Changing geopolitical scene in Indo-Pacific: Vietnam-Australia & Vietnam-India partnership

Changing geopolitical scene in Indo-Pacific: Vietnam-Australia & Vietnam-India partnership


The geo-political scene in the Indo-Pacific region is changing rapidly in over the last couple of years. The driving force behind these changes is the rise of China, together with its assertiveness on territorial issues, particularly its claim on most parts of South China Sea in the midst of rival claims from some other countries of the region, namely Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and, of course Taiwan that claims everything that mainland China does.
The strengthening of Vietnam-Australia relations and India-Australia relations together offers an alternative narrative to China’s view of the regional order.

India-France ties enter a new era with logistics and defence pacts


India and France have elevated their multi-pronged strategic partnership to a new level by signing a landmark logistics pact between their armed forces and unveiled a joint strategic vision for the Indian Ocean region, which is set to usher in a phase 2.0 in their blossoming relationship.
The wide-ranging talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron in New Delhi on March 10 culminated in a soaring vision of next steps in India-France strategic partnership, which was reinforced by the signing of 14 pacts in critical areas such as defence, nuclear energy and infrastructure.

With China watching, India, Vietnam bolster Indo-Pacific connect, defence ties


Amid the continuing volatility around South China Sea and China’s growing clout, India and Vietnam have decided to deepen their coordination in the Indo-Pacific region and bolster their defence ties to shape an inclusive regional architecture.
Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang’s March 2-4 visit to India and his talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi have expanded the scope of comprehensive strategic partnership between India and Vietnam, and underscored the pivotal role of India-Vietnam relations in the mutating regional landscape. Two visits by Vietnam’s prime minister and president to India within weeks of each other have cemented Hanoi’s role as a pivot in New Delhi’s Act East policy.

BJP breaches last Red citadel in Tripura


The Left’s last citadel in India has crumbled, with the Bharatiya Janata Party set to replace the 20-year old rule of CPI(M)’s Manik Sarkar in an election that has proved to be quite revolutionary. The BJP is leading in 40 seats, crossing the 2/3rd mark after counting began this morning for the 59 assembly seats, giving a decisive push to its Mission Northeast.
From securing around 1.5 per cent votes in the last assembly election in 2013, to this historic election verdict, it has been an impressive performance of the BJP that aligned with the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura. The party carried out an aggressive campaign in the state with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party heavyweights like Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Yogi Adityanath leading the campaign.

India-Jordan ties turn strategic with defence pact


Imparting a new energy to New Delhi’s Look West policy, India and Jordan have taken their security cooperation to a new level by signing a defence framework agreement and inked a clutch of agreements in diverse areas.As countries that face the common threat of terrorism and extremism, India and Jordan have also decided to bolster their cooperation in counter-terrorism and deradicalization.
The talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Jordanian King Abdullah II in New Delhi on March 1 have deepened strategic dimension of the burgeoning India-Jordan ties. The major takeaway was the signing of a defence framework agreement that covers areas like training, defence industry, counter-terrorism, military studies, cyber security, military medical services and peace-keeping.

King Abdullah II’s visit: India, Jordan eye new horizons


Amid raging conflicts in the Gulf region, India and the Hashemite kingdom of Jordan are set to transform and upgrade their strategic and economic ties during the visit of Jordan’s King Abdullah II to New Delhi.
The King’s itinerary in India includes a visit to IIT Delhi, attending a CEO roundtable, participating in the India Jordan-Business Forum and addressing a conference on Islamic heritage and moderation.
The highlight of the visit will be the unveiling of a new framework for enhanced security and defence partnership.

Xi Jinping Forever: CPC proposal for scrapping 2-term presidential term


The rise and rise of China’s President Xi Jinping is set to acquire a new momentum and reality as the Communist Party of China gears up to extend the presidential service beyond the two consecutive terms. This move to scrap two-term limit means that Xi Jinping could choose to rule the world’s second largest economy for his entire lifetime.
Mr Xinping has emerged as the most powerful leader of China since Mao Zedong and Den Xiaoping as was evident in his elevation to the CPC pantheon in the 19th Party Congress in November last year.
The abolition of the two-term limit on the tenure of the president means that China is staring at an indefinite leadership by Mr Jinping beyond 2023 when his second term ends. Getting such a proposal approved in the parliament that opens on March 5 is no difficult task since it is filled with Party loyalists. The 64-year-old Chinese leader secured a second five year term as the General Secretary of the CPC last year and this too may last well beyond the usual 10 year term.

In shadow of Khalistan row, India, Canada map way ahead

India and Canada have signed six pacts and decided to fast-track negotiations for two defining agreements to expand their economic relationship. It was a clear signal that although Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s indulgence of Sikh separatists will remain a thorny issue, but for now the two sides have not allowed it to hijack their relationship.     
On the last leg of his week-long tour that has been hotly debated, Mr Trudeau met his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi in New Delhi on February 23 and discussed a wide range of bilateral and global issues.  After the talks, the two sides signed six agreements in the fields of energy, sports, higher education, intellectual property rights and cooperation in science, technology, innovation and electronics.

Hinduism compatible with secularism: Tharoor


Dismissal of Hinduism is not needed for preservation of India’s secular values, but it has to be disentangled with the vision of the ‘Hindutva Brigade’ that has no place for other faiths, say veteran Congressman Dr Karan Singh and senior party leader Dr Shashi Tharoor.They expressed their view of Hinduism at a lively discussion on the book ‘Why I am a Hindu’ written by Mr Tharoor, a also a well-known author and a former UN diplomat.

The two scholars also cautioned against the Hindutva Brigade’s attempt to equate Hinduism with nationalism.Mr Tharoor targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other leaders of his part BJP for trying to appropriate Swami Vivekanada on wrong grounds, Dr Tharoor said.

India a model for cultural diversity: Iranian President


Offering Friday prayers at the historic Mecca Masjid, a Sunni mosque in Hyderabad, Iranian President Hasan Rouhani sent out a strong message for the imperative need to end sectarian differences in Islam across the world. In India on a three-day visit, Mr Rouhani cited India as a successful example of the peaceful coexistence of various religions and ethnicities.
In his meeting with Muslim intellectuals, scholars and clerics in Hyderabad, the Iranian president denounced the attempts by the West to create fissures among the Muslim communities across the eastern world. He stressed on the need to embrace diplomatic solution to the troubles in the Middle East, instead of military solutions. Mr Rouhani is the first Iranian president to visit India after Mohammad Khatami’s pathbreaking trip in 2003.