Neighbourhood Studies
VIF Virtual Talk by H.E. Rahmatullah Nabil, former head of Afghanistan’s NDS

The complete withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan before September 11 is turning out to be a complicated affair. Taliban is gaining a strong foothold in Afghanistan. It has not shown any seriousness in negotiations over intra-Afghan dialogue and has formulated a strategy to gain control of Kabul. Hence many questions arise about the future of Afghanistan and its people. In order to understand the current evolving situation in Afghanistan, Vivekananda International Foundation organized a virtual talk on “Situation in Afghanistan” by H.E. Mr.

Penpa Tsering, the New President of the Central Tibetan Administration, Calls on China to Grant ‘Genuine Autonomy’ to Tibet

Penpa Tsering has been elected as the new Sikyong or President of 17th Tibetan government-in-exile (TGiE), formally known as the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA). This write-up explores the life and policy stance of the newly elected Sikyong, his future course of actions/concerns regarding the resolution of the Sino-Tibetan conflict and his aspirations for the diaspora of the Tibetan community. The article also looks briefly into the structure of CTA, Tibetan Parliament in Exile (TPiE) and the general elections conducted by TGiE.

Politics of Geo-politics: Continuity and Change in India-Nepal Relations; Edited by Lok Raj Baral (2018); 256p; price: 799 ISBN-10: 81-8363-138-9; Publisher Adarsh Books, New Delhi

The edited volume includes multiple perspectives of former diplomats and academicians from India and Nepal. It theorises India-Nepal relations, focussing broadly on economic, security and geopolitical relations. The book was published in 2018, and written with a perspective to highlight the importance of India-Nepal relations in the changing times.

Omar Sadr, Negotiating Cultural Diversity in Afghanistan. Oxon: Routledge, 2020, xiii+242 pp., INR 995, ISBN: 978-1138371057

‘Negotiating Cultural Diversity in Afghanistan’ by Omar Sadr is an account of Afghanistan's multicultural society. The book discusses the challenges that the government faces in ensuring national integration under cultural diversity. The book covers twenty-two years of modern Afghanistan history, beginning from 1992 to the era of civil war i.e. from 1992-2014, which replaced the centralisation of power, with a collapse of the state the political turmoil and demands for ethnic and cultural rights challenging the government (p. 3).

The Pathfinder - VIF Webinar on Connectivity between India and Sri Lanka

On 07 April 2021, Pathfinder Foundation ([PF) and Vivekananda International Foundation organised a webinar on ‘Connectivity between India and Sri Lanka’. Dr Arvind Gupta, Director VIF, welcomed the participants and delivered the opening remarks. The webinar included brief presentations by Professor Rohan Samarajiva, Mr Bipul Chaterjee, Mr Sanjay Chadha, and Dr Ravi Rathnayake, followed by remarks from Mr Abdul Azeez, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sri Lanka. The webinar is part of a series of webinars to understand the prospects of connectivity between India and Sri Lanka.

Discussion on Recent Developments in Myanmar: Implications for India

On 11 February 2021, VIF organised a discussion on ‘Recent Developments in Myanmar: Implications for India’. Dr Arvind Gupta, Director VIF, welcomed the participants and delivered the opening remarks followed by brief presentations by Amb Gopalaswami Parthasarathy, Amb Gautam Mukhopadhya, and Major General Alok Deb. From the VIF, Gen Ravi Sawhney, Dr Sreeradha Datta and Cchavi Vasisht participated in the discussion. Dr Gupta defined the military coup as an unexpected event, though the political tensions were mounting in the country. The discussion aimed to address three major concerns.

Act East Policy and Northeast India

India’s Act East Policy hinges on the development of the eight Northeast states with a view to achieving the foreign policy objective of enhancing ties with neighbouring countries. This book examines large infrastructure development across the region as it is seen pivotal for growth, employment and opening up of the local economy. It assesses the potential of cross-border trade with Myanmar and Bangladesh, some of which is a revival of traditional ties.

Discussion on India-Bangladesh Relations: Opportunities and Challenges

On 21 January 2021, the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) organised VIMRASH on India-Bangladesh Relations: Opportunities and Challenges. Dr Arvind Gupta, Director VIF, introduced Md. Shahriar Alam, M.P. State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Government of Bangladesh and gave opening remarks. Dr Gupta stated that India-Bangladesh relations are diversified and strategic, and in the last decade are in their golden phase of the relationship. Both countries have successfully resolved border and security related issues andfixed their maritime boundaries.

Decoding the Turkey-Pakistan alliance

Over the years, Turkey-Pakistan relations have stood the precarious nature of global politics as well as the turbulence of their domestic politics. Since its creation in 1947, Pakistan has received uncritical support of Turkey irrespective of who is dominating in Ankara- the Kemalist secular military elites or the current Islamist government. Often dubbed as “brother countries”, the affinity between these two nations stems from their common religious background and similar world-views.

Pakistan Insights 2020

Following the success Pakistan Insights 2019 that was based on discussions held in the Pakistan Study Group (PSG) of the Vivekananda International Foundation, it was decided to continue with the Insight series, making it an annual feature. Despite the constraints imposed by COVID-19, the PSG has met virtually and continued to discuss issues relating to Pakistan in a holistic manner, going beyond the headlines. Pakistan Insights 2020 is a comprehensive book that deals with most aspects of Pakistan.

Contact Us