FB   
 
Powered bysps
        Society for Policy Studies
 
 

 
Why India did not raise Rohingya issue during Modiís Myanmar visit
Posted:Sep 7, 2017
 
Print
Share
  
increase Font size decrease Font size
 
Finding the balance between India’s democratic ideals and security interests has always proven to be unusually hard when it comes to Myanmar. This was more than evident during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s state visit to India’s easternmost neighbour. New Delhi skirted the issue of Myanmar’s horrific treatment of its Rohingya Muslim minority but was able to persuade Naypyidaw to allow India to launch a large-scale aid programme in Rakhine province, the home of the Rohingya and the epicentre of the present violence.
 
There will be many who feel India has said and done far too little on behalf of the Rohingyas. However, this is probably the best that can be expected given the overriding security and geopolitical interests India has with Myanmar. New Delhi, in any case, is hardly in a position to give lectures on humanitarianism when it has rhetorically spoken of expelling of Rohingyan refugees and passed the matter to the Supreme Court.
 
India’s primary interests in Myanmar can roughly be summed up in the following order. One, to build an economic and security relationship that prevent Myanmar from inexorably slipping into the orbit of China. Part of this strategy requires Naypyidaw’s cooperation in building road, port and other transport links between the two countries. Two, ensure the Myanmar military’s continuing cooperation in preventing various Northeastern militants, most notably Naga insurgents, from using Myanmar as a safe haven.
 
Three, preserve and support the country’s stuttering transition into a full-fledged federal democracy. Four, seek to ameliorate the plight of the Rohingyas as well as ensure the already tense relations between Bangladesh and Myanmar do not spiral out of control. Each of these is an ambitious policy goal. And each of them has to be pursued recognising that the dominant ethnic Burmese are extremely sensitive to any external pressure.
 
It helps to see Myanmar as a novice nation-state as far as international norms are concerned. The combination of its decades-long self-imposed isolation from the outside world, its unresolved constitutional structure, hybrid civilian-military political structure and a streak of xenophobia present throughout much of its elite make it very unlike the other Southeast Asian states.
 
Myanmar thought nothing of expelling almost its entire Indian-origin population and, more recently, doing the same to smaller groups of ethnic Chinese — and when Beijing protested, raining shells on Chinese soil.
 
India should seek to make Myanmar think increasingly like most other countries and hope that as it becomes more economically integrated, more democratic and less suspicious of the world it will become more accepting of international norms regarding its internal affairs.
 
 
 
 
 
Print
Share
  
increase Font size decrease Font size
 

Disclaimer: South Asia Monitor does not accept responsibility for the views or ideology expressed in any article, signed or unsigned, which appears on its site. What it does accept is responsibility for giving it a chance to appear and enter the public discourse.
Comments (Total Comments 0) Post Comments Post Comment
Review
 
 
 
 
spotlight image Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo has confirmed his presence for the occasion. In an exclusive interview with INDIA REVIEW & ANALYSIS, Indonesia’s Ambassador to India, Sidharto R.Suryodipuro, reminded Nilova Roy Chaudhury that the first Chief Guest for India’s Republic Day celebrations, in 1950, w
 
read-more
The words of Ho Chi Minh  “Nothing is more precious than independence and liberty” rang true for the people of the erstwhile East Pakistan when, with increasing brutality, the West Pakistani oppression spread across the land, writes Anwar A Khan from Dhaka
 
read-more
In a significant boost to New Delhi's Act East Policy, India and Japan set up the Act East Forum on Tuesday as agreed during Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to India this year for the annual bilateral meeting that would help to focus and catalyse development in India's Northeast.
 
read-more
  United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson reiterated on Friday Washington's warning that “all options are on the table” to meet North Korea's nuclear threat while offering to keep the lines of communication with Pyongyang open.
 
read-more
The 15th trilateral meeting of the foreign ministers of Russia, India and China concluded in New Delhi on Monday with many nuanced takeaways embedded in the joint statement of 46 paragraphs. Reiterating that the forum “is not directed against any other country”, the statement underlined the importance of the establishment o
 
read-more
The first thing that one sees when a flight approaches New Delhi is thick smog that envelopes the city and its lack of greenery.  In almost all other major cities of India lack of greenery is the most obvious sight that one sees when approaching it by air.
 
read-more

Pakistan has agreed to allow the rupee to depreciate after holding talks with the International Mone­tary Fund (IMF) on the country's economy.

 
read-more

Two major global changes in the past year; the ‘Brexit’ referendum and the advent of Donald Trump, writes Sandeep Kaur Bhatia

 
read-more

It is also imperative for India to explore other regions for markets. Its trade deficit with Latin America has been narrowing. Also, its trade with Mexico, Colombia and Guatemala has increased, ...

 
read-more
Column-image

Over the last 25 years, India's explosive economic growth has vaulted it into the ranks of the world's emerging major powers. Long plagued by endemic poverty, until the 1990s the Indian economy was also hamstrung by a burdensome regulat...

 
Column-image

Title: A Ticket to Syria; Author: Shirish Thorat; Publisher: Bloomsbury India: Pages: 254; Price: Rs 399

 
Column-image

Gorichen, a majestic peak in the Eastern Himalayas at an altitude of 22,500 feet, is the highest in Arunachal Pradesh. Beautiful to look at and providing a fantastic view from the top, it is extremely tough climb for mountaineers.

 
Column-image

It is often conjectured if the reason for long-standing conflicts and insurgencies, in the developing world, especially South Asia, is not only other powers fishing in troubled waters but also the keenness of arms industries, mostly Western, to...

 
Column-image

Title: The People Next Door -The Curious History of India-Pakistan Relations; Author: T.C.A. Raghavan; Publisher: HarperCollins ; Pages: 361; Price: Rs 699