ISLAMABAD, Nov 12 (APP): Calling New Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan having a negative takeaway, an Indian Strategic Affairs analyst said that in order to be viewed as a reliable stakeholder in Afghanistan, India should improve its ties with Pakistan and China.
Also an ex-Indian army officer, Pravin Sawhney, in an interview with Russia’s Sputnik News, said “the major takeaway from the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue is a negative one.”
“The reason for that is simple. Within hours of the Delhi Declaration, Russia issued its own statement. While the “Delhi Declaration”, or the joint statement, says that the participants would hold the next meeting by 2022, the Russian statement completely misses that point.”
Moreover, the Russian representative also issued a statement that multiple dialogues shouldn’t complicate the situation. The growing fissures between India and Russia were out in the open, he added.
Calling Delhi’s Dialogue as a perception management exercise for the people of India, Sawhney said it was also meant to send out a message that India was still an important stakeholder in Afghanistan.
About the “Extended Troika” hosted by Pakistan on November 11 and attended by “three major geostrategic players” including US, Russia, and China, the analyst said out of them only Russia was present at the Indian conference which also decided to express their own views.
“It is not simply about Afghanistan where the India-Pakistan ties come into focus. It is about a sense of timing in history. The Pakistanis were smart enough to realise the importance of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC),” he commented.
So, he said the overall success of Pakistan not only lies in terms of security, but in the sphere of overall connectivity.
To a question about the India-US ties, Pravin Sawhney said “India is on the wrong side of history. America is a very important country. We need good relations with the US.”
He said the Indian government must realise that peace and prosperity must first come in the immediate neighbourhood. “If our neighbourhood is not at peace with us, the Americans can do nothing for us.”
While India has linked its overall bilateral relations to the situation at the border and demanded that it wants the status quo at the Ladakh border (pre-April 2020) to be restored, he said “I can guarantee you that it will never happen. It is completely out of the question that the Indian territory that China has taken from us will be given back now.”
He said India had only land route with Afghanistan through Pakistan but it did not have good ties with Islamabad.
To a question, the analyst suggested India to call for a dialogue with China towards holding an informal summit with the Chinese leadership, like the Wuhan “Informal Summit” of 2018.
In another news report, Talmiz Ahmad, a former Indian ambassador, in an interview with Sputnik News, commented on New Delhi’s evolving policy towards Iran under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
He believed that India had hurt its “own interests” by being overtly compliant with US policy, not only with Iran but with other regional countries too.
Talmiz Ahmad, who had served as Indian ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), said India’s relations with Iran have always been subjected to the vagaries of its ties with the United States.
“However, what has alarmed me in the recent period is India’s complete acceptance of what ex-President Donald Trump initiated in 2018.”
He said there had been attempts by the Modi government to reengage with Iran after President Ebrahim Raisi’s election victory, despite Tehran being excluded from New Delhi’s strategic framework.
He said for the last 15 years, India has been steadily upgrading its strategic and defence ties with the United States. “To me, that is not a well-thought-out policy. It is a knee-jerk reaction of sorts to a certain challenge, which is the rise of China.”
To a question, he said Russia and China were now closely collaborating, and a triumvirate of sorts has emerged at our border, involving both of them as well as Iran.
Pakistan and Afghanistan are in close coordination with these three countries and India has been left excluded in its own neighbourhood. “India has been more focused on the overall maritime scenario, while it has neglected its priorities, which remain its land borders.”