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India’s wait & watch policy- But till when?

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Rajyavardhan Singh
Rajyavardhan Singh
incoming 1st year at the national law university - patiala

With the end of the 20 year long United States military involvement in Afghanistan, as the last batch of the American troops left the war-torn country now controlled by the Taliban, it also has marked the end of the ‘forever war’, as declared by the white house multiple times on multiple occasions now. However, with the Taliban gaining totalitarianism in Afghanistan by force, the question contemplating in every Indian mind is whether India engages with the Taliban or not.

Well, as much as this question’s answer, the ‘Wait and Watch’ policy, as given by the External Affairs Minister Mr. S Jaishankar, looks rightly as the foreign policy that India should adopt for engaging with Afghanistan in the near future. But focusing on the impact that America has on India’s foreign policy lately, what India rather should not be doing is to ‘Wait’ for the United States to conclude with a decision and ‘Watch’ whether or not they engage with the Taliban, and then trace up on their footsteps to do and follow the same.

Speaking of, the U.S and Great Britain are currently of the view, and more importantly so, not in the need for recognizing and engaging with the Taliban immediately. Howbeit, for India, we know new challenges are to emerge with the presence of Pakistani influence, potential Chinese funding, and not to forget about the history and ideology of the Taliban, which in all probability results for all Anti-India groups and organizations to operate within and find safe havens in the Afghan soil, and well surely does not take a genius to predict it.

The ‘Wait and Watch’ policy is undoubtedly the best decision the government could come up with but has as many Cons to it, which are not yet so out and discussed in the open. Therefore, the point which I would like to highlight from here is that if India does engage with the Taliban, although to some it may feel very wrong to do so, if we look at our neighbors and the other major players in the region, they are more than ready to recognize and actively engage with them as soon as the Taliban announce their taking of power officially. And in retrospect, if India does not recognize and engage with the Taliban the only consequence foreseeable to one, is stronger but not so reliable friendship with the United States, and yourself getting cut out of the region which very surely you know, does not look like a great bargain.

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Rajyavardhan Singh
Rajyavardhan Singh
incoming 1st year at the national law university - patiala
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