FACTS THAT MATTER
1. Immediately after independence, India faced the twin challenges of Welfare and democracy. Moreover, India started participating in the world affairs as an independent nation state with the overall context like the legacy of many international disputes left by the British, pressures created by partition and poverty alleviation.
2. India was born in the backdrop of world war, hence it decided to conduct foreign relations with an aim to respect the sovereignty of other nations to achieve security through maintenance of peace. For this, India laid down directive Principles of State Policy in the Article 51 of Indian Constitution.
3. The foreign policy of a nation is the interplay of domestic and external factors. Pt. J.L. Nehru was the ‘Chief Architect of India’s Foreign Policy’ with the objectives of preserving sovereignty of India, protection of territorial integrity and promotion of rapid economic development. Hence India adopted NAM to stay away from any military blocs.
4. Nehru’s Era established the contacts between India and States in Asia and Africa by convening conferences on Asian Relations (March 1947), Indonesia’s Freedom Struggle (1949), decolonisation process, and engaged herself in Bandung Conference in 1955 .with the newly independent Asian and African Nations.
5. Panchsheel, the five principles of peaceful co-existance (29 April 1954) between India and China was a stronger step towards friendship and relations. India advocated China’s new government as a communist even in the UN after Chinese revolution in 1949 to ahead a friendly step.
6. India and China began to conflict on annexation of Tibet by China and suppressed Tibetan culture also. China claimed Aksai Chin area and NEFA within the Indian territory, which differences could not be resolved despite correspondence and discussions and led India to indulge in conflict.
7. India and Pakistan conflicted on initiative of Pakistan’s serious armed conflict over Kashmir issue in 1965. The UN intervened and made the both to sign Tashkent Agreement in 1966 to relieve the situation. But 1965 war added to India’s already difficult economic situation.
8. India’s foreign policy reflects her desire to be an important regional power which reflected during Bangladesh War 1971 when there were clashes between East and West Pakistan and India supported freedom struggle in Bangladesh and declared unilateral ceasefire with the surrender of Pakistan. India and Pakistan signed Shimla Agreement on 3rd July 1972 to formalise the return of Peace.
9. India’s Nuclear Policy advocates no first use and reiterates India’s commitment to global verifiable on non-discriminatory nuclear disarmament leading to nuclear weapons free world. Pt. J.L. Nehru was against nuclear weapons, so he placed nuclear disarmament and considered NPT as discriminatory and India has always been committed to use these weapons for peaceful purposes.
WORDS THAT MATTER
1. Non-alignment: A policy not to join any military alliances created due to cold war.
2. Foreign Policy: It is an interplay of domestic and external factors of a nation.
3. Panchsheel: Five principles of peaceful co-existence to be signed in 1954 between India and China.
4. Bandung Conference: An Afro-Asian conference in Bandung in 1955 to establish NAM and India’s engagement with Asian and African nations.
5. NEFA: North-Eastern Frontier Agency known much of the state of Arunachal Pradesh in 1960s.