is whether these state governments will be ready for any  curtailment in their existing tenure- and in their political power- which is the principal objective of any political party. Secondly and more importantly, what to do about the constitutional and  moral right of the people of that state to be governed by the existing government which they  have ‘popularly elected’?
Also, at a more political level, we usually see that one or two union ministers are made in charge of their political parties in the state elections. With the coming of the simultaneous elections,  the entire national leadership of the national political parties would be on the ground specifically for  the campaigning purpose. It might lead to the subordination of the state-level leadership who are  more aware of the regional problems. And for these national-level leaders won’t be a part of the  state governments formed after the elections and so, not being accountable to people of the state,  the simultaneous election system poses a possibility of national-level leaders hijacking the state  elections and ultimately leading to the loss of common people belonging to the concerned states.  
It is, no doubt, true that a very huge amount is spent on the elections in India. But simultaneous  elections, if they come into practice, may not be able to curb this huge expenditure. Regional parties  will be contesting in  their states and spending as they used to spend before the  simultaneous election system. It will be only the national parties who really benefit from this  electoral reform. So, these national parties will reap the economies of scale of one large election  at the cost of regional parties. And all this will erode the very essence of federalism in India.
Systemic Challenges
In a parliamentary form of government, the provision of no-confidence motion is the most  powerful weapon in the hands of the opposition to put a check on the power of the government.  Being a parliamentary system, India is no exception to it. The system of simultaneous elections  proposes to introduce a fixed schedule of elections, meaning there can’t be elections before or  later that fixed date which will come after every five years. This gives rise to a stumbling block  at both the central and state levels: if a no-confidence motion is passed and as the result, the  existing government steps down, who should run the government till the next scheduled date of  election comes?
Broadly, there remains two ways out. First one is suggested by the Law Commission of India in  its 170th report, referring to the Article 67 of the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany, namely, the ‘constructive vote of no confidence.’ The ‘constructive vote of no  confidence’ entails no-confidence motion can be introduced in the parliament (in case of India,  in only the Lok Sabha) only if it enables electing the successor with the support of majority. It  has a very harmful implication for the parliamentary form of government, and for democracy,  as it puts restrictions on the right of the opposition as a check on the power of the government  through the weapon of the no-confidence motion. Second way-out is that of dissolving the Lok  Sabha and allowing the existing government to continue for its remaining term by providing the  ‘aid and advice to the President’, if no other party is able to secure the vote of the majority. It has  a variety of serious implications for the parliamentary as well as democratic system. But this  paper would not go into its details.
The second way-out, if applied to the state governments, creates one more  possibility: enforcement of the Presidential rule until the new government is elected through the  already scheduled election cycle. And, this affects the federal nature of the Indian polity. It blows  away the original purpose of Article 356 of the Indian Constitution, that is, inability of the  existing government to govern ‘in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.’ In other  words, isn’t continuing with the government that has lost the confidence of the legislature nothing different than an oligarchic rule? It will give a way for the central government to rule  over the states through its agents, the governors. It will also encourage the central government to  attempt frequently to topple the state governments, especially ruled by the opposition parties.
Any impact on the Rajya Sabha?
The Rajya Sabha is the upper house of the parliament facilitating representation of the states. The  system of simultaneous elections is likely to have a two-fold impact on the functioning of the  upper house of the parliament. If simultaneous election gives rise to, more or less, uniformity in  the political parties running the central and state governments, it will also bring about the  uniformity in the composition of the members of the Rajya Sabha as majority of them are elected  from the legislative assemblies. This has two implications for federalism. One, it will put a  challenge to the ability of the upper house to represent the diversity of opinion of the states. Second,  uniformity in party/ coalition, ruling at both central and state levels, might monopolize the  functioning of the Rajya Sabha by pushing the regional parties to the margin.
Another major likely impact of the simultaneous election on the Rajya Sabha is a more structural in nature: if the legislative assemblies are dissolved as the result of the no-confidence motion,  how to put in new members to the upper house, until the new elections take place on the  scheduled date of the simultaneous election? It is most likely to create a deadlock situation in the  Rajya Sabha.
Both of these possible impacts on the Rajya Sabha will undermine the possibility of the regional  parties to represent their states in the upper house of our parliament. It will also erode the  functioning of the Rajya Sabha as a check on the Lok Sabha.
Way out
Almost all political parties have a consensus regarding the intentions behind the simultaneous  elections in India. Problem regarding the simultaneous election is not about its desirability but its  feasibility.
Here is a need to refer back to the justifications, mentioned earlier, of the proposal of the  simultaneous election. The Election Commission of India spends approximately 1.8% of the total  budget of the Government of India. This amount is worth spending considering the importance  of the elections in the democracies. Rather, the government can introduce a cap on the spending  of the political parties on elections, which accounts almost 9 to 10 times more than that of the  government. If there will be no cap on the spending by the political parties on elections, even the  simultaneous election system might not be able to save this extra-spent amount to a large extent.
The problem regarding the MCC resulting in a ‘policy paralysis’ seems to be overemphasized.  The MCC does not suspend the ongoing schemes and their administration. It forbids only those  activities of the government which can ‘influence the voters.’ As correctly noted by Suhas  Palshikar, an eminent political analyst, in his piece in The Hindu (dated 02 February 2018), ‘this  problem emerges only because parties and governments fail to arrive at a consensus on the scope of the code of conduct and the meaning of what constitutes policymaking and what constitutes  distribution of patronage.’
The issue regarding the burden on the security forces during the elections is going to remain  there even in the case of the simultaneous elections. And social unrest due to polarizing activities  during the election has more to do with the routine, daily politics. This problem will anyways  pop-up in times of the simultaneous election as well.
No compromise with federalism and representative democracy
The principles of federalism and representative democracy are foundation-stones of the  Constitution of India and the Indian polity. The objective of the proposal of the simultaneous  elections is to increase efficiency of our system. However, if the proposal of the simultaneous  elections is implemented, it is most likely to pose a variety of serious implications for federalism: further strengthening the central government in an already vertical- as well as  horizontal- asymmetric-federal polity of India. The contribution of the debate around  simultaneous election is that it has highlighted many problems, as discussed earlier, and given momentum to discuss them. But if this electoral reform of ‘One Nation, One Election’ needs any  compromise with federalism and democracy, we should take away positives from it and look  ahead for better alternatives. After all, this is the significance of the freedom of expression and  deliberation in any democracy in the world. And, it is more important in the world’s largest  democracy which is also one of the most diverse nations in the world.


  • Web link for the report of the Department-Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on  Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice: sonnel,%20PublicGrievances,%20Law%20and%20Justice/79.pdf accessed on 02  September 2018

  • Web link for the report of the Law Commission of India: accessed on 02

  •  September 2018 Web link for the report of the NITI Ayog : ctions.pdf accessed on 02 September 2018


Police is a civil authority of the government represented by a body of officers whose duties are maintaining and executing law, order and safety of the citizens. For people, the police are considered as the source to put an end to a problematic situation. Policing may be performed by various organizations public police forces, the military, private organisations providing security guards and a lot more all with the surveillance and investigative powers at different scales. The best known of these are the public constabulary forces identify through uniform and marked cars patrolling public spaces. Thus, they are the most insight representatives of the civil authority of government.
1.1 Roles and Division
Police officers hold a position of honour and authority and hence they have to go through a great stem of physical and academic training to become part of the police force.
The police of the country has been divided into two sections Centre and the state. Police forces of the various states are governed by their state laws and regulations. State police forces generally have two arms: civil and armed police.  The civil police are responsible for day-to-day law and order and crime control.  Armed police are kept in reserve, till additional support. The state government exercises control and superintendence over the state police forces. The centre maintains various central armed police forces and paramilitary forces, of which four guards India’s borders, and three perform specialised tasks.  These are Assam Rifles (AR) Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), Border Security Force (BSF), Indo Tibetan Border Police Force (ITBP), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and National Security Guards (NSG). The hierarchy within the state police is among 3 main divisions Constabulary, Upper Subordinates and Officer’s rank. The table below briefs about the division of power within the state police force.


2.1 Political Influence
Apart from lack of resources within the police force, it is said political interference is the major issue responsible for plaguing the police force. Transfers, postings, inquiries, proceedings, appraisals and awards are influenced and controlled by the politicians. This makes the force susceptible to wraths and punishments and takes away their independence as well. The recent example of this can be examined in the North-east Delhi riots during February 2020. Decisions were taken by the Home Ministry and they were politically motivated. Delhi police played a biased role towards the Muslim community as the decisions were taken by the home ministry and were politically motivated, apart from being better equipped and trained than other states police force it still failed to control the riots. They violated the notion of secularism which worsened the situation, Delhi police was impeded which didn’t let them take the matter in their own hands.
2.2 Lack of resources
Lack in human resources in the force hampers timely reporting at incident scenes, overburdening the police which decreases the chances for timely redressal. As per the United Nations, ’ recommended standard is of 222 police per lakh persons but India can employ 2.8 million in 2017 while out of which only 1.9 million police officers were employed (a 30% vacancy rate). As per Mint’s calculations, there are only 144 police officers for every 100,000 citizens. States like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Andhra Pradesh’s police forces are all extremely understaffed approximately 100 police staff for 100,000 population which is very poor. North-East and Punjab can be stated as the only states with the properly staffed police force that meets the global standard as set by the UN. As retrieved from the Bureau of Police Research and Development modernisation equipment like new-age weapons, forensic labs, transport infrastructure are inadequate in approximately 260 police stations in the country.  Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) reported The Rajasthan state police required 15,884 weapons, of which the received only 25% causing 75% paucity of weapons.


