By Sindhu Dinesh
Post Graduate Research Scholar, Department of Geopolitics and International Relations,
Manipal Academy of Higher Education, India
Reflections on India as a Rising Power
‘International Politics, like all politics, is a struggle for Power’, a well-known remark by Hans J Morgenthau. The concept of ‘Power’ is at the core of International Relations, interpreted in various forms, Power is the instrument employed by nations to fulfill their national interest. As much as Power can be the ‘means to an end’; for many countries, power is an end in itself. In defining a nation-state, a primordial component is the nature and strength of power it possesses.
India’s power status in the international system has been addressed with a plethora of terms like ‘bridging power’, ‘ambivalent power’, ‘rising power’, ‘emerging power’, ‘responsible power’, ‘balancing power’, ‘regional power’, ‘major power’ and so on. Some of the factors underpinning these descriptions include India’s growing economy, acceptance by the international community, stable democracy, military capability, political influence, behavioral pattern in negotiations and its overall growth trajectory. Another major reason for the various ‘typologies of power’ assigned to India is that India itself has exhibited great power aspirations as well as has demonstrated equally tremendous indigenous capability in important sectors.
While these are the debates on India’s rising power status among the scholars and academic circles in International Relations; it would be interesting to explore further whether gaining acceptance in the neighborhood is a pre-condition for a rising power? How does India’s immediate neighborhood perceive its Rise? Do the neighboring countries think of India’s Rise as a benefit or a threat? Are there only perceptions, or also misperceptions that exist on India’s Rise in its immediate neighborhood? These are some of the questions that should be further explored.
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