Modi, combining India’s foreign policy with domestic interest
A whole host of countries from West Asia to Europe were on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s foreign travel list for 2022.
He co-chaired with the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Olaf Scholz, the Plenary session of the India-Germany Inter-Governmental Consultations (IGC) in May this year. Prime Minister Modi emphasized that India-Germany partnership could serve as an example of success in a complex world. He also invited German participation in India’s Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign. The Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan or Self-reliant India campaign is the vision of new India envisaged by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi constantly combines India’s foreign policy with domestic interests. He implemented policies such as ‘Act East Asia’, ‘Neighbourhood First’ and added ‘Act Far East’ and ‘Act West Asia’ policies to give prominence to India’s domestic needs. He has also managed to establish strong ties with the Middle East and made these nations friendly. Modi’s policies to attract foreign direct investment, made in India and Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan have contributed to India’s global avowal, along with India’s independent interests in world markets.
The Indian government under Prime Minister Modi has excelled in implementing a strong foreign policy. Famous Indian diplomat Sushma Swaraj and Subrahmanyam Jaishankar carried Modi’s doctrine aimed at improving relations with neighboring countries, across Asia and forged good relations with major powers.
Following Prime Minister Modi’s election to power in 2014, New Delhi has shown more assertiveness in its international appearances, especially in its role as an emerging superpower and India’s commitment to the ideals of a multipolar global order. Prime Minister Modi paved the way for strong ties with great and middle powers as well as small countries. India took on a more active role in the strengthening of global alliances, which enhanced its role and created the image of a country that is ready to be a force on the international stage.
During Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Germany in June this year, he addressed a community reception in Berlin and pointed out why the 21st century is very important for India, for Indians, and especially for the country’s youth. “Today India has made up its mind and is moving ahead with a resolve. Today India knows where, how and how far it has to go. And you know that when a country is determined, it chooses new ways and achieves its destination. Today’s aspirational India and the youth want rapid development of the country. He knows that political stability and strong will is very essential. Today’s India understands it very well.”
He noted that it is the vision of the great people of India that it made the government of the country stronger than before. The people of India handed over power to the decisive government needed to take India forward in all spheres.
In a day and age where political leaders prefer to blow their own trumpet, Prime Minister Modi humbly highlighted the achievements of his country and its people instead of bragging about his own achievements.
“The country progresses when the people of the country themselves lead its development. The country progresses when the people of the country come forward and decide its direction. In today’s India, it is not the government, or Modi, but the crores of the people who are the driving force. That is why we are ending unnecessary interference of the government from the lives of the people of the country. We are transforming the country through reforms. And I always say that reform requires political will, performance requires establishment of government machinery and transformation requires public participation. Only then the vehicle of reform, perform and transform moves forward. Today India is working fast and setting new dimensions in ease of living, quality of life, ease of employment, quality of education, ease of mobility, quality of travel, ease of doing business, quality of services and quality of products.”
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi paid an official visit to Lumbini, Nepal on May 16, 2022, coinciding with the auspicious occasion of Buddha Purnima, at the invitation of the Prime Minister of Nepal Rt Hon’ble Sher Bahadur Deuba. As Prime Minister, this was Shri Narendra Modi’s fifth visit to Nepal and first to Lumbini.
Modi also visited Japan on 27 September 2022 to attend the State Funeral of former Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Shinzo Abe. He also met Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida during the visit.
Prime Minister Modi also met the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Olaf Scholz, on 27 June 2022.
Following his participation at the G7 summit in Germany, Modi arrived in the UAE June 28 for a one-day visit to pay his condolences on the death of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, former UAE president and Abu Dhabi ruler.
The Prime Minister’s visit is the first after the two countries signed a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) earlier this year. The two countries signed the deal during a virtual summit Sheikh Mohamed, and PM Modi witnessed. The historic agreement aims to take the bilateral trade to $115 billion in five years, securing India’s place as one of the UAE’s most significant commercial partners.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also participated in the 2nd India-Nordic summit in Denmark that primarily focused on post-pandemic economic recovery, climate change, renewable energy and revolving global security.
Modi also visited Samarkand, Uzbekistan in September, at the invitation of the President of Uzbekistan, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, to attend the 22nd Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
India was earlier seen as a disinterested regional power let down by its corrupt governance model, but today the world admires India’s potential.
The most visible indicator of Modi’s unique policy are very evident in numerous foreign trips and frequent receptions of foreign statesmen in India. By the end of his first year in office, Modi had traveled to 18 countries, a record for an Indian prime minister. As of July 2022, he has made 64 foreign trips, visiting 63 countries, including visits to the United States to attend the United Nations General Assembly. He presented himself as a mobile Prime Minister who prefers frequent meetings with other statesmen and foreign nationals which fits perfectly with the Samvaad concept.
He leaves the impression of an Indian nationalist but also of a globalized Indian. For foreign policy-loving Indians, he became a dream prime minister because he was persistent in his vision of a progressive India and the creation of the “Indian Century”. Strong support in the country and parliament gave him the opportunity to devote himself more strongly to foreign policy, and the recorded results are brilliant.
Modi’s vision is that the 21st century will be India’s and that no one can stop India’s might because of its young population. He believes that this is a recipe for achieving superpower status in the long run. He wants to encourage optimism and faith that the golden age of India is yet to come, which are the elements that were missing from previous leaderships.
Modi has demonstrated how decisive leadership and vision can bring about positive changes regarding the status of the country on the international stage as well as on the domestic level.
In his famous speech at Madison Square Garden in 2014 in front of the assembled Indian diaspora, Modi responded to calls from political opponents about his humble origins and the fact that he was a tea seller as a child: “I am a small man and that is why I do big things for small people of India”. Modi makes great positive changes because he fights for the rights of his country, but also the rights of small countries within the international order. India could hardly have gotten a more prudent and dedicated prime minister who is restoring the international glory and position that India certainly deserves.