3.1 Northeast Delhi Riots- 2020
Riots broke out in the evening of February 23, 2020, in Jaffrabad area of North East Delhi. Initially, the ruckus was among the anti CAA protestors and Pro CAA which gradually turned into devastating communal violence. As recorded, more than 53 people died and approximately 200 people were severely injured. The violence affected the transport and communication system in the area along with its shops and houses were burnt down and places of worship were vandalized. On February 23, hours before the communal riots broke out in Northeast Delhi, BJP leader Kapil Mishra gave “ultimatum” to the police to remove anti-CAA protests blocking roads in the area. He asked people to gather at Maujpur Chowk in support of the CAA in reply to the roadblock by those protesting against the new citizenship law. This was widely reported to be an inciting factor. Worsened situations forced the government to impose Section 144, in riot-hit areas, had little effect. Violence also took place in Seelampur, Jaffrabad, Maujpur, Kardampuri, Babarpur, Gokalpuri and Shiv Puri. Areas like Shiv Vihar and Yamuna Vihar. The communal harmony was disturbed but on the contrary in many areas Hindus and Muslims together protected each other from the atrocities thus, maintaining the communal harmony. The ferocity eventually ended on 29th February 2020.
3.2 Role of Police
As gained from the survivors of the riots the role of Delhi Police in curbing the riots has been questioned at various levels. The complaint regarding them being politicised turned the leaf towards their deliberate inaction. Police blamed the shortfall of men that led them to not be able to curb the riots, which claim was denied by the ministry. There were instances reported of police shooting people recklessly and randomly, there were complaints of Police refusing to register FIR’s and custodial tortures for the Muslim community victims.  A video was viral over social media portraying police officials forcing Muslim people to sing ‘Vande Mataram’. The Panel of Delhi Minorities Committee revealed instances of verbal abuse and sexual abuse by police men towards the women during the riots. The Panel commented- It is clear that the police did not come forward to help and, in several instances, resorted to violence towards women. The politicisation of Delhi Police either made them as the Mute spectators or the active participants in the riots. Their failure to maintain law and order in the capital city can be concluded the partisanship to the centre government which led them to play a biased role in the whole situation. Yet, on the contrary the chief Felon accused for initiating this dreadful
event roams out lose with no actions being taken. Delhi Police failed to acknowledge a quote by “Jesse Ventura”- ‘I love my country, Not my Government’.
3.3 Survey
An offline survey was conducted among the youth and adults of Delhi regarding their opinion on North-east Delhi riots and the role of police in managing it
Figure- 3.1
Out of the 40 respondents 78% of them believed that Delhi police failed to curb the riots because they are partisan to the central government. Politicisation influenced their decision-making activity and efficiency. They were more like a spectator which also made some of the personnel victims of the riots. Their selective outrage pointed towards the biased role; others were too scared to fight. It was a mixture of bully and cowardice rather than righteous. Their actions were against the democratic norms of our country, basic human rand fundamental rights were taken away from the people.
38 Respondents agreed towards necessity in change of the recruitment and qualification criteria within the force and suggested training period to be made mandatory for all the personnel for better redressal, ethics and efficiency. They believed improper management of the riots was due to improper inculcations of ethics and norms within some of the police personnel which forced them to take decisions not in the interest of the people.

Figure – 3.2
95% of the respondents believed that the reason for poor inaction of the police if political police riot nexus. While only 4% of them blames understaffed personnel responsible for poor the management.


Cases of Police brutality just can’t be instanced from Delhi riots of 2020, various incidents take us towards the need for police reforms in the force. Recently On 19 June 2020, P. Jayaraj and his son J. Bennicks were picked up for inquiry by the Tamil Nadu Police and then killed in custody for violating the Indian government’s COVID-19 lockdown rules. This custodial death outraged the nation towards police brutality. On the other hand, it is critical to understand the other side of the same coin which states the blemished conditions under which police works. They are poorly paid and kept under lack of resources, politicised and sometimes under corrupt officials. These listed situations also tend to make them unfair and unjust towards their duty.
According to Parliamentary Research Services (PRS), they expressed six areas within which the police force needs reforms. Police Infrastructure, public-police relations, poor working conditions, overburdened police, Separate laws for police and Politicisation of the force. It is bootless to assume of a modern India without extemporization of the police force. Police and Political nexus crime exist because politicians tend to have control over the decisions regarding officers posting thus, it is important to form a system to subtract political interference. This will give the officers freedom in their work allowing them to be more consistent and responsible towards their roles and responsibilities. To reform this flaw
in the system, there has to be changed in the recruitment and selection process for the police force which has to be honest and transparent. It is known that not all of the members within the force go through the training period. Training is an important procedure to inculcate better knowledge, ethics and problem-solving skills. Establishment of Police complaint authorities would try to reduce unwanted politicisation in the force and professionalism will be enhanced.
Understaffing is another issue within the force which leads to overburdening of work that reduces the efficiency of the police personnel making them ignorant towards their other important tasks and incites poor quality of work. It has a poor effect on their mental health too which altogether as a whole increases number of pending cases, crime prevention and response. It has to be appreciated that police worked and helped people beyond their duties under life-threatening conditions amid the pandemic. They protected the citizens and health care workers and ensured smooth movement of essential commodities during the lockdown. But it has paved a way for the need for soft skills within the force that will allow them to deal with people through effective communication and minimal use of violence. Many of them lost their lives to the virus but it was observed that police lacked the ground level capacity which allows essential functioning as the first responder to dreadful events. The reason behind this is only 3% expenditure on police from the central and state government budgets. police budgets have focused solely on manpower. In a large country like India police needs to be well-equipped in terms of, weaponry, forensic, communication and transport support. Budgets need to have allocations towards the capacity building to modify the structure to achieve the desired outcome.


From the above said and observed it can be concluded that Reforms are a necessity in the police force. Model Police Act was passed in 2006 and since then no strong amendment and decision as such has been taken to improve the condition as well as prevent police to work outside of their ethics and codes. Political influence over the force prevents them to take immediate honest actions thus, Politics and Police are in the dire need to be kept away from each other. Most importantly the need for investment in the force either in terms of human resources or modern equipment’s is the need of the hour for proper management of a country with lives of 130 crore.

  1. Rebeiro,Julio. Retrieved from
  2. Rahman, Syed. Retrieved from 7th April 2020.


The Balance of Power in the Global Trade System Has Shifted From Western Powers to Rising Developing Countries

1. Abstract

The world is confronting a risk of the power vacuum that may loom large on its canvas for a long time. The Vacuum is created in light of the fact that Europe and the USA are in a mode of gradual relative decay vis-a-vis the accelerated growth of the rising powers. The Rising powers are effectively testing western powers. Particularly China as an independent entity and BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) as an international group are presenting tough challenges to the Western powers.

There is a continuous structural power move in the worldwide framework. The world is in a state of continuous flux on account of economic and political influences. BRICS has the capability and capacity to be a game-changer yet the absence of cohesive Reasoner on political and economic affairs of the world in BRICS is demonstrative of contrasts in national objectives of its members, political and monetary pressures faced by each country member and weak collective will power to play a decisive role in world polity. This aspect drives me to concentrate on the ideology behind the origin of BRICS and re-examine whether these rising forces are genuinely influencing the world affairs, including the promise of general improvement in the least developed nations. To make accord successful and worldwide participation work in present varied and challenged conditions, the BRICS requires extended degrees of social and cultural ties, political and diplomatic penetration and joint economic projects to challenge the authority of the West.

The focus of this paper will be on BRICS and how are they significantly impact the economic vitality, political environment, artistic canvas, security concerns, exchange of ideas and innovations worldwide manifesting itself as a powerful forum in the form of their enhanced footprints on the political and monetary transactions; whether BRICS has indeed succeeded or failed in achieving their aims and moving forward their agendas globally; is the balance of power in terms of influencing world trade shifting from West to BRICS; is the BRICS gaining more political, diplomatic and social mileage in the world affairs and lastly what will be the
shift in the balance of power in the future milieu of technological advancement, penetration of disruptive technologies and changing political interests.
Keywords: – BRICS, BRICS role in developing countries, Transnational Corporations, infra- BRICS trade, China and WTO.

2. Introduction


Post-1990 was a turning point in the history which embarked new actors, regional and economic abortionists and private-public partnerships responsible for the shift in the equation of global governance tilting it in favour of emerging powers vis-a-vis USA, EU and Japan. With this decline, the south-south participation gained momentum and was destined for further carving a niche in the world of economic affairs.

Robert Koppel defines emerging power as “the emerging power is an economic power in the region which has influence and possesses the capacity for regional and global action. It has a relatively large population and covers a relatively large area. The emerging power realists high economic growth, above the regional average, over a longer period of time and thus provides a growing market for the region. It plays a dominant role in trade within the region. It has regionally and globally active businesses which are increasing in strength, and it increasingly provides public goods in the form of a stable currency and reliable monetary policy. It takes on an increasing role in global governance and the governance of the region, particularly with respect to regional cooperation agreements”. BRICS itself and its member nations fulfil the prerequisites of Emerging Powers to a large extent.

In 2010, Joseph Aye (2010) claimed that the “West is experiencing a relative decline, not an absolute decline”. He further added that the future of the Liberal Order is now at stake. Even though they have the most potent economic and military power, they are struggling with severe weaknesses resulting from low economic growth and the prolonged decline of the industries. He also made an analysis that the hegemonic ability does not depend exclusively on military and economic power, but also on soft power and ultimately on being able to establish and use diplomatic, military, economic and scientific networks. Interestingly, BRICS started posing severe challenges to the West since 2010

Goldman Sachs’s Global Investment Research Division in the year 2001 published the report
– Build Better Global Economic Brice, coining the acronym for four nations that would re- shape the world economy. The term BRIC was coined for Brazil, Russia, India and China, as part of an economic modelling experiment for the next half-century in predicting the global economy patterns. In the seminal paper from Goldman Sachs, which gave birth to the BRIC, world trade shares was one of the critical parameters used to show the growing importance of these emerging powers. (O’ Ne ill, J., 2001).

Since 2010, the BRICS has engaged in enhancing its contribution to the UN, global governance and economic globalist. Even though the initial focus was on economic, commercial and international cooperation between BRICS, they chose to focus their 2017 Annual Summit on finding better ways to defend global governance, economic globalist, free trade, and collective action on climate.

It is interesting to note with each year’s transformation and reform in economic circles how trade policies of BRICS are enforced in several forums such as the World Trade Abortionist, and if the BRICS constitutionalism and their person and community activities does or does not represent a separation of the status duo, and how the balance of power between developing countries is shifting. Besides the United Nations, WTO, 20(G-20), in addition to the bilateral, international, multilateral fora and bodies, BRICS nations are now observers and active participants.

3.  Profile of Exchange

The world economy experienced a significant shift in the second half of the 20th century and the first decade of the 21st century. This can be seen in changes in the share of world growth of developing countries. Between 1970 and 2010, the share of developing countries in the world doubled from one-sixth to one third, while their GDP per ca pita as a proportion to industrial countries recorded a modest increase from one-fourteenth to one-tenth. (Ramayana, Deep, 2016) After 2010, developing countries’ share of foreign trade in services increased significantly to expose their comparative advantage in service exports. Industrialism also contributed to significant shifts in the composition of their economy, as the share of primary crops and commodity-based products though decreased. In contrast, the share of production

rose in both exports and imports. The economic significance of Next-14 developing countries was overwhelming in terms of size, GDP and population. At the same time, their engagement with the world economy was reflected in trade and investment, their industrialism was reflected in manufactured exports and industrial production. (Ramayana, Deep 2016) BRICS countries from the group of Next – 14 are perhaps the most important. China has become the top manufacturing market in Germany (2nd) and the United States (3rd) world-renowned with goods of more than $2 trillion. With revenues worth $536 billion, Russia ranks 8. Worldwide. India is 21st, 290 trillion dollars behind, Brazil 23rd, 243 milliards behind, and South Africa is 43rd, 93,8 billion behind. (OCTORY). The majority of goods exports are exported from BRICS countries. Whilst in India manufactured goods make up approximately 66% of total exports, the fuel and mining exports make up about 20% and farming 10%. Exports of South African fuel and mining account for an increase of 35% of total exports, and Agricultural exports account for a bit more than 10%. Brazil’s exports of resources make up 21.3 per cent, with a significant share of its livestock deportations being also 37 per cent. Russia’s export profile, on the other hand, indicates that almost 70 per cent of total exports, led by finished items and agricultural production, control the fuel and mining market. (BRICS 2012 report).

