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India-U.S. Ties UPSC NOTE

 Current state of relations between India and the United States

  • U.S. offered to restart the decade-old plan to transfer technology for jet engines to India, during Modi’s last year visit to U.S.

  • The visit was marked by many such announcements of strategic and high-tech cooperation, with the U.S.-India initiative on Critical and Emerging Technology (iCET) considered a major success for bilateral relations that would set the stage for a whole new phase in ties

  • Last September marked 25 years of the turnaround in ties post-Pokhran, that was heralded by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s famous Asia Society speech in New York, on September 28, 1998, where he called India and the U.S. “natural allies in the quest for a better future” for the world in the 21st century. 

  • Since then, Delhi and Washington have built up strategic ties year on year, with dialogues in a growing number of spheres — from climate change and green energy to critical and emerging technologies and outer space.

  • Over the past decade, the growth is seen in strategic trust in particular, with the conclusion of all foundational agreements, a plethora of military exercises, growing interoperability and coordination on maritime operations

  • A broader mutual understanding has been sparked by many of the old irritants going away from relations: the de-hyphenation of U.S.-India ties with Pakistan, silence over old concerns on Jammu-Kashmir that once roiled ties, India’s increased engagement with the Quad (India, Australia, Japan and the U.S.) and the U.S.’s Indo-Pacific strategy, and shared concerns over China’s aggression have brought Delhi and DC increasingly on the “same page”, internationally.

  • While the bilateral engagement has been thriving, some of the “not-so-good” or work-in-progress areas lie in the areas of multilateral cooperation on global conflicts

  • Russia’s war in Ukraine has been one major area of difference, especially as the U.S. has framed the war purely in terms of the international rule of law and humanitarian principles

  • India has chosen a more historical frame that also considers the disruption to other players like the Global South on issues such as food, fertilizer and energy security. 

  • There have been some compromises: the U.S. has withdrawn its objections to India’s continued purchase of oil and other Russian exports and held off any talk of sanctions, while India has put over the annual India-Russia summit for two years now.

  • Some of the edge of the U.S.’s moralistic posture has also been taken off by its support of Israel’s bombardment of Gaza and the continued killing of civilians despite calls from the United Nations, the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice to stop.

The China Factor

  • On the other multilateral front and growing concerns over China’s threats against Taiwan, with the latest conflagration over the Philippines in the South China Sea too, India-U.S. cooperation at the Quad has flagged somewhat. This has mainly been a factor of logistics

Area of disagreement

  • The attempted assassination of Khalistani separatist and U.S. citizen Gurpatwant Singh Pannun in New York, allegedly ordered by Indian security officials

  • Although details of the allegations became public only in November last year, it is clear that the discomfort over the perception that India is behind the killing of foreign citizens in friendly countries had begun to seep into the relationship even as Prime Minister Modi touched down in the U.S. last year.

  • Concerns have broadened, particularly with U.S. intelligence agencies, the Department of Justice, and at the U.S. Congress, where lawmakers now routinely raise concerns from that section of the diaspora that feels most targeted by India, including those accused of terrorism by India.

  • While the U.S.’s demand that India bring senior officials “to account” publicly for the alleged plot is a non-starter, the Government of India must realise that its theory of “rogue actors” being responsible for such a high profile plot will not wash either.



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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: India-U.S. Ties UPSC NOTE
India-U.S. Ties UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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