News / Asia

Analysts Look for Clues in Narendra Modi’s Foreign Policy

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif smile before the start of their bilateral meeting in New Delhi, May 27, 2014.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif smile before the start of their bilateral meeting in New Delhi, May 27, 2014.
Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won a historic election in India. His party soundly defeated the Congress Party and Modi assumes the leadership of India with a very strong mandate not seen in decades. 

Modi’s campaign was largely focused on domestic issues and analysts say his views on foreign policy remain unclear – especially with regard to Afghanistan and Pakistan. 

Michael Kugelman, is a senior program associate for South and Southeast Asia at the Wilson Center in Washington DC.

“Narendra Modi’s foreign policy interests in South Asia as they apply to India, Pakistan and Afghanistan are very unclear because on the one hand, he is very intense I believe on strengthening economic relations with not only these countries, but other countries as well which is all good, but the problem is Modi is a nationalist," he said.

Kugelman says Modi is pro-trade which could bring stability to the region.  But he says Modi’s hardline views on Pakistan could come into play if a terrorist attack was to happen in India and its roots traced into Pakistan. Modi might not show the type of restraint as his predecessor.

Omar Samad, a senior fellow at the New America Foundation in Washington DC says Modi will likely temper the strong rhetoric he voiced on the campaign trail.

“What we do know is that his rhetoric during campaign was viewed as somewhat strong vis-à-vis terrorism and any external threat to India. But at the same time he balanced it with a moderate view in terms of economic cooperation and expanded relations with the region,” Samad said.   

India and Afghanistan

India and Afghanistan have strategic partnership and so does Afghanistan and Pakistan, but Pakistan is concerned with India’s growing influence in Afghanistan which it sees as a threat to its national security.

Pakistani expert, Mansoor Ijaz says if Modi can improve relations with Pakistan, India could gain influence in Afghanistan. 

“Basically, he will try to change the equation with Pakistan and if he has better relations with Pakistan then he can safely increase his presence in Afghanistan on the development side if he can assure Pakistanis that Pakistan is not being sandwiched between Afghanistan and India,” he said.

Ijaz added that “In my opinion Pakistan is more paranoid about the Indian presence in Afghanistan than the real threat.”

The view from Kabul

Both front runners in the Afghan elections, Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai and Abdullah Abdullah have stated their goal to have good relations with both Pakistan and India.    
Ghafoor Liwal, Director of the Afghan Regional Studies Center in Kabul believes that future Afghan government will continue its warm relations with India. On Pakistan, Liwal is pessimistic.

“Pakistan’s biggest hope is that the future Afghan government fails to bring security and stability to Afghanistan and the country will to some extent attempt to fuel insurgency and armed rebellion against the government,” Liwal said.

You May Like

For Lebanon-based Refugees, Desperation Fuels Perilous Passage

In a war that has caused an estimated three million people to flee Syria, efforts to make perilous sea journey in search of asylum expected to increase More

South African Brewer Tackles Climate Change

Mega-brewer SAB Miller sent delegates to climate summit in Peru, says it is one of many private companies taking their own steps to fight climate change More

Indonesia Reports Increase in Citizens Joining Islamic State

Officials say more than 350 of its citizens are now in Syria or Iraq to fight with Islamic State - 50 more than last month More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: San Mann
June 01, 2014 10:02 PM
Frankly speaking, I find these selectively-applied phrases like "hardline views" to be ridiculously slanted. America's standard of behavior towards Pakistan amounts to looking the other way after catching it red-handed sheltering Osama Bin Laden on its soil while milking US taxpayers for tens of billions of dollars. Apparently, VOA could care less about how such taxpayer dollars are spent. Modi has no intention of giving Pakistan a free ride, or allowing it to turn India into a terrorist hunting ground - that's hardly a "hardline" posture.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?i
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
December 17, 2014 11:54 AM
The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.

All About America

AppleAndroid