The BRICS exchange profile further illustrates the fundamental changes that have taken place over the past two decades in their individual economies. Such adjustments are also important considerations when gazing at the role and goals that BRICS is working for.

4. BRICS Trade Governance & Power Influence

The Doha Round was caught amid tectonic shifts in the global balance of economic power–as the 2012 Centre for Rising Powers of the Cambridge University study pointed to. The rise of China, Brazil & India, among other emerging economies, affected WTO negotiations, the structure and processes of negotiations. (Barracuda, B. 2012)

In the field of export regulation, the forces of the BRICS countries are perhaps seen most dramatically. BRICS’ increasing role in global trade has changed the shape of global economic force, increased its ability and preparation in the battle against diverse, developed countries, and demonstrated negotiating power.

The G20 has played a critical role in WTO talks in Brazil, India and South Africa, developing country community calls for ambitious economic changes in developed countries with prosperity for developing countries. The G20 negotiating group was a counterweight in natural resources negotiations where it had previously been dominated by the US and the EU. In its pre-date report, a forum option to the USA and the EU, which was immediately rejected by developing countries, the Indian Group led by Brazil resisted the usual “bar” approach.

The entry of China to the WTO platform was undoubtedly a significant boost for advertising and Liberian economic policy. For its long accession process, China made some progress, collaborating bilateral trade agreements with the nations, including the United States and the European Union. China thereby adopted massive economic and trade sector changes, including new price caps, reduction of export opportunities for agricultural commodities and WTO alignment as given for in TRIPS Agreement; as a result, China has been transformed to conform with WTO obligations.

Involvement of China, then WTO Director-General Michael Moore, was seen as a seminal moment in the history of a multilateral trading system. “WTO will take a significant move in China’s growth as a real-world body,” Moore said. “It is crucial for global economic stability to embrace its regulatory system almost extensively.

After all, China changed its own national laws and regulations by over 2,500 to become a member of the WTO and scrapped more than 800 more to conform with WTO rules. The prevailing perception of the economic impact of the accession of China to the WTO is emphases by Chinese trade representatives and FBI’s preferential goal. As one American Chinese political analyst says, “China’s membership supplied China with resources, technology, vigorous development and innovation and opened up new markets and contributed significantly to the deprecation of trade disputes.” (J-M. F. (2011). Blanchard. Therefore, it is essential to note that China is still incomplete, given its position as the leading player in economical development by state-owned companies. The political fields in which China is still sensitive to WTO concerns cover Chinese Does and the state’s economic activist. The main question now is what kind of power will the BRICS be if the WTO gives rise to the new power structures?

In the very first WTO meetings since Cancan, new powers were happy to clarify Brazil and China as officials, BRAZIL and India became leading power brokers between the industrial and the developing countries in 2005 at Dong Kong.’ Dong Kong’s leadership strengthened the development of a new collaborative coalition defined as’ the Emerging Four’. In the strategy and negotiations, the EU, the United States, Brazil and India have all played a crucial role. The main objective in Dong Kong was to save the WTO. Furthermore, concerning Brazil and India’s position in securing the approval of the developing countries in view the EU and the United States unwilling to make substantial agricultural compromises.

The BRICS Summits had always included economic questions as an essential part of the official agenda. After formal their alliance, BRICS has released trade statements, and a correspondence regularly exists on main business and investment issues, outlining central subjects and defining areas for further economic cooperation. On sometimes, though, BRICS Trade Ministers operated regularly in tandem with the central BRICS Summit meetings and even before the WTO negotiations. The first meeting of BRICS Trade Ministers took place on the grounds of the third BRICS Summit in San ya, China on 13 April 2011. Foreign ministers will meet in Brussels in 2012 and 20 in South Africa in Durban, India. Ministers of Commerce met in 2011. In the Doha WTO process, the BRICS have agreed to a multilateral, less protectionist, more inclusive and more sustainable results, throughout order to improve the global business and investment.

We want a mufti-stakeholder arrangement that would cover only expand but would also be rather involved at different levels in the discussions on bilateral trade. We advocate the aberrational of trade in services in services but contend that each national development and regulatory capacity should be a step-by-step procedure. In other parts of the world, developing countries claim they will use this kind of aberrational in return for’ additional market access possibilities’. In other words, they positively welcome market aberrational, but they welcome market access to consultations and other products and barriers to trade leftover at their own time and in exchange.

5. Trade Development Of BRICS With Developing Countries.

 Three important areas investigate the effect of the BRICS on growth. The WTO was created in 1995 as the adjudicator of world trade law, first and probably most important. The Doha

Process, which was introduced in 2001 in a round of collaboration to respond to the concerns in less developing countries, was of particular concern.

Besides, BRICS will be made a mighty power of various metrics, such as FDI pressures and outflow rates, open trading markets, current account position, projected assets as well as economically active labour powers. Another such indicator of how critical it is for the global economy was the promises the BRICS Group made to add a whopping $75 billion to its 2012 G-20 Summit in Cos Cab’s, to keep the Eurozone crisis from expanding to the global market. Others argue that only this new global equilibrium of economic strength helps us to grasp the Doha Round’s diplomatic past, including the latest year of talks deadlock.

A policy statement and analysis into what each BRICS nation is doing concerning Bilateral Investment Treaty (BLTs) agreements and trade treatises must be made so that BRICS representation can be appropriately understood in trade balance and capital expenditure. China has, in fact, pressed for FTA as the most competitive nation with other developing countries. This is motivated by two strategic goals. The first is to secure the availability for exports of goods of long-term oil and other natural resources. Secondly, the demand must be expanded to new areas in order to sustain expansion. There are now fourteen FTA nations, namely Asia Pacific, Latin America and the UK, in China. There are 31 economies and dependencies in the states. After 2002, ASEAN FTA negotiations have been signed-in China and with Canada, India, New Headland, Peru, Acosta Erica, Dong Kong, Macao and Taiwan. It negotiates Etas with Australia, Sweden, South Africa, Japan and Switzerland (China-Japan-SK FTA) and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). The Etas are the focus of talks with South Africa. FTA Feasibility Studies are currently being performed with India and South Korea.

Brazil was the least consistent in Eta’s among the BRICS members, with five agreements Brazil, in addition, led to the collapse of FTA talks during its government under Lula DA Silva (2003-2011) to maintain its control in local and regional markets. Although talks with the EU were launched in 2010 in Brazil- MERCOSUR, a deadline for the sharing of market access agreements remained to be established after nine negotiating rounds. Brazil has little to benefit by signing an FTA with either the US or the EU unless its subsidies for agricultural products with benefits for Brazil are reduced. Consequently, the WTO remains Brazil’s principal site for demands for northern concessions, especially with regard to domestic agriculture support, but there is no indication that the Northern countries will change their locations in the short term.
Instead, Brazil has relied on frameworks of international cooperation such as the Global System of Trade Preferences (GPS) and the Trade Negotiations Protocol (PTN), which represent trading choice agreements for developing countries. As such, Brazil has depended on multilateral structures. Through lowering duties, they give privileged access to certain goods from the member countries.

In acknowledgement of its support for the Etas, India has concluded 18 deals and engaged in negotiations for a further 16 bilateral trade pacts. Although imports from all these countries and regions into India have increased substantially, exports to India have stagnated. Most of the Etas are profitable— positive strategies — income to the trading partner and loss to India. Imports expanded more rapidly than exports when the Indian administration decided to cut tariffs in almost all cases. Indonesia, ASEAN, China, Malaysia or South Korea. India’s trade deficit was 3.6 billion dollars in 2010-11, before the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) was an aggressive bilateral agreement in 2011. The CEPA was launched one year back, despite India’s economic deficit nearly doubling at $6.3 billion in 2012-13. 2013] (Babu, N.) Such as in Brazil, South Africa’s South-African Customs Union (SACU) policy is far more focused, focus sing on economic relations convergence within the African region than the Southern African Development Community (SADC) approach. South Africa frequently strengthens existing agreements with Europe and explores new northern arrangements, demonstrating a growing desire to expand relations with other emerging economies, such as China and Brazil.

As regards investor security and investment arbitration, China is the only BRICS affiliate of the ICSID, the World Bank-led International Council for the Settling of Investment Conflicts, with the primary goal of providing conciliation and arbitration facilities to foreign investment conflicts. On 16 June 1992, Russia agreed, but it was never accepted. Russia signed on 16 June 1992. The treaty has not been ratified in South Africa, Brazil and India, and private investors can not prosecute them.

The BRICS has increasing importance and impact on foreign trade and investment as to how and to what degree it will boost relations between the North and South and increase economic interaction in the economy, business and development fields and exchanges of expertise.

Southern trade, as part of global trade, proliferated from only 10 to 17 per cent in 2009 in 2001, as stated by the Asian Development Bank (Asian Development Bank (ADB). In trade, investment, development aid and other funding flow in the past two decades, exports from developing countries have shown a substantial increase in economic relations between South and South (SSEC). According to the ADB, this rapid growth is driven by relatively high economic growth, growing globalist of supply and network trading and incremental elimination of trade barriers (Aha, S. and McCartney, P. 2011). The idea of collaboration between North and South, which is the primary driver of development in the West, is advocated by many multilateral institutions, including the WTO and ADB. In order to justify the conditions for further aberrational and opening up the southern markets, more growth prospects were also used in SSEC.

6. Conclusion

Trade and innovation are the cornerstones of the BRICS. In the global economy, they have played a key role with strong growth, increased trade and increasing FDI inflows and exports. The revival of the BRICS and its quick return to economic growth was a significant catalyst that contributed to a global recuperation and thus reinforced the group’s place in a multiparty world as a major power bloc. At a moment of global economic crisis, the most advanced economies are being stirred up.

A majority of international economic deals are the focus of free trade and investment, either under the Soweto’s multilateral framework or under bilateral and regional structures. The BRICS countries have become a powerful platform in which they can show their increasing role in global economic globalist and make use of relevant trade and investment policies. In the long-run Doha Round programme, WTO, Mexico, India, South Africa and China have become important players. Although the restoration of the power circle has not entirely distanced the balance of power from the approach of the original quad, America, the UK, Canada and Japan, the quad plan was still substantially counterbalanced and thus allowed more developing countries ‘ parties to emerge and support their development agenda.

After so many years of BRICS preparation, no proposal was made for a free trade agreement between all BRICS countries. Instead, the BRICS strategy has been to commit government resources to BRICS and infrastructures or other projects for developing countries to create
competition for their own enterprises and to provide their economies with more natural resources. The illustration of BRICS and BLTs indicates a little more overlap between BRICS leaders and certain modern policies.

