India’s Rise and Global Dynamics

Illustration by: Budha Chandra Singh

As we reach the halfway mark of 2023, India continues to impress with its sustained growth momentum, leaving the world in awe of its potential. It is evident that India’s ascent is set to be consistent, and the future holds great promise for the nation. However, as we look ahead, India faces the crucial test of maintaining its economic prowess, traversing the geostrategic landscape, and silently revolutionising its military capabilities to face the challenges that lie ahead.

In today’s troubled times, humanity finds itself in distress. The world peace, once considered humanity’s greatest achievement, has lost its lustre due to the increasing conflicts across the globe. A significant turning point in human history has occurred with the Russia-Ukraine war, where the stakes are high. The frantic efforts by the United States to reclaim its diminished global hegemony have inadvertently given rise to a new form of colonialism. This trend is mirrored in India’s growing reliance on American technology and chip companies, forming an unequal relationship within the creation of new tech supply chains. Prime Minister Modi’s new acronym “The future is AI – America and India” to showcase the technological cooperation between US and India suggests that momentuous developments are taking place. India needs to be cautious towards emergence of an unwarranted centre-periphery dependency and be ready to set it right.

In the last three months, the global focus has shifted toward building resilient supply chains to counter China’s weaponisation of trade, especially with its monopoly over rare earth elements. New security-driven trade alliances are likely to dominate the global trading system. This presents a unique opportunity for India to position itself at the centre of these new supply chains and reap the benefits in the best possible manner.

India must uphold its policy of strategic autonomy while engaging with various nations and blocs based on its national interests. Prioritising its own regional dynamics, India should address unique security challenges such as border disputes, terrorism, and regional conflicts. In India’s strategic calculations, it is vital to concentrate on “swing states” that have gained considerable traction as the great power conflict intensifies. Therefore, India must focus on “geo-economics” and foster bilateral relationships with resource-rich Africa, capital-rich Gulf countries, and technology-rich Europe, as swing states in these regions hold substantial significance for India’s rise.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the United States in June 2023 further strengthened the bilateral relationship and set the India-US strategic partnership on a new growth trajectory. While the defence partnership between the two countries remains transactional in terms of shared material and geopolitical interests, it holds significant potential for the Indian military-industrial complex. However, for this potential to be realised, the government must play a significant role in enabling the public and private sectors.

PM Modi’s upcoming visit to Paris to attend France’s National Day parade on July 14 will mark 25 years of the India-France strategic partnership. This milestone is expected to elevate the strategic partnership between the two countries to new heights, with a comprehensive agenda encompassing defence, energy, space, new technologies, and co-development.

In all, India needs to vigilantly and adroitly navigate the challenges of maintaining economic growth, bolstering its military capabilities, and ensuring strategic autonomy.

As we present the July-September 2023 edition, Raksha Anirveda strives to raise the bar of excellence even higher. We eagerly await feedback from our readers, as their input is invaluable to us. Happy reading!

Jai Hind!!