The Depth Behind India-US Relations
Mere trade pacts alone do not stand as testimony torelations between two countries; there are many elements to it. So, those trying to judge the success or failure of US President Donald Trump’s visit to India are committing a grave mistake as such visits cannot be weighed so simply. The visit cannot be deemed a failure even though a long-standing trade deal was postponed. At the same time, the visit cannot be claimed a success only because defence and energy deals were signed. Keeping aside the profit and loss theory, the said visit highlights a new world order in which two major democracies of the world will work in tandem and cohesion. Coming together of the United States of America and India is in no manner a negligible achievement. Rather, the cooperation may be the key to future prosperity.
Though it was expected that with similar ideological affinities the countries would become friends naturally and hold similar opinions on important matters, the US and India didn’t become close overnight. The process started in the nineties. A number of factors played an important role in breaking the ice between the two countries. Then, the world was no longer bi-polar, terrorism was spreading its wings and China was making rapid strides to becoming an economic superpower. Under such prevailing situations, US needed one ideologically solid partner in this part of the world. At the same time, India too has gained little ground at the international level with the disintegration of former Soviet Union. Since then US and India has worked together on many important issues; be it against religious fundamentalism, human rights and peace. The association which began during the time of President George W Bush are still continuing. All US presidents after Mr. Bush were indeed friendly towards India and Indian establishment also reciprocated favourably.
It can be said that Trump’s visit is a continuous process, the process which started during the regime of Mr. Bush, AtalBihari Vajpayee and Dr.Manmohan Singh and resulted in the signing of Indo-US Nuclear Treaty. Over the years the relationship between these two countries stands as a perfect example of trust, mutual respect and pragmatism. Trust and respect in this relationship is evident from the fact that no longer is it being dubbed as an association between a rich and a poor country. America may be the most advanced and most powerful nation. But it never dictated terms in this relationship. The relationship grows naturally and this is why at present in almost all important aspects, US and India are standing on the same platform.
US President Donald Trump’s visit was as expression of this solidarity. Few people may find fault in US selling India advanced military aircrafts and other army assistance. But the fact remains that India needs all these equipment urgently for the modernisation of its armed forces. India has to purchase it either from US or another country. So, it is wrong to dub this act as an effort to please US. Why are the detractors silent about US’s promise to provide energy security to India? One should remember that international relations are dominated by various pulls and pressures. Notwithstanding best of interests, sometimes it becomes difficult for two countries to come close. In such a scenario, the progress of US-India relationship during the last two and a half decades is praiseworthy. It proves India’s growing clout on the world stage.