However, this does not mean that everything is good for the group, as many problems need to be dealt with both in the short and long term. The rankings in the World Bank’s 2012 Annual Report show relatively low BRICS, insufficient services, lack of constitutionalism, heterogeneous community life and erosion of coherent culture, and the fragility of the trade and capital ties between the BRICS countries. If these problems were not resolved immediately, significant complications might occur in order to understand what Goldman Sachs anticipated. In the lack of an immediate solution to these problems, serious problems could be generated to grasp Goldman Sachs ‘ aspirations.

Which sort of power is BRICS; in reality, the major issue posed by the Brice’s emergence as significant trading authorities? Does a status duo campaign seek to defend the system, or is it a revisionist effort to follow an alternative vision of the business and economic policy? The individual BRICS and the BRICS have consistently promoted the WTO reform agenda as a group. The change programme also demonstrates to what point the WTO will become a more stable entity. As we have seen, although trade and economic cooperation between Southern and Southern countries have increased with BRICS’ economic growth, in fact, the patterns of this increased relationship with the rest of the south follow more or less the same course of North-South relations. Trade globalist, including growth from North to West, is being developed as the core hub in a fragmented production chain in which transnational corporations and the FDI power world production networks are driven by economies such as China and India.

Therefore, the BRICS ‘ initial change of trade policies does not indicate a drastic break from a trend of world trade that has generated enormous profits for several large multinational corporations but has seen incomes, working conditions and environmental underdevelopment.

7. References


  1. Bel lo, 2005. The Real Meaning of Dong Kong”.
  1. Baku, 2014. Power Shifts and new blocs in global trade. Taylor and Francis (Online) 54:450, 11-16. Available at;
  1. Babu, (2013). Too many Etas, too few benefits. Business Standard, June 22, 2013, economy-policy/too-many-Tass-too-few- benefits-113062200623_1.HTML).


  1. Borg, B. and C. Find lay (1996). Regional integration and the Asia-Pacific, OxfordUniversity Press, Melbourne.
  1. Bond, and Garcia, A (2015). BRICS An Anti-Capitalist Critique, Chicago.
  1. Blanchard,J-M.  (2011), Time to recall China’s accession to the WTO. Asian Times Online, December 9, China_Business/ML09Cb01.HTML).


  1. Emerson, Michael (2012), Do the BRICS make a bloc? Centre for European Studies,
  1. Very, Francois (2017), A blue BRICS, Maritime Security, and the South Atlantic, 39(2), Contempt Intentional pp. 351-371
  1. Aha, S. and McCartney, P. (2011). South–South Economic Linkages: An Overview.ADB Economics Working Paper Series 270
  1. Hoffman, J. P. Ia and G. Perez (2001). Trade and Maritime Transport BetweenAfrica and South America, ECLAC, Santiago, Chile.
  1. Camden, A. (2001) The Rise of “The Rest”- Challenges To The West From Late-Industrializing Economies, Oxford University Press.
  2. ICSIDWebsite.


  1. Lawrence, (1996).   Regionalism, Multilateralism, and Deeper   Integration,

Washington, DC: The Bookings Institution.

  1. Snarl, A. and Aussie, D. 2004, G20 at the Cancun Ministerial: DevelopingCountries and Their Evolving Coalitions in the WTO, World Economy, 27 (7), 947- 966,
  1. O’ Ne ill, J. (2001). Building Better Global Economic Brice, Goldman Sachs GlobalEconomic Report  66.ht puffs/buckminsterfullerene.pd).
  1. Post 2015. Constitutionalism South-south cooperation: Towards a New Paradigm, (Online) Available at: South-Cooperation-Towards-a-New-Paradigm.pdf. (Accessed 18th December 2019).
  1. Pure,Lakshmi (2007), IBSA: An Emerging Trinity In The New Geography of International Trade, Policy Issues in International Trade and Commodities, Study Series  35 United nations, New York and Geneva,
  1. Risen, H. (2012). Economic Policy and Social Affairs in the BRICS. SustainableGovernance      Indicators      Project,      Bertelsmann      Strutting, http://www.sgi- org/brics/pdf/BRICS_Economy_and_Social_Affairs.pdf.
  1. Send,Joseph (2010)Bic and Bias Forums: Geo-liberals in Disguise or Champions of the South? SAIIA Policy Bodysurfing 24, Emerging Owes and Global Challenges Programme, pp. 1-4.
  1. Solvent, Alejandra; Abashed, Alan; Kislev, Skater (2016), Legal Status ofBRICS and Some Trends of International Cooperation, Indian Journal of Science and Technology, vol 9(36).
  2. WTO,2019,

By- Imagineer Dharma

Indo pacific policy

Author: Shambhavi Jaiswal
Research Coordinator, GCTC
Areas of interest: Diplomacy, international relations, geopolitics



Indo-pacific is a biographic locale of earth oceans interconnecting two water bodies i.e,
the Indian Ocean, the western and focal pacific sea, and the landmasses that encompass them.since just about twenty years the expression “Indo-Pacific” has broadly been utilized in international affairs, anyway, it was first utilized by German geopolitician Karl Ernst Haushofer during the 1920s in his scholarly work called “Indopazifischen Raum”. Afterward, Gurpreet s. Khurana who was a marine specialist and leader head of the New Delhi National Marine Foundation authored it as, “Indo-Pacific procedure,” 10 years back unexpectedly. Further, it was picked by Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, as in his discourse in the Indian parliament in august 2007 he discussed the intermingling of Indian and pacific seas. The locale holds around half of the universe’s populace and is plentiful in mineral and marine assets. In any case, the most significant it is that the Indian ocean trade has been a key factor throughout the history for trade exchange and energy supply of the rising economies like India, China, and Japan.

Almost 10 years prior, in 2007 Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzō Abe believed that in coming years to counter china’s developing impact in military and monetary force, Asia’s and different majority rules systems need to meet up to limit the controlling impact of china in south china and east china ocean. He started a gathering as a discourse in 2007, known as Quadrilateral Security Dialog (QUAD) which is a casual key discussion and multilateral gathering between United States, Japan, Australia, and India that is kept up by semi-common culminations, data trade, and military drills between part nations. The most significant part of the quadrilateral dialogue is maritime security and cooperation, followed by economic and technology cooperation, climate change, and covid-19 related issues.

The First Malabar maritime exercise was done by every one of the four-part nations and Singapore in help to the current multilateral gathering. Be that as it may, the principal pattern of the Quad halted to exist following the withdrawal of Australia in February 2008. The inspected intention behind this disposal was Australia’s extraordinary relations with china. Besides to be exact it tends to be said that in 2007 Australia was profoundly reliant                        on china market for its fare of coal. China, at that point, challenged this quadrilateral gathering, and subsequently to keep up the connection Australia pulled back. All the more such explanations behind the suspension were china’s friendly prime minister Yasuo Fukuda supplanted Shinzō Abe and furthermore India’s leader Manmohan Singh’ visit to China where he discussed the need for India-china relations. Nevertheless, over the span of  the 2017 ASEAN Summit held in Manila, all part nations of QUAD rejoined to resuscitate the quadrilateral partnership. US, Japan, Australia, and India held a vital gathering in manila, witnessed china and its developing impact and animosity in South East Asia.

QUAD- The Vision

The QUAD, which was referred to as the quadrilateral safety dialogue, is now referred to as the quadrilateral framework to the point it has gone past a slim safety dialogue. We can witness appellation of the First QUAD summit 2021 was- “first leaders summit of the quadrilateral framework# where the leaders remarked on securing free and open access to indo-pacific, prioritizing the supply of vaccines considering the pandemic and
resilient supply and production chains.

For very nearly 16 years, the QUAD has neglected to go past being a discussing work. Its guarantees didn’t convert right into it on the ground. However, this time four clear and explicit s areas of cooperation have been identified. The first is Maritime security and cooperation, impressive progress was made around here during Trump Administration as he started alluding to the Asia Pacific as ‘Indo-Pacific.’ In 2020, every one of the four nations partook in the Malabar exercise. Strangely this year, QUAD has extended its collaboration by including the QUAD and non-QUAD members. Reports show that France and the UAE will hold hands with the QUAD for maritime exercise. The second
area of collaboration will be on covid- 19 related issues. From the start of this pandemic, India’s  approach has been worldwide. From safeguarding unfamiliar ex-pats caught in far-off nations to nursing the world through its vaccine diplomacy, WHO and IMF lauded India for contributing enormously in the battle against Coronavirus. Further,
QUAD is hoping to dispatch a far-reaching ‘vaccine program’ where vaccines will be created in the US, produced in India, Financed by Japan, and upheld by Australia. The pooling of individual limits and strength by the QUAD nations will assist worldwide vaccine delivery. It will help meet the demand-supply gap, zeroing in on the Indo-Pacific district particularly with the expertise of Australia & Japan for logistics in the Indo-Pacific. The Third  area of cooperation is climate change. It has been acquiring energy in Joe Biden’s homegrown and international strategy plan in the wake of rejoining Paris environment understanding. This region will attempt to corner china into conveying more, and working gatherings for environmental change are relied upon to be declared soon. The Fourth area is economic and technological cooperation which will focus on uplifting the supply chain of almost all the countries as It indirectly recognizes China as an economic and technological threat. China which produces 60% of the world’s rare earth will see tough competition, as the QUAD joins hands to build a rare earth procurement chain and counter china’s dominance, the Quad will also look dent china’s technological influence. France conducts ‘La Perouse’ Naval Exercise with QUAD members in Bay of Bengal, 5-7 April 2021. Reports of France driving the QUAD naval forces during the activity have come concede hypotheses of a QUAD-Plus’ structure and rising interest
from extra-local players.


It’s about 3.5 million square kilometers of waters broken exclusively by a couple of reefs shoals and rough islands. South china’s ocean is a marginal sea, which is important for the pacific sea. It is encircled by littoral states-china, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines, and Taiwan. Around 33% of the world’s global exchange goes through its water. It is vital as the ‘strait of Malacca’ associates the south china ocean with the Indian Ocean while the Formosa waterway interfaces the south china ocean with the east china ocean. Economies of southeast Asian nations intensely rely upon ports and free development of labor and products through exchange paths in the south China ocean. 33% of the world’s transportation goes through it, continuing $3 trillion in exchange every year.
South china’s ocean has enormous stores of oil and flammable gas, fisheries, ocean items, and different minerals. Every one of the littoral nations of this ocean needs to investigate  these reserves for economic development.



          “In the south china sea and underneath the south china sea, of course,
there’s a lot of raw materials. There are very rich fishing grounds, so there
are some economic concerns in the south china sea as well”
-Michael W. Michalak

Quad held its first gathering in Manila in 2007, seven months following the just initiated assembling of four majority rules systems, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith proclaimed Australia’s withdrawal from the Quad during a press readiness with his Chinese accomplice Yang Jiechi, without talking with India, Japan, or the US. The purpose for the withdrawal could be viewed as closer relations with China. In late 2007, China turned into Australia’s biggest trading partner, and in the accompanying 2 years, in 2009 china turned into Australia’s biggest export market. By 2017-18, China was by a wide margin the biggest trading partner of Australia, contributing nearly $194.6 billion worth of imports and  fares (generally of coal and mining). This made a specific sort of frightening monetary reliance on china as the consolidated worth of exchange with the US and Japan was not exactly that of China.

