Political Developments in Afghanistan: Implications for India is an account on the longstanding relationship between the two Southern Asian countries. At the outset, the author briefly takes the readers to the colonial period political development in the region in an attempt to analyse the factors which laid the foundation of their historical engagement.
The book focuses on the relations between the two Southern Asian countries after partition of the Indian subcontinent. The post-partition political developments in the Indian subcontinent (India-Pakistan and Afghanistan-Pakistan antagonism) and the emergence of the Cold War politics in the region that impelled their relations to a new level find adequate space. The author argue that though Afghanistan is India’s indispensable neighbour, its political ties and strategic interests were weakly rooted during the Cold War period. The author has also discussed in detail the debate of India’s foreign policy towards the Soviet Union during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
The change of political conditions in Afghanistan after the dethronement of the Taliban regime once again provided an opportunity for India to come into contact with the Afghans. Yet, India seems not to have made full use of the potential in its relations with Afghanistan because of Pakistan antagonistic policy. Pakistani leaders have never reconciled to the grievances of the post-partition political problems and crisis with India, and consider India as the “biggest threat” to their existence. Pakistan not only adopts a hostile policy towards India, but, its policy towards Afghanistan too has been shaped on the basis of its relations with India. Thus, Pakistan’s leaders maliciously observe Afghanistan policy towards India and actively campaign with the international community to “stonewall” India’s involvement in the politics of Afghanistan for fear of India’s influence. It is because of such an aggressive and offensive policy adopted by Pakistan that every peace effort in the region has been thwarted even before it could be tested.
This book explores India’s past diplomatic relations with Afghanistan, and examines the problems and prospects in India-Afghanistan relations in a changing geostrategic environment.