Neighbourhood Studies
Round Table Discussion on Sri Lanka: Reeling Under the Attack

A round table discussion (RTD) was held on 16th May 2019 at the VIF to discuss the recent terror attacks in Sri Lanka. The discussants included Major General Ashok Mehta, Dr Adil Rashid, Dr Smruti Pattanaik, Prof S D Muni, Dr Sreeradha Datta, Ambassador Anil Wadhwa and Professor Sujit Dutta. Dr Arvind Gupta, Director, VIF, opened the discussion by marking the recent terror attacks in Colombo on 21st April 2019, as the one of the worst and most significant attacks of the recent times.

Trilateral Dialogue: India-Bangladesh-Myanmar

A trilateral dialogue comprising of delegation from Bangladesh, Myanmar and VIF experts examined the possibilities of closer bilateral and regional ties through economic, strategic, cultural and maritime cooperation. Possibilities of strengthening regional collectiveness by creating an environment of cooperation, development and ‘single market’ zones, common border economic zones and communities was discussed. Ways to amicably resolve the Rohingya issue that was the cause of tension between and Bangladesh and Myanmar was also discussed.

Indo-Myanmar Dialogue

A four member delegation from top think tanks of Myanmar discussed various issues under bilateral as well as regional ambit. Bilateral discussions ranged from social, economic and security issues, India’s ‘neighbours first’ policy, connectivity and development and Myanmar’s expectations of India’s support in greater developments in Myanmar and the Indo-Myanmar border regions. Ways for India to fulfil a greater role in regional development was also suggested.

Indo-Bangladesh Bilateral Dialogue

A three member Bangladesh delegation led by former foreign secretary Chowdhury highlighted several of the positive developments along with the outstanding issues that remain between the two neighbours. Views on issues of connectivity corridors, economic growth zones, seamless trade and travel, BIMSTEC, borders, water, non-state actors, besides the regional issues including the role of China, Myanmar and other extra regional players were discussed.

Interaction with Bangladesh Delegation

A delegation of 17 young Members of Bangladesh Parliament interacted with the VIF faculty covering a wide gamut of bilateral issues. While acknowledging India’s interest in generation of many infrastructure development and small development projects, they suggested that India could continue to contribute to the growing economy of Bangladesh.

Afghanistan Manoeuvres: Sense and Nonsense of Talking to Taliban

… every stake holder for Afghanistan’s democracy, stability and progress appreciates the severe consequences of the Taliban assuming power … also understand that even in a power sharing arrangement between the legitimate, democratic Government and the supposedly reformed and accommodative factions of the Taliban, the latter, given its fanatic instincts, would have to be kept in close observation, and guaranteed intervention if necessary … in this context, there are many nuances to the Afghanistan manoeuvres which need to be considered in the background of past, present and future ...

BIMSTEC Think Tank Dialogue on Regional Security - Conference Proceedings

The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is a regional organisation comprising seven littorals of the Bay of Bengal (BoB). The BoB not only connects these nations but binds them together by common culture and interests. The region is also a bridge between South and South East Asia. BIMSTEC is home to around 22% of the global population, a GDP of $ 2.7 trillion and an enviable growth rate of approximately 6.5%.

The Afghanistan Conundrum

… for the United States, pushing the Taliban to join peace talks with Kabul is paramount to ending its 17-year long involvement in the war. But perhaps Washington's biggest problem will be figuring out how to balance the Taliban's demand for a complete withdrawal of U.S. and allied forces … whatever happens there will be huge geopolitical implications …

The Janajati of Nepal

... Janajati groups in Nepal are neither culturally homogeneous nor are they so linguistically ... migrants from other geographical regions, they form the largest cluster ethnic group as their share in the country’s total population is 35.6 percent in 59 heterogeneous communities ... as the aspirations of the disadvantaged groups like the Janajati and Madheshi were not addressed, most of them rejected the constitution ...

Vivekananda International Foundation’s (VIF) Interaction with Maldives Delegation

On 29th of January 2019, the Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) hosted an interaction with a delegation from the Maldives. The Maldives’ delegation was led by Mohamed Jameel Ahmed, former Vice President of the Maldives. Other members of the delegation included Dr Mohamed Jameel Ahmed, former Vice President, Govt. of the Maldives, Shidhatha Shareef, Minister for Gender, Family and Services, Govt. of the Maldives, Adam Shareef, former Minister of Defence and National Security, Govt.

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