The Quad once again came in news leaders of all four members met on the sidelines of the  East Asia summit in Manila on November 11, 2017. Following 13 years, Australia rejoins the trilateral grouping of India, Japan, and the US. In 2020, Malabar maritime exercise saw the participation of Australia alongside the other quad members motioning to improve the security and safety maritime domain. 65% of  Australia’s international trade pass through the south china ocean and it focuses on the free routes and open exchange in the Indo-pacific area. Australia has been among the firmest adversaries of china’s regional cases toward the south china ocean. In July 2016, following the decision by a global council which held that china holds “no historical rights” toward the south china ocean dependent on the “nine-dash line” map, Australia gave a joint assertion with Japan and the US calling for China to keep the decision as “last and lawfully restricting on the two players.” Australia and India sign a ‘mutual logistics support arrangement’ at a vital summit on 4th June 2020. This will fortify participation in the indo-pacific and help construct military interoperability. During 2020 and early 2021 we have seen a trade brawl of sorts between China and Australia.
A conflict in which we have seen duties, demands, blacklists when china formalizes slice to Australian coal after Australia required a self-sufficient examination concerning the beginning of Coronavirus. Beijing forced taxes of 80 % on the crop after bilateral relations deteriorated. Australia revoked agreements signed under china’s belt and road initiative as it could reduce Australia’s influence in the region and also BRI to load up poorer countries with debt. This brought about the attenuation of bilateral ties between the two states. The connection between Beijing and Canberra is going through a difficult situation and this notwithstanding the way that two nations have joined the regional comprehensive economic partnership agreement which incorporates 15 nations in the region.
For India, Indo-Pacific addresses a free, open, comprehensive locale. In Shangri la exchange, 2018 PM Modi upheld the possibility of a rule-based, open balance, and stable trade environment in the Indo-pacific area, which lifts up every one of the countries on the tide of trade and investment. Sea-lane through south china ocean has been vital for India, for correspondence since the absolute starting point and entry has been unobstructed throughout the long term. India has historical rights established by practice and tradition to navigate the south china ocean without hindrance. Almost $200 billion of India’s exchange goes through the South China ocean. The security and safety of the Indian diaspora and their interest in the south china ocean area and East Asia is the obligation of the Indian state. Professor C. Raja Mohan has held ‘china’ as the principal factor behind India’s developing vicinity to the QUAD alliance to balance china’s tactical force for instance the boundary struggle in doklam and Ladakh, between two states. China has been sup- porting Pakistan on the Kashmir issue just as in cross-border terrorism at the UNSC.
India’s case to UNSC’s perpetual seat has additionally been hindered by china a few
times. Moving our concentration to India-china exchange, the regular act of unloading
dumping cheap items has destroyed Indian manufacturing. Consequently, India has
begun to expand its exchange and bringing down import reliance on china. Generally
significant, the Chinese military force in the Indian Ocean presented a danger to Indian
interests which include international rule-based order and free and open Indo-Pacific
India has been encircled by Chinese-created ports in the Indian Ocean locale to expand
its impact in the adjoining nations: Gwadar port in Pakistan, Hambantota port in Sri
Lanka, and Chittagong port in Bangladesh by a pearl necklace technique. Not just this,
China has expanded its essence in the horn of Africa by expanding the organization of
its deployment at its Djibouti base and subsequently has been proceeding to improve
its quality in IOR. Also, China has recovered one of the Maldivian islands-Feydhoo Finolhu                                              island, which is almost 600km from the Indian coast. It shows that China will face
challenges to ensure its energy supply lines and oceanic business.
Double hook strategy incorporates two
components Eastern Fishhook strategy
and the Western Fishhook strategy. As a
countermeasure, India expressed drawing
in its littoral partners which include formidable navies in the region including the
US, France, and Australia. As of late, India
has expanded defense engagement with
its eastern Indian sea neighbors which incorporate Indonesia and Australia, and island countries in the southern Indian
Ocean area which incorporates Mauritius,
Seychelles, Madagascar, and French regions spread across the Indian Ocean.
Andaman and Nicobar is the tip of the Eastern Fishhook Strategy, India is investigating the chance of redesigning the facilities in Andaman and Nicobar island so as to project its power in the bay of Bengal and close to Malacca straits. The Indian government has begun upgrdation of Andaman and Nicobar islands which incorporates developing jetties, deep-sea harbor, and extending landing strips to facilitate the landing of Maritime surveillance aircraft. There is likewise a chance of creating holders for the positioning of the Sukhoi-20 MKI airplane consistently. The CDS has effectively implied the way that it will be a joint order of the three administrations and furthermore it will be a meeting point for the quad powers which would fill in as an edge if there should arise
an occurrence of activity against China. In June 2002, India has marked MLSA with Australia which will offer help for maritime reconnaissance missions attempted by the two nations with the utilization of their island offices. Aside from Australia, India has additionally marked a port development project with an ASEAN country- Indonesia. It has consented to foster regular citizen and military facilities in the Sabang port which is situated at the northern tip of the pro archipelago. This acts as the first fishhook strategy spanning across the western Indian Ocean.
The Western Fishhook strategy began from Duqm port in Aman where India has entered into a maritime transport agreement and gas gained access facility for the Indian navy. Indias has likewise been working with regard to entering a concurrence with Djibouti to benefit the strategic help in the horn of Africa. Further India has expanded its commitment with Mauritius, Seychelles, and Madagascar. It is likewise giving help to these nations through training and visiting of ships as well as giving them coastal radar systems and few fast attack crafts. It would help India in countering Chinese exercises undertaken by unmanned submersibles and will likewise imply that Chinese advances into the Indian Ocean will be seen and countered by the Indian naval force with QUAD
nations. In March 2020, India was acknowledged as an observer in the Indian Ocean Commission, this passage was worked with by France. This reinforced the ascent of the ‘Double fishhook strategy’ by India which is countermeasure against china’s “string of pearl’s strategy.
It is an essential success for India as it will boost ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat.’ In the scenery
of evolving international affairs, India can decide how worldwide unions would work out
over the long haul for her. The country had taken a huge turn in its strategy for the subcontinent
by joining the gathering. The QUAD furnishes India with an amazing stage to
propel its advantage in East Asia and strengthen the act easy policy. It will extend India’s
binds with ember nations, with benefits in diplomatic leverage and sharing of burden
in defense. Additionally, QUAD will furnish the country with a critical possibility in
molding the US policies in Afghanistan-Pakistan to the benefit of the nation and will
help India counter the belt and road initiative (BRI), especially because of the China-Pakistan
economic corridor. In the midst of the US-China exchange war in the south china
ocean, ASEAN anticipates durable responsibilities from India later on. ASEAN wants to
collectively encourage progressively incredible china to seek after essential interests in
a real manner, and on the basis of respect for international law, in the south china
ocean, by the inclusion of India in Indo-Pacific affairs.
Japan, during India-japan vital discourse in 2006, Prime minister Shinzo Abe uncovered
the term Indo-Pacific in a talk passed on at Indian parliament in august 2007. Named
“Confluence of the Two Seas,” It displayed japan’s vision of the Indo-Pacific as an area
based on basic qualities. The Senkaku Islands debate concerns a regional argument
about a gathering of uninhabited islands knows as the Diaoyu islands in individuals’ republic
of china, senkaku islands in Japan. China has forcefully begun to police the waters
off the Japanese-regulated senkaku islands (Diaoyutai islands). Japan has endorsed
a bill to change the name of island containing senkaku islands from Tonoshiro to
Tonoshiro Senkaku. This position was upheld by the USA as the two countries have a
mutual defense treaty. New indications of pressures are as yet industrious in the east
china ocean. In late February 2021, two Chinese coastguard vessels more than once
entered japan’s regional squanders and moved toward a Japanese fishing boat close to
the islands. Besides, two other Chinese vessels, one furnished with an autocannon,
were cruising right external japan’s regional waters close senkakus. This can be viewed
as a possible clash between two countries. Nov 18, 2021, Australia and Japan sign a
landmark defense deal (Reciprocal access agreement)to counter China’s developing
impact in the south china ocean. This deal will allow their forces to train in each other’s
territory, as both countries seek to navigate tensions with increasingly assertive China.
The in-principle agreement reached during Australian prime minister Scott Morrison’s
visit to Tokyo was relied upon to pave the way for increased defense cooperation and
joint exercises between Japan and Australia. Japan has recently marked just a single
comparable arrangement, with its key partner the US, in 1960. When RAA is approved
by Japan’s parliament, the agreement will mark the first time in 60 years that Tokyo has
approved a deal permitting foreign troops to operate on its soil.
Also, Japan is ready for any future danger as Japan’s maritime self-defense forcer, the
coastguard holds a joint drill on March 3, 2021. This accordingly, could arise as a test
for the Biden organization’s security commitment to one of Washington’s most significant
partners in the locale.
China is japan’s greatest trading partner under ordinary conditions. Be that as it may,
imports from china drooped by practically half in February as the Coronavirus covered
production lines. This in turn starved Japanese manufacturers of necessary components.
The government’s panel on future investment talked about the requirement for
the assembling of high-added esteem items to be moved back to Japan and for the
production of other goods to be diversified across southeast Asia. Japan offers subsidies
of $2.2 Billion for the organizations who might move production out of China returned
and shift to Japan, India, and Bangladesh or significantly other ASEAN nations
came to be known as the “Exit China Subsidy” program. Subsequently, boosting financial
ties in the south china ocean. In a transition to counter china’s strength of the store
network in the indo-pacific area, the exchange pastor of India, Japan, and Australia on
April 2021 officially launched the supply chain resilience initiative (SCRI) in a virtual trilateral
ministerial meeting. The SCRI plans to make an idealistic pattern of upgrading
enhancing supply chain resilience so as to ultimately achieving strong, sustainable, balanced,
and inclusive growth in the region. Expansion of the SCRI maybe is considered
based on consensus.
Under President Barack Obama, there was a remarkable change in the US strategy in
the Asia-Pacific knows as a pivot to Asia. In 2011, state secretary Hillary Clinton noticed
that the US should be “smart and systematic” when contributing its time and assets.
Obama’s international strategy was featured by the “Asia rebalance” strategy
which he divulged in a discourse to the Australian parliament in November 2011, three
years into his initial term. In it, Obama announced that the U.S. was a “Pacific Nation”
and would move its international strategy center to Asia from the middle east. the new
approach was aimed at reasserting U.S. leadership in the region and military checking a
rapidly emerging China in order to tap into Asians rapidly growing economy. Mr. Cambell
was the person who drove this arrangement under this, US naval deployment from
the Atlantic to the pacific strengthened alliances with Japan, South Korea, Australia,
and strategic partners such as India, and paved the way for Obama’s speech in Australia.
Obama became the first sitting U.S. president to visit Myanmar in 2012, the year
the southeast Asian country moved to civilian rule, and also became a formal member
of the East Asia Summit. Some success thus could be claimed. However, Obama policy
shifted More towards the middle east and Europe from south Asia and thus the US ignored
Chinese dominance in the south china sea. China began attesting its dominance
in the south china sea on different reefs, islands and solidified its control of Scarborough
sandbar in 2012. The U.S. failed to halt its naval build-up in the area, including the
construction of military facilities.
After the shift in power, Donald Trump took an extreme
position towards China. In 2017, the Trump administration
gave shape to the long-pending !QUAD” coalition,
mainly to develop a new strategy to keep the critical
sea routes into the indo-pacific free of any influence.
From the principal year itself, the exchange war began
speeding up among China and the US. Both compromised
each other to force new levies and increment existing
ones. China being a manufacturing superpower
was at receiving end as the USA was hoping to remove
china from the tech supply line and bring different players
like Taiwan, South Korea, Vietnam ready. Be that as
it may, Trump pulled out from comprehensive and progressive
agreement for trans-pacific partnership
(CPTPP) which was a setback for the US economy, as
it solidifies china’s geopolitical ambition in the region
This arrangement incorporates 2.1 Billion individuals,
with RCEP’s individuals representing around 30% of
worldwide GDP. In any case, the USA put $328.8 billion
in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)
in the year 2017 alone. No group of nations has benefitted
more from the presence of the US in the region other than ASEAN.
In April 2018, Trump divulges plans for 25% extra taxes on $50 billion of Chinese imports.
During 2018-19, the Trump organization sped up its endeavors to boycott Chinese
organizations by putting them on the entity list, adding somewhere in the range of
70 additional companies and organizations. In 2019, Washington reconsidered its fare
control runs multiple times to target Huawei. In December 2019, U.S starts to mollify its
position on taxes and J2020 signed a phase one trade agreement with China. In any
case, an episode of Covid which transformed into a worldwide pandemic crumbled the
connection between the US and china severely. Trump was seen censuring china a few
times for the episode. In August 2020, the US lifts the “clean network” strategy in an
attempt to exclude Chinese vendors in cloud servers, mobiles, infrastructure, and apps.
Moreover, India-US. 2+2 Dialogue, the third 2+2 dialogue between the two countries
and focused on security cooperation for ramping defense-related activities.
The new U.S administration under President Joe Biden was seen as more rational
than its predecessor, however, its intense approach on china is probably going to proceed.
Tony Blinken, Biden’s candidate for secretary of state, said at his Senate affirmation
hearing that he would take an extreme position on China, which he called “the top
priority.” For Biden, indo-pacific means securing free and open access in the south china
sea. In an impression of the bipartisan agreement in Washington that progressively
forceful china must be reined in, Biden has upped the ante by raising human-rights
concerns, with Donald Trump largely ignored until the final months of his presidency.
For instance, while organizing joint western activity to penalize China for its Muslim gulag,
secretary of state Antony Blinken proclaimed that Beijing “keeps on perpetrating
slaughter and violations against humankind in Xinjiang.” In 2017, the Trump organization
revived the QUAD, which had been lying lethargic for a very long time. Presently, at
Biden’s drive, the QUAD chiefs held their first-historically speaking highest point in the
walk, 2021. The summit was testament to the fact that the Biden administration inherited
a coherent and realist strategy on the Indo-Pacific, with the QUAD at its core. The
surprise from the Biden-initiated QUAD summit was that-unlike the past meetings of
the QUAD foreign ministers- it yielded a joint statement, which articulated a clear-eyed
Across the board, we can say that the United States appreciates maritime predominance,
freedom of navigation, security commitments to regional states in South East
Asia. American military presence has managed the cost of ASEAN nations the chance
to seek after economic prosperity without a significant expansion in their own safeguard
consumptions. The Indo-pacific has succeeded under American authority for the
past 40 years.
Since 2006, China has been progressively decisive about its advantage in the pacific
locale, however, the development has its own difficulties. China’s forceful position on
the ‘Nine-Dash Line’ in the South China Sea is now notable to the world. China claims,
improving relations with pacific island countries are just a consequence of their increasing
economic powers, but analysts believe that it comes from china’s desire to become
a world superpower. The islands in the pacific seas are arranged into three significant
gatherings Malaysia, Micronesia, and Polynesia. Customarily the international relations
of this district were firmly connected with the US and Australia. The US keeps various
army installations in the pacific. After The Second Great War, the western nations didn’t
give a lot of consideration to the pacific. The locale was back in the concentrate solely
after china’s presence increased. The first and foremost objective of Beijing’s pacific
policy is to replace the USA in the pacific region as a regional hegemony. Once established,
china’s prevailing situation in the pacific locale would permit her to challenge US
military capacities. Second, China has consistently been trying to weaken the Taiwanese
state by wielding influence on her diplomatic allies and poaching them in favor
of her own. The Third objective of china’s pacific policy is to expand the Chinese alliance
worldwide in order to generate greater bargaining powers at the international level.
Therefore, with the exception of Papua new guinea, all island nations in the pacific
locale have become significant exchange accomplices of China. The enormous loaning
by china has additionally gotten Chinese state-possessed organizations as critical
“competitors to the local companies.” It is expected that utilizing her ‘Debt Trap Diplomacy’
china would attempt to set up army installations in the locales. As per the New
York Times article, china played a comparable stunt on account of Hambantota port in
Srilanka. Besides, India has been a significant part of the Indian Ocean as well however
china needed to change the status quo through her Belt and Road initiative (BRI)
On first January 2013, china gives another guide, which interestingly set apart exhaustively
in excess of 130 islands, reefs, shoals in the south china ocean that Beijing claims
inside U-shaped lines. China’s claims over the south china sea and Chinese occupation
in regional waters and islands of adjoining nations are violations of UNCLOS. China, in
any case, dismissed the 2016 arbitral rule as it advances its claim base on the argument
that the SCS and the islands within this body of water have been in the Chinese
possession for centuries dating back as far as the Han Dynasty in the second century
AD. China has been manufacturing proof of history as an apparatus for snatching this
region. It has been attempting to affirm its predominance through ‘The nine-dash line’
which alludes to the vague, ambiguously found, boundary line utilized by China for their
claims of the significant piece of the south china ocean. The challenged region in the
south china sea includes the parcel islands, the Spratly islands, parts islands, the Macclesfield
Bank, and the Scarborough Shoal. The claim encompasses the area of Chinese
land reclamation knows as the “great wall of sand.”
In the first half of 2020, naval forces have rammed a Vietnamese fishing boat, buzzed a
Philippines naval vessel, and harassed a Malaysian oil drilling operation all within their
respective EEZ’s. Simultaneously, ASEAN overtook the European Union to turn into
china’s largest trading partner in the first quarter of 2020, and China is the third-largest
investor (4150 billion) in ASEAN.
US-China Rivalry has demanded a cost for Southeast Asian nations. China is introducing
a parallel decision to southeast Asia to pick among China and the USA in the midst
of a trade war between these countries. China is likewise planning to make an authoritative
reach through economic statecraft and military modernization. The greatest danger
from the Chinese army installations will be looked at by these Southeast Asian nations
as they will indeed become playgrounds of enormous superpowers. In the Pacific
assertion, Samoa is the main illustration of china’s debt-trap diplomacy as china represents
as much as 40% obligation of this little island country.

