The new Vishwa
Mitra tag, which New Delhi has been given in multiple global forums, could be
indeed seen as a remarkable development and moral uplifter amidst a period of
uncertainty, witnessed through hegemonic ambitions of great power players,
border insecurity, passive time-biding of potential competitors and pandemics
which propelled economic and geopolitical repercussions.
The incumbent government made a wise
choice while supplying healthcare to smaller littoral countries in order to
build up a positive image of a new global player, making soft power a new tool
to gain political prominence globally. The main idea is to bring many countries
under a similar umbrella through a sweet strategy instead of military force and
delayed tactics benefiting other adversaries. The golden Vishwa Mitra Period
of what Foreign Minister S Jaishankar reiterated at the Indian Ocean Region
Summit may or may not be prevalent in the next five years, where future central
governments’ ideological inclination might determine national and security
Why is the Land
of the Tiger a Vishwa Mitra for all?
Amidst these nine years, the incumbent
government’s decisiveness in furthering assertiveness in foreign policy and the
region has been favored by smaller neighbors and various stakeholders of the
Global South, making these post-pandemic years a period of triumph. Despite
different global circumstances and pressure to join full-fledged alliances, New
Delhi’s commitment towards strategic autonomy may be essential in uncertain
periods when adversaries passively strike and misguide countries in
decision-making through coercion and persuasion.
Moreover, 2023 was a year of immense
outreach and widespread global appreciation, whose roots could be seen through
the G20 Summit being held in September, SCO, and a possible QUAD Summit, with
New Delhi being the new chair in 2024. The summits have helped to establish a
positive and progressive image among global participants, resulting in moving
forward. Many of them are looking up towards India, where Quad partners- US,
Japan, and Australia are even keen on New Delhi hosting the Quad Summit even
though she has rejected the offer to join NATO and act in continuity towards being neutral, according to
what Indian newspaper, The Mint iterated. From a foreign policy angle, New
Delhi’s decisiveness has proved to be a game changer in her stature, which was
sluggish in the past. However, it still depends on multiple factors coming up
next year due to outcomes faced by the election of a new government.
The Indian economy, despite all odds,
seemed to have seen some positive news as far as Ease of Doing Business is
concerned, looking at the statistics of a Press Information Bureau Report in 10
years from a 142 rank to a 63 rank amidst the pandemic, which seems like an
achievement where credit may go to clear consensus, leadership, and direction.
Even a tough stance in her neighborhood and territory has paved the way for
many global opportunities thanks to its strategic autonomy.
Moreover, the Modi Government has
shown a lot of commitment towards the Global South in contemporary times with
the provision of necessities that were lacking in these countries during the
first few years of the pandemic through Vaccine Maitri and SAGAR
initiatives. In the recent G20 Summit, there was an initiative under the Delhi Declaration that the
African Union will be provided a level playing field in global politics and
issues such as piracy, climate change, health, and hygiene to foster
cooperation towards the 2030 SDG Plan, which may have been the most remarkable
development the Global South witnessed, this year.
New Delhi has partnered with
like-minded countries to establish a new economic corridor known as the IMEC,
which spans the Middle East, Iran, and Europe. This corridor aims to promote
greater economic integration and security interests among peripheral countries,
indirectly presenting an alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
global recognition, New Delhi from all corners where both traditional and
non-traditional challenges such as substance abuse, climate change,
state-sponsored extremism, poverty, and unemployment are very much prevalent.
Many challenges are up for the new government, depending on the party getting
elected through a popular mandate.
Challenges: Global Power Dynamics, Conflicting Ideologies, and Governance
In a country with diverse communities
and ideologies, looking at the slow and indecisive cum biased functioning of
institutions, a wise choice needs to be made among various stakeholders as well
as organizational bodies to adopt steady approaches to ensure self-reliance,
efficiency, and accountability in smaller sectors to further inclusive growth
to achieve common universal goals- development and welfare, security in an
uncertain global order. The goals and strategies adopted may determine New
Delhi’s good image amidst different repercussions from internal politics and
insecurity from diverse social and economic groups. Here, ideas of dissent and
partiality are not vital to inclusiveness and prosperity. Furthermore, they are
impediments to them and can hamper the real priorities that need urgent
But the only question remains about
the recent crisis in law and order in Manipur, which has created some
bottlenecks in the local governments. The silence of the incumbent party could
be seen as an advantage point for the opposition to mobilize weaker sections
and incentivize them to oust the incumbent government through popular dissent
and mandate. Here, the media refrained from taking crucial information; armed
forces were patrolling intensively to keep watch on the movement of people,
impacting their daily livelihoods and routines. Furthermore, a more robust,
inclusive, and consensual approach is needed between numerous state and center
bodies instead of only being selfish and brutish for power.
