Amid India’s plans to ramp up nuclear energy production, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano will be touring the country’s nuclear facilities in Rajasthan. Mr Amano, the …Read More
Diplomacy is the art of the possible. If successful and effective diplomacy is about reigniting the spark in old relationships, winning new friends, breaking new grounds, and shaping the outcomes in the international arena to promote the country’s enlightened national interests and development, then the seven-month old Narendra Modi government scores high as it builds on the successes of 2014 and looks ahead to 2015 with “new vision and new vigour.” Breakthrough Diplomacy, as India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj writes in a prologue to the eponymous e-book published by India’s Ministry of External Affairs, is about melding ‘Diplomacy for Development’ as the overarching themes in India’s global engagements.
“2014 has truly been a Year of Breakthrough Diplomacy. India’s star is today shining ever brighter on the global firmament,” writes Swaraj.
Talking of breakthrough diplomacy, it’s time to unscramble the jargon and introduce some balance in diplomatic discourse and the unfolding possibilities in the coming months. For one thing, breakthroughs don’t happen every day or every year in diplomacy; the India-US nuclear deal was a breakthrough, but getting Obama to be the chief guest at the 2015 Republic Day celebrations is a diplomatic triumph, but not a breakthrough. To claim routine diplomatic successes as breakthroughs, therefore, would be misleading, and lowering the bar. For another thing, diplomatic breakthroughs presuppose a perceptible and substantive rise in a country’s comprehensive national power, economic and military strength as well as soft power.
Made in India! It’s their tryst with India, and the spirit of South-South sharing, that has branded them for life. On the night of October 22, which coincided with the Diwali eve, students and mid-career professionals from dozens of countries across the globe celebrated a unique institution called ITEC, which brought them together to India in an adventure of learning, seeking, sharing and skilling.
Singing and dancing amid animated chatter to Indian pop star Alisha Chinai’s foot-tapping number Made in India, this rainbow brotherhood toasted the golden jubilee of Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme, which has become their ticket to India and the world in more ways than one. The atmosphere was heady and resembled that of a graduation dinner, with ITEC alumni from diverse nationalities exchanging notes, clicking photos and packing their nostalgia bag with memories of India. Noor Mohammed from Afghanistan said disarmingly: It’s a gift. I am so happy to be part of ITEC and come to India.” Catherine from Colombia was also all praise for the ITEC ethos: ”It was an invaluable experience. India is an amazing country.”Read More