2008 was a landmark year for Indo-US nuclear relationship. US backed Nuclear Supplier Group, NSG, waiver led India to be the first non-NPT signatory to make a nuclear agreement with any country. It reflects the trust and faith world has on India. Our ‘no-first use policy’ is a globally recognised one. Even the two nuclear tests Pokhran-I and Pokhran-II under Indira Gandhi and Vajpayee respectively were only to show the world our capabilities, but not to attack. Today India signed nuclear agreements with the US, Russia, France and Japan too.
After having voluntarily adhered to all the NSG regulations, India has bid for NSG membership. India was on the brink of getting admitted into the elite nuclear suppliers group. But one country stopped, China. China didn’t want a non-NPT signatory to be part of NSG. They have their own reasoning. No country was inducted the way India wants to get inducted, so Pakistan must also be considered at par with India’s position. China claims Pakistan too adhered to all the regulations of NSG. India garnered support from all the countries, barring china. PM Modi had a personal meeting with his Chinese counterpart. But China stuck to its ground. Today’s Chinese ally Russia, old Indian friend, also supports India’s NSG bid. India’s NSG entry will be a boost to third world countries and keeps all countries on an equal footing.
Commenting on the same issue, the Obama Administration lashed out at China calling it an ‘Outlier’. “Clearly there is one outlier that needs to be addressed and that is China. The (US) President (Barack Obama) has been very clear and unequivocal that he believes that India has met the criteria for NSG and that the United States supports India’s entry that India is ready and India should be brought into the NSG.” Nisha Desai Biswal, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, told news agency PTI in an interview. A few days from now the Trump administration will take over the baton. So far Trump’s tone and tenor has been very radical.
It’s a game of strategic and geo-political interests, comment security analysts. China’s obstruction to India’s bid is primarily to appease the Pakistan army. China’s $46 billion CPEC runs through disputed territory of PoK and also the disastrously backward Baluchistan. If China wants a smooth implementation of this multi-billion dollar, it must make peace with Pak army, so that the latter takes care of security. However, there are many irritants between India-China-Pakistan. Branding of Jaish chief Masood Azhar as an international terrorist, India’s asylum to Dalai lama, border disputes, China’s presence in indian waters, etc, the list is big.
Looking at the pace at which the events are unfolding, it doesn’t seem to be rosy for India. With the entry of new Trump administration, we have to watch out his policy towards India and China. Whether his radical moves will impact countries is for the time to decide.