Australia, Japan, India, and the United States have totally legitimate concerns about
China. It will be uncomfortable living with all the more powerful china. Furthermore, it is
similarly genuine for them to support by coordinating in the Quadrilateral Security Dialog,
casually knowns as QUAD. Lamentably, the QUAD probably won’t modify the direction
of Asian history for two basic reasons: First, the four have diverse international
interests and weaknesses. Second, they may be in some unacceptable game. The
enormous vital game in Asia isn’t military but economic. “All the more extensively, the
alleged ‘Quadrilateral’ isn’t taking off.”
Australia is the most vulnerable. Its economy is profoundly reliant upon China. Australians
have been pleased with their astounding thirty years of recession-free growth.
That happened simply because Australia turned out to be practical, a financial area of
china: in 2018-2019, 33 percent went to China, though just 5% went to the US. The issue
for Canberra is that China holds the greater part of the cards. Power in international
relations lies with the country that can impose high costs on another country at a low
cost to itself. This is how China can deal with Australia. India remains ambivalent about
the U.S. agenda on china and will hedge in any activism against china. A rapprochement
between Japan and china Is additionally proof… so Japan isn’t pursuing any program
of control of China. Various vis-à-vis experiences among Chinese and Indian
troopers in June 2020 have spread a wave of hostility to china notion. While India has
unmistakably solidified its situation in china since 2019 because of the boundary debate,
border dispute, it is, however, unlikely to become a clear U.S. ally. Japan, is also
vulnerable but in a different way. Japan, is additionally helpless however in an alternate
way. Australia is lucky to have well-disposed neighbors in the relationship of
Southeast Asian Nations. Japan just has antagonistic neighbors: China, Russia, South
Korea. It has troublesome, even tense, relations with each of the three. It can oversee
relations with Russia and South Korea as both have more modest economies however
the Japanese are intensely mindful that they currently need to conform to considerably
more remarkable china once more. Yet this is not a new phenomenon. Except for the
primary portion of the twentieth century, Japan has almost always lived in peace with
its more powerful neighbor China. “The Soviet Union lost the cold war because the U.S.
economy could vastly outspend it.” Similarly, just as the United Stated presented china
with a major geopolitical gift by withdrawing from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
trade agreement in 2017. India also did major geopolitical favor by not joining the Regional
Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). Economics is where the big
game is playing. With the united state’s ecosystem out of TPP and India out of RCEP, a
massive economic ecosystem centered on china is evolving in the region. It is suggested
that Biden should promptly move to fill the Jakarta-based ambassadorship to
ASEAN that has long sat vacant. In addition, the U.S. needs to show a willingness to
cooperate with ASEAN-led international conferences, such as by having Biden take
part in the East Asia Summit, which Trump never attended.
FOUR LETTERS IN QUAD. Here’s one statistic to ponder on: In 2009, the size of the
retail merchandise market in china was $1.8 trillion contrasted and $4 trillion for that
market in the US. After ten years, the respective numbers were $6 trillion and $5.5 trillion.
China’s complete imports in the coming decade will probably surpass $22 trillion.
Similarly as the gigantic U.S. consumer market during the 1970s and 1980s crushed
the soviet union, the monstrous and developing Chinese customer market will be eventually
the choice of the large international game. Across the board, QUAD needs to
make a shift from the military alliance to economic alliances.
For almost 16 years, the QUAD failed to go beyond being a talking shop. Its promises
did not translate into action on the ground. But this time, four clear and specific areas
of cooperation have been identified and again the four countries have gathered to stabilize
the strategies that would guarantee open balance and a stable trade environment
in the Indo-pacific region. QUAD doesn’t fear the Chinese economic rise but wants to
contain china’s hyper-nationalism move which more or less is asserting its dominance
in the region. Apropos to the current scenario, it can be noted that QUAD is emerging
as one of the most important groupings of four democracies which will counterbalance
the increasingly aggressive behavior in the south china sea, which will somehow benefit
the Southeast Asian countries.