Furthermore, looking at India’s
diverse multiparty system, it is difficult for a proper consensus to come if
the Grand Old Party, Congress, comes and retains its position with other
regional parties with conflicting aspirations. So, this party needs to have a
clear approach towards development and not try to misperceive the minds of
people unaware of their true intent regarding their lust for power while they
are using class, caste, and religion to mobilize the weaker sections to propel
anger and disparity, where even right-wing nationalism may be a root cause
behind it. Then, if opposition parties do not understand the priorities, this
golden period may seem uncertain and obsolete.
Regarding non-state actors such as
NGOs, civil society groups impact the behavior and security of citizens. These
institutions play a crucial role in the intellectual pursuit and research of
academics and think tanks involved in policymaking and analysis. Henceforth,
looking at emerging ideas.
Among these institutions, observed as
essential bridges for higher government authorities, a prejudiced and populist
mindset may not seem fruitful if a balanced approach is required in India’s
security and foreign affairs. So, there are links and gaps that need to be seen
and assessed from multiple lenses, whether it’s security, economic, or social
development. Political favoritism between groups and parties has enmeshed
universal and sustainable outcomes, essential in lowering the country’s
financial or political costs.
Sustainability and Resilience be Achieved Amidst Political Confusion?
development has been the core focus of global players to collaborate and engage
in a multipolar world of multidimensional threats from the misappropriation of
natural resources required for rapid militarization by rogue states, climate
change, and vast usage of fossil fuels.
Further, the seventeen Sustainable
Development Goals could be the focus of the future and current government,
which is working towards promoting renewable solar energy in rural areas, which
is a more affordable and clean option. The defecation-free level has reached
almost 100 percent in rural areas, whereas, during the UPA era, it was about
approx. 35 percent. This initiative to ensure hygiene living in rural areas
seems essential for good health and well-being to control disease spread. Various
loopholes and failures in essential issues such as health, employment, and
migration amidst the pandemic should be noted by future governments so that the
latter pull up their socks in a timely matter about the opportunity costs if
the natural resources are diminishing due to environmental challenges and
resource scarcity could impact livelihoods of smaller industries who are
entirely dependent on those. These future ramifications will pave the way to
leaving one’s village for another alien land with room for their labor and
Many global factors are incentivizing
stakeholders to choose India as another alternative in the future. Otherwise,
it will stagnate without consensus and bridging amongst policymakers, private
players, academicians, and government organizations. Knowledge and new
innovative ideas should be the goal of a sustainably developed global entity.
Inclusivity in institutions is an
essential aspect of a country’s character and image in an interconnected era.
Efficiency, self-reliance, and resilience could only bridge the gaps prevalent
in organizational frameworks. Corruption, labor alienation, and narrow-minded
goals and aspirations shrouded the trustworthiness of institutions. So now, it
solely depends on the citizens whether sustainability with an adaptive mindset
is a better choice or sticking to old traditions and values even in a
Vishwa Mitra about
Leadership or Collective Efforts?
Vishwa Mitra is
not about a personal image of leaders or parties; it is an incentive to nudge a
goal aimed towards leaving no one behind through emphasizing universal
cooperation, collaboration, accountability, creating an inclusive level playing
fields in policymaking, idea generation, strategic planning for weaker or
indigenous groups in society, who can play an essential role in nation building
and equitable development. It is imperative for the leader to be true to his
subjects and to ensure collective efforts among various stakeholders and
individuals working towards universal development, cooperation, and education
so that they are epitomes of strength in national character.
Author Bio: Vineet Malik is a member of the Consortium of Indo-Pacific
He has completed his master’s in international relations from O.P Jindal Global
Views are personal.