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8.3] India’s Vision of a New World Order

1. Introduction

“One earth, one family, one future”

International world order is always in flux. The current world order, created by the western powers have largely serve the interests of those nations. In light of this, India proposes a New World Order, which will be more equitable and more considerate of the global south. While there is no consensus regarding the details of this world order, we can see the broad contours of this India’s vision of a new world order in the speeches of government leaders and scholars. 

Taking inspiration from the its civilization values of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (whole world is one family), we can say that India proposes following changes in the existing world order and in process, proposes a new world order.

  1. Making institutions of global governance like UN, UNSC more representative, democratic and above all accountable.
  2. Establishing a rule based, open, balanced and stable trade regime, which will also take into consideration the unfair competition the global south is faced with.
  3. High priority to environmental concern and focus on renewable energy, with common but differentiated responsibility in light of different developmental levels of nations.
  4. Recognition of multipolar reality of present world order.

2. S Jaishankar

India no longer needs to conform to norms established by other countries

India, as an independent and rising power, will now adopt a pragmatic rather than ideological attitude toward international relations. As such, it will stand alone on the world stage, neither allying with the West nor with China, and will no longer subscribe to a binary conception of polarity in global order. Moreover, it will adopt an interests-first approach rather than one predicated on values.

A crucial pillar of the new Indian grand strategy is advancing national interests by identifying and exploiting opportunities created by global contradictions.

India remains deeply committed to fighting climate change under the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) and the Paris Agreement. We do so on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances.

India’s steadfast commitment to South-South Cooperation is by now well established and well recognized. Our approach is based on principles of mutual respect and national ownership with a commitment to sustainable development for all.

India firmly advocates a ‘zero-tolerance’ approach. In our view, there is no justification for any act of terrorism, regardless of motivation. And no rhetoric, however sanctimonious can ever cover-up blood-stains.

India is prepared to take up greater responsibilities. But it seeks at the same time to ensure that the injustice faced by the Global South is decisively addressed.

India should make efforts to prepare for a bigger role in today’s world order, and it must do so with a sense of historical and civilizational responsibility.

3. Other Scholars

At the risk of oversimplifying, India’s view of the current world order can be summed up in three words: unequal, discriminatory and unrepresentative. – Happymon Jacob

India prefers to have strong global institutions (like the UN). However, it is reticent about regional organizations which take on global mandates (such as NATO) and is also increasingly less sanguine about organizations that are not representative (such as the UNSC). – Happymon Jacob

“India values a multipolar international order, underpinned by international law, premised upon respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, resolution of international disputes through peaceful negotiations, and free and open access for all to the global commons”. – HV Shringla

India sees itself as a bridge between the North and the South. – C Raja Mohan

National self-interest rather than any grand vision of harmony… have defined India’s new global avatar. – Shruti Kapila

4. India’s vision of Indo-Pacific shared by PM Modi in Shanghri-La dialogue 2018

  1. India seeks an inclusive engagement in the Indo-Pacific Region – from the shores of Africa to that of the Americas.
  2. A free, open, inclusive region, which embraces all in a common pursuit of progress and prosperity.
  3. Southeast Asia is at its center. And ASEAN has been and will be central to its future.
  4. The region’s common prosperity and security would require evolution, through dialogue, of a common rules-based order. And, it must equally apply to all individually as well as to the global commons.
  5. There should be equal access for all as a right under international law to the use of common spaces on sea and in the air that would require freedom of navigation, unimpeded commerce and peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law.
  6. Support for rule-based, open, balanced and stable trade environment in the Indo-Pacific Region.
  7. Connectivity is vital. It does more than enhance trade and prosperity. It unites a region. There are many connectivity initiatives in the region. For these to succeed, not only infrastructure must be built, but also bridges of trust. And for that, these initiatives must be based on respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, consultation, good governance, transparency, viability and sustainability. They must empower nations, not place them under impossible debt burden.
  8. Competition is normal. But contests must not turn into conflict; differences must not be allowed to become disputes.
  9. All of this is possible, if we do not return to the age of great power rivalries: Asia of rivalry will hold us all back. Asia of cooperation will shape this century.
Posted in PSIR NOTES

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