The Indo-Pacific: What’s in a Name?

The Delhi-Beijing battle in South Asia

Economics of Terrorism

As an economist, I am hardwired to believe that people respond to incentives. What possible incentive could there be to convince someone to end their lives for a cause? In this piece, I hope to peer into the economics of terrorism. As is with all activities in the globalist world, terrorism also requires resources. There are multiple options and sources and in the interest of remaining politically neutral, I do not wish to name any.
Conventional wisdom and ‘experts’ in the media help us think that terrorists come from low-income households, have poor education and no understanding of what they are doing. However, a pioneer in the field, Alan Bruegel burned through Hezbollah newsletters to find out that a good majority of terrorists come from middle to high-income households, have a high school or college education, and appear to be smarter than average. So, if illiteracy or ignorance are not the motivation to be a terrorist, then what is? What motivates these people?
Political Scientist Ethan Mesquite argues for a model of terrorism where the high standards for terrorists arise from a specific selection process to ensure competent people join the abortionist. In periods of low economic activity and absence of employment opportunities, a terrorist abortionist has its pick of qualified and bright recruits. Papers published in 2012 by Bilberry, Béchamel and Keillor show a positive relation between slow economic periods and quality of terrorist recruits. So what motivates terrorists? The answer is scarily profound, yet intuitive. The same thing that motivates you to wake up at 7 for your 9 A.M. job. Will raising employment opportunities eradicate terrorism? There is no way to tell.
Is there a way to conclusively predict terrorist in a large data pool without succumbing to biases and stereotypes? Despite many efforts, only so much has been made public about the econometric research behind this, for various security reasons. Surprisingly, factors that seem to have no relation to terrorist activity are education, marital status, employment or proximity to a mosque. Ones that did show major relations to terrorist activity are; the extensive use of cash, changing addresses more often than normal, regular wire transfers to offshore entities and surprisingly purchasing life insurance. Life insurance does not cover suicide, so why would bombers or terrorists buy life insurance? Based on the factors listed above and a few more confidential variables, an algorithm was created to fish out terrorists. The success or failure of which remain unknown as we cannot count prevented attacks statistically.
Terrorism is effective because of the long-reaching after-effects it has on society. You are five times more likely to commit suicide than to die in a terrorist attack. Road accidents grew in number in the USA post 9/11. This was because people decided to drive out of the fear of flying. The xenophobia and general fear in the populace are costlier with respect to the direct impact of the attack. In terrorism, you succeed even if you fail. Another important facet of the economic cost of terrorism is the shift in focus from crime to terrorism, which leads to a boom in crime rates (also visible after the 9/11 attacks).
I  conclude by pointing out that after reducing terrorism and mass destruction of people and property to a few grim numbers and variables, terrorism remains as threatening as it initially was. Although some countermeasures are available, there is work to be done in the field. The aftereffects remain as devastating as they initially were.
Submitted by –
NEH Ra mesh


The power to hurt-the sheer unaquisitive, unproductive power to destroy things that somebody treasures, to inflict pain and grief-is a kind of bargaining power, not easy to use but often used”.
Thomas C. Shelling.
The early twenty-first century encountered numerous insurgencies and counter-insurgency warfares.Terrorism stands for the calculated use of violence to create a general climate of fear in population and thereby to bring about a particular political objective. Our news feed is always flooded with one or the other terrorist activities worldwide which the international community is trying to bring on track since the inception of the term. Counter Terrorism operations highlight the use of productive and jointed efforts in halting the spread of terror amongst civilians. Strategic strikes have taken the forefront in these operations whenever possible. Modern Offensive Air power is suitable with his decisive technologies and strategies to the conventional warfare, but when it comes to counter-insurgency operations, modern air power comes with a few limitations.
This paper shall highlight in detail the fundamentals of offensive air power in detail, while trying to answer to questions of Pros and Cons related to the use of Offensive Air Power in Countering terrorist operations. What are the specific obligations involved in doing so implying to a country’s security policy? Further, this paper shall examine the strength, weaknesses and roles involved in Air-power operations in the light of countering terrorist attacks.
Keywords: Air Power, Counter-Insurgency, Terrorism, U.S.A, Pakistan, India.
The Terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 (9/11) posed a signal for the awakening of the world, which destroyed two most important symbols of the American Culture, being a super power. President Bush announced to the terrified and outraged nation that –“Freedom and Democracy are under attack”, and formally inaugurated the war against terror. Air power provides a flexible, timely strike capability, including a new generation of highly discriminate weapons. (Phinney).
Since 11 September 2001, trans-national terrorism has assumed a greater significance in the minds of the defence planners. Subsequent events, such as the attack in Bali, London and Jakarta are evident , that the issue of terrorism has a long way to go , before letting it go completely. Despite use of air power  in countering terrorist threats, the application of contemporary air power capabilities is highly being questioned in combating terrorist threats. (Murthy, 2008)
These new versions of terrorism are associated with Al Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) , which pose a great threat to both the interest and security of individual nations and also questions the life span of the civilians residing in a particular country. Many terrorist activities have crossed borders, thus framing the name of transnational terrorism and posing new variations of questions for the security and defence of the Global Community. (Sam Gray).
India used Air power as  a defence mechanism for the first time in a less then war scenario- crossing the Line of Control (LoC) , on an offensive attack mission inside Pakistan for the first time since the 1971 Indo-Pak War. (Khosla, 2020)
This paper shall discuss thoroughly the use of offensive air power in major counter terrorist operations in countries of USA, Pakistan and India and their co-relation with one another. It shall further pin point the risk factors involved in use of Offensive air power and what are the major challenges faced by the Military  and defence in successfully accomplishing their missions.

