Monthly Compilation of Views of VIF Expert Groups: April 2024

During the month, the VIF Pakistan Study Group discussed critical issues shaping Pakistan's current landscape. Among the key topics deliberated were the post-election political dynamics, judiciary crisis, status of political figures Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan, terrorism escalation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, Shehbaz Sharif's Saudi Arabia visit, and Afghanistan-Pakistan relations. Following February's parliamentary elections, tensions surged among major parties, leading to disqualification of PTI-backed SIC by the Election Commission.

Monthly Compilation of Views of VIF Expert Groups: March 2024

During the month, the VIF Neighbourhood Experts Group hosted a roundtable discussion to analyse recent developments in Nepal and their implications for India. It emerged that Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal's removal of the Nepali Congress from the government marked a significant political shift, as he welcomed the Communist Party of Nepal — Unified Marxist-Leninist (CPN-UML) and two other parties to form a new government, reminiscent of previous coalitions since 2022.

International Strategic Engagement Capsule (IN-STEP)

The Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) organised a two-day International Strategic Engagement Programme (IN-STEP) module on March 26-27, 2024, for 37 senior policymakers (both civil and military) including 29 from overseas. The overseas participants came from 21 countries, namely Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Comoros, Guyana, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Oman, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Surinam, Tanzania, and Thailand.

Visiting Delegations Report - February 2024

The Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) was visited by several delegations during the month of February. These included representatives of nine countries, Europe, and a delegation from the SWIFT. Diverse range of issues were discussed, including the global world order, regional security situation, ongoing conflicts, and India’s bilateral relations with the individual countries.

Monthly Compilation of Views of VIF Expert Groups: January 2024

Having joined the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) on 16th January, soon after my superannuation from the Indian Navy on 31 December 2023, I have been assigned the onerous task of editing the ‘Monthly Expert Groups Report’. It is a tall order and I have some very big shoes to fill, considering that my predecessor, Commodore Gopal Suri (Retd.) was handling it. Nevertheless, it would be my endeavour to match up to him. Being my maiden effort, I wish to seek the indulgence of the readers.

Indian Democracy and Governance

The Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) receives a large number of foreign delegations, student groups and individuals who do not have a great deal of familiarity with India but wish to know about the country, its history, geography, civilisation, culture, foreign policy, security challenges, etc. A need has been felt for an authentic and informative set of notes which can be used for briefings and be shared with visiting delegations.

Monthly Compilation of Views of VIF Expert Groups: November - December 2023

As 2023 came to a close, the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) deliberated on regional issues with implications for India as part of the discussions in its Strategic Issues Group. The ongoing Israel–Palestine conflict has serious implications for India and during the deliberations of this Group, it was abundantly clear that the appetite for the two-state solution seems to have dwindled on both sides. Israel’s stated objective of destroying Hamas appears to be very ambitious, considering the widespread resistance to its ideology, both in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

Defence Preparedness – A Study Group Report

The purpose of constituting the Study Group on Defence Preparedness was to delve into the issues confronting the nation’s defence preparedness. The focus herein was directed at preservation of the nation’s territorial integrity in the face of China’s persistence in realigning, unilaterally and by the use of military force, the traditional Indo-Tibet Border; the long-continuing military confrontation astride the India-China Line of Actual Control (LAC) is an obvious preliminary to China’s that grand design.

Monthly Compilation of Views of VIF Expert Groups: October 2023

Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF)has been deliberating on S& T issues that affect our national capabilities in this domain. The S& T Expert Group held a discussion to understand the dynamics of ‘Electronics, Trade and Geopolitics’ wherein India’s capabilities, shortfalls and the required policy to stimulate efforts in these directions were deliberated upon. Global trade has a large component of technology, especially electronics. Increasing India’s share in global tradewill necessitate expansion of India’ electronic goods manufacturing capability.

Climate Change: Reflections on Issues, Challenges and the Way Forward

The Climate Change Expert Group was established at the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) in 2022. It comprises of experts from a wide range of fields, including climate and weather systems, the environment, energy, diplomacy and national security. The expert group’s mandate was to explore ways in which climate change has manifested in India and how it has affected the country’s well- being, national security, foreign policy, contemporary geopolitics and geo-economics. It also aims to provide policy-relevant recommendations in areas pertaining to climate mitigation and adaptation.

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