IMAGE SOURCE: Rand Corporation (
Counter Terrorism, known as Anti-Terrorism, incorporates the practice, military tactics, techniques and strategy that government, military, law enforcement, business and intelligence agencies use to combat, counter or prevent terrorism. Counter Terrorism operations reflect the government’s strategy to neutralize terrorists, their organizations, and their networks in order to render them incapable of using violence to instill fear and to coerce the citizens and the government as a whole.
INDIA: According to the reports of the Human Rights Watch , the Indian Government is using  counterterrorism operations to silence peaceful dissenters, human rights activists and journalists. On October 28 and 29,2020, the authorities carried out several raids on the offices of nongovernmental organizations, activists, homes and newspaper office in Jammu and Kashmir, Delhi and Bangalore. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) , which conducted the raids, has accused the targeted groups that they have collected funds from the people in the name of Charitable purposes and at the end used it for  carrying out secessionist and separatist activities in Jammu and Kashmir. (India: Counter Terrorism Raids Targetting Peacfeul Critics:Stop UNlawful OPerations Against Kashmir& Other Right Groups , Oct 30,2020)
After the Mumbai attack in 2008. India’s security and  police forces appeared to be quite fragmented in security lines. India has emerged as one of the world’s most consistent targets for the Islamists militants and therefore India has consistently tried to build up its Counter-Terrorism mechanism to deal with future attacks.(Paul) The Indian Army has undertaken sub-conventional operations, specially counter insurgency and  counter-terrorism operations over past 60 years.
USA: One of the many hallmarks of the Trump administration has been its capricious approach to troops deployments, especially ones related to counter terrorism. His administration has threatened to pull out U.S. Forces from Iraq as a way to pressure the government there to rein in  Iran- backed militia groups. The 2018 National Defence Strategy  made a clear  declaration that Inter-State Strategic Competition and not Terrorism is the ultimate goal  in U.S. national security. In addition to exerting ongoing pressures on terrorist organizations, American forces enable intelligence collection-especially in hostile environments and provide the means to conduct swift action against individuals and networks involved in plotting, directing or attempting  to inspire attacks against the United States. A military counter-terrorism presence can   facilitate activities conducted by civilian departments and agencies as well as make U.S partners more effective. When it comes to resourcing America’s counter-terrorism operations, it is important to distinguish   financial resources from   the people and platforms  that money pays for.
There are an estimated 8,500 troops in Afghanistan, 3,000 in Iraq and smaller numbers in Syria Somalia ,Yemen etc ,mainly working with local partners and conducting direct action strikes to supplement these indigenous efforts of U.S military in the name of Counter-Terrorism Operations. (Tankel, Sep 28, 2020)
NATO COUNTRIES:  Terrorism in its all forms poses a threat to the security and peace of the NATO countries and to international stability and prosperity. NATO’s specific focus in counter-terrorism operations includes improving awareness of the threat,  developing  capabilities to prepare and respond, and enhancing engagement with partner countries and other international actors.
NATO’s counter-terrorism policy guidelines focuses on three main areas- awareness, capabilities and engagement. NATO also has a Terrorist Intelligence Cell at NATO Headquarters and also a Coordinator oversees NATO’s efforts in the fight against terrorism. A regional hub  for the South, based at NATO’s Joint Force Command in Naples helps the Alliance anticipate and respond to crisis arising in its Southern neighbourhood. NATO is also a member of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS and support it through AWACS Intelligence Flights. NATO develops new technologies and strategies year by year, upgrading and coping with the changing dynamics of Global Terrorism , to tackle quite precisely and wisely the consequences of a terrorist attack. NATO cooperates with international partners and organizations to leverage  the full potential of each stalk holder engaged in the global counter terrorism effort. (Countering Terrorism, 2019)
PAKISTAN:  Pakistan adopted its counter-terrorism strategy right after the 9/11 attack, claiming that  it has failed in uprooting the terrorist network of Pakistan based militant Jihadi and extremist groups, which also have links with Al- Qaeda. Since the 9/11 attack , Pakistan has been facing a series of  anti state terrorism and sectarian violence , torn apart by the home based Jihadi and Extremist terrorists groups shuttering off the hard earned democracy of the country. The militant groups have now turned against Pakistan and its people. Internal Security has collapsed to the extent that- General Ashfaq Parvez Kalyani , Pakistan’s Chief of Army in his 14th August 2012 speech highlighted that – “internal threat is bigger than the external one”.
The counter-terrorism policy of Pakistan, highly focuses on combating Taliban existence and also collaborating with other groups to hault external threat from India and also Afghanistan. While Pakistan’s counter terrorism strategy has proven ineffective in overthrowing the home grown terrorist network, the success of the strategy highly depends upon the major shift in its national policy.
Pakistan has employed both military and non-military strategies to deal with the terrorists. The military strategies includes heavy handed security options against militants in the tribal areas and  low intensity operations against Al Qaeda and Talibans. The non-military strategies include engagements in the form of peace deals and introduction of various anti-terrorism legislations in the shape of presidential acts and  parliamentary laws.  Some major reasons for  presence of low backup of counter-terrorism force in Pakistan is its- strategic interest in the region, skewed civil-military relations and  lack of national consensus on the ownership on “war on terror”. Pakistan can improve its security by transforming itself into a welfare state and also at the same time engaging into peaceful relations with the neighbours respecting their sovereignty. (Ahmed, 2014)
Air Power has a key role to play in today’s counter insurgency operations, but its role take a quite new turn when it comes to conventional warfare.  During the Kosovo air campaign of 1999 and the conduct of the conventional phase of both recent Iraq Wars, it was quite evident how air power managed in bringing about a decisive victory. The traditional functions of air power-hitting critical targets deep below the enemy’s lines, destroying command and control functionality and suppressing the enemy’s strength to sustain and deploy his forces. (Beck)
Counter-Terrorism tasks involve intelligence collection, monitoring communications, surveillance on specific locations, tracking terrorist movements and getting insider information to launch a ore-determined strike on terror locations, hideouts etc. Air Power has the constitutional capacity to further each of these tasks quite comprehensively. Air Power performs two main tasks- i.e. prevention and response as depicted by the aerial strike on the Jaish-r-Mohammed terror camp in Belakot on 26 February 2019.While the strike was  in response to  the Pakistani backed suicide attack on a CRPF Convoy on Pulwama , it was also aimed in preventing future attacks by killing Jaish-e-Mohammed operatives and destroying their training camps. (Rai, 2020)
INDIA:  Around 3,000 terrorists awaits for the standoff over the LOC , while Pakistan and India shares a very old relationship on the violence and terror front, while the new burning topic of Jammu and Kashmir heats up the situation by killing around numerous civilians and security forces personnel.
Airborne platforms provide a firm support to counter-terror ground operations, for tracking targets, situational awareness and target designation for strikes by armed helicopters , armed UAV’s make the most significant contribution by enhancing the timelines of battlefield information and situation development. For targeting and tracking terrorists our security forces must be enabled to receive real time images and videos streamed from UAVs and other sensors directly  on to their patrol vehicles. This would bring the overall  picture to them for planning their counter terror actions. (Rai, 2020)
India struck Jaish-e-Mohammed’s (JeM) biggest camp in Pakistan  early Tuesday in a major  “non-military pre-emptive” action, killing a large number of terrorists and trainers of the Pakistan based terror group which, a top official said, was preparing to carry out suicide attacks in the country. In this operation of India at Balakot , a very large number of JeM’s terrorists, trainers and senior commanders and groups of jihadis who were being trained for fidayeen action were eliminated. A total of 16 aircraft, six each armed with Spice 2000 and Crystal Maze missiles, flew into Pok and struck Belakot terror camp while 4 remaining in Indian territory as back-up. (Indian Air Force Strike in Balakot, 2019)
U.S.A:   The United States on April 14, 1996, launched Operation El Dorado Canyon , a successful mission that hit Col.  Muammar Qaddafi squarely between the eyes. Working with carrier aircraft of the US Sixth Fleet, Air Force F-111s of the 48th  Tactical Fighter Wing flew what turned out to be the longest fighter combat mission in history. (Buyne, 1999)
The United States Air Force Perform the following functions in Counter Terrorism Operations:
1)Provide Surveillance Platforms, operations and analysts
2)Base operating support personnel and equipment to provide vital functions, such as communications, housing and transportation at a wide range of operating locations
3)Humanitarian relief assets, including engineers, doctors etc. (Ochmanek, 2003)
Pakistan: When terrorism from non-state actors started threatening the peace and security of the country, Pakistani Air force (PAF)  started  its  counter-terrorism operations for the first time. Air operations by PAF  against militants in FATA were first conducted in Operation Al-Mizan in 2004 on a limited scale.
In January 2008, PAF undertook operations in support of Pakistan Army in South Waziristan under code name Operation Tri Star. PAF fighter jets provided the capability to reach quickly from operational bases, reaching anywhere in FATA, within minutes.
These counter-terrorist missions were first of a kind conducted by the air force which bore fruit and highlighted the importance of air power in these kind of operations , where PAF has been playing a commendable role and shall continue to play until and unless they succeed in bringing back the peace and stability in entire Pakistan and also the entire region. (Kirmani)
Air power offers numerous advantages when conducting counter-insurgency warfare due to its ability to cover large distances and react quickly with overwhelming force. However as rightly stated all things come with its specific limitations , so does the use of Air Power. Many of the traditional roles of Air Power considered  to be the cornerstone of air power theory are instead questionable and are less effective in counter- insurgency operations. Strategic bombings may be effective in isolated cases, but the smaller number of targets and the nature of insurgency  will not make it decisive.
Targeted killing may be useful in certain situations, but the most effective roles for offensive air-power in counter-insurgency warfare are interdiction  and CAS. Interdiction degrades the adversary’s ability  to command and control its forces and also make its resupply more difficult. The enemy is forced to adapt by avoiding the overt movements of large numbers for long periods of time, as they are vulnerable to attack. The availability of CAS further enables friendly forces to be deployed in more areas throughout the theatre, thus working in support of the fundamental counter-insurgency policies.
The quantum of risks and benefits of Air Power in counter-insurgency warfare can also be analysed by focussing on the tools required to apply offensive air power practically and successfully throughout the battlespace. While evaluating the suitability of offensive air power tools in counter-insurgency warfare, the following factors should be considered-

  • Ubiquity– offensive air power much be able to operate throughout the battle space.
  • Speed– offensive air power must be able to respond rapidly to situations on the ground.
  • Firepower– offensive air power must possess the capability to destroy or neutralise potential target sets.
  • Survivability– vulnerability to attack must be minimised or eliminated.

The benefits should be accelerated and the risk factors should be decreased. BY understanding how platforms, sensors  and weapons can be applied to the counter-insurgency campaign , a more coherent and  effective strategy for the employment of offensive air power should be employed. (R.Grisson)
Worldwide air-power is being used very often in NWNP environment. For the future also , aerospace power will be invariably be the weapon of choice. A potent aerospace force has to be ready to deliver decisive blows at a very short notice, with precision and minimal collateral damage. A potent aerospace force has to be ready to deliver decisive blows at very short notice, with precision and minimal collateral damage. In this condition, availability of artificial intelligence, high-speed weapons and space-based sensors and tools will have a significant impact. Besides imbibing new technologies, innovation in use of existing capability would be the need of the hour.
This needs to be planned beforehand and the plans need to be reviewed and refined periodically with changes in circumstances and fresh intelligence inputs. Aerospace in the future should focus specifically on enhancing battle space transparency by keeping greater area under multiple sensor surveillance with better resolution. Weapons needs to be smart and standoff capacity should be prioritised.
Media engagement plan and organisational structure needs to be in place  for perception management and giving out the narrative . While creating structures individually to provide the information in desired format, all stake holders need to work collectively in sync with each other. (R.Grisson)
It cannot be denied that insurgent methods of air warfare will remain in effect by the adversaries which shall provide them with distinct advantages. First, they negate much of the combat power of the west, particularly from air power perspective and secondly, insurgent methods are well suited to attacking the opposition’s will to fight such campaigns.
The nature of counter-insurgency warfare needs to be incorporated into air power doctrine so that air planners and operators at all levels  understand the risks, damages and benefits of employing offensive air power in the counter- insurgency environment. The suitability of various forms of equipment used in the employment of air power must be developed to better fulfil the roles required to support a counter-insurgency campaign.  The capacity of sensors to identify targets correctly from sufficient stand-off distances will also help in reducing the chance of fratricide or the targeting of innocents. Low yield weapons should be developed to reduce collateral damage.
The application of offensive air power in counter-insurgency operations should be given equal importance as the attention is given to the use of offensive air power in conventional warfare. The roles of offensive air power in counter-insurgency operations needs joint development from the outset, reducing the need for procedures to be developed hurriedly at the tactical level during the campaign. To achieve the greatest possible effect with the least probable chances of risk factors in the use of offensive use of air power in counter insurgency warfare- a focused, coordinated and dedicated  effort is necessary .
The counter-insurgency warfare poses numerous threats  for offensive air power- A counter insurgency war fare  is likely to last long and military is just one factor in it. A broad strategy is required to succeed and any military involvement must be compatible with it. For applying offensive air power in any context, analysing well its strengths and weaknesses is quite necessary.
When offensive air power is used against insurgents it needs to be done carefully, as poor tactical application may work against strategic goals. Incorrect targeting and collateral damage can have  a very negative impact on the hearts and minds of the target population.
Air power delivers its effects using platforms, sensors and weapons. The suitability of equipment          in supporting  counter-insurgency air power roles will be related to how well it can enhance its power’s  positive attributes while minimising its negative effects.
Currently, air power doctrine is not focussing on counter-insurgency warfare  and its principles.
Offensive air power can play an important role in counter-insurgency warfare, but its advantages will not be maximised until these issues are addressed.
Ahmed, N. (2014). Pakistan’s Counter Terrorism strategy & its Implications for domestic, regional n& international Security. HAL.
Beck, W. C. Offensive Air Power in Counter-Insurgency Operations. Royal Audtralian Air Force:Air Power Development Centre.
Buyne, W. J. (1999). El Doredo Canyon. Air Force Magazine .
(2019). Countering Terrorism. NATO/OTAN.
(Oct 30,2020). India: Counter Terrorism Raids Targetting Peacfeul Critics:Stop UNlawful OPerations Against Kashmir& Other Right Groups . Human Rights Watch.
(2019). Indian Air Force Strike in Balakot. THE HINDU.
Khosla, A. (2020). Offensive Use of Air POwer in No War No peace Situation.
Kirmani, H. (n.d.). Pakistan’s Offensive Air-Power in Counter-Terrorism OPerations. Hilai English .
Murthy, S. G. (2008). Air- Power and Trans-National Terrorism :The Possibilities , Advantages & Limits to Using Austraian AirPower in the War on Terror. Air POwer Development Centre .
Ochmanek, D. (2003). Military OPerations Against Terror Groups Aroad: Implication For THe United States Air Forces. RAND .
Phinney, D. (2007). Air POwer versus Terrorism Three Case Studies. Air University Pren Maxwell Air Force Base, Albana 36112-5962.
R.Grisson, A. Air Power in Counter-Terorist Operations:Balancing Objectives & Risks. The RAND Coorporation.
Rai, R. (2020). Time to Call Air Power into J & K Counter Terrorism Mechanism. Sunday Guardian Live .
Staniland, P. (April, 2003). Improving India’s Cpunter-Terrorism Policy after Mumbai . Combating Terrorism Centre .
Tankel, S. (Sep 28, 2020). Making the US Military’s Counter-Terrorism Mission Sustainable.
Submitted By: Deeksha Bordoloi.

Translate »