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  • The Pakistan Factor in the India–Iran Relationship

    India's relationship with Iran has been uneven owing to external factors. This article traces the role of the Pakistan factor in this relationship, wherein the religious identity of a fellow Islamic nation, the strategic outlook towards Afghanistan, and energy relations between the three countries are discussed. The article outlines the Pakistani primacy in the India–Iran strategic relationship and showcases how Afghanistan is the glue for India–Iran relations despite the breaks in their continuing relationship.

    November 2012

    India–Iran Energy Ties: A Balancing Act

    This article looks at relations between Iran and India, with a focus on energy, in the past as well as currently. It will examine the state of the energy sector in Iran in light of the US-sponsored sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic and the Iranian threat to close off the Strait of Hormuz to shipping. It will analyse what this portends for Iran's position in the international oil and gas market, and the impact this may have on larger India–Iran relations, given that energy is a core factor in their bilateral ties.

    November 2012

    In Pursuit of a Chimera: Nuclear Imbroglio between Sanctions and Engagement

    Efforts undertaken to address concerns generated by the Iranian nuclear issue have primarily followed a dual-track approach made up of punitive non-proliferation and economic sanctions at the multi-lateral and unilateral levels and diplomatic-political engagement across the bilateral, tri-lateral and multi-lateral spectrum. These have, however, not been successful in ‘forcing’ cooperation from Iran on core issues of concern, including in such activities as the stopping of uranium enrichment activities.

    November 2012

    American Shadow over India–Iran Relations

    India's ties with Iran have become an irritant in the India–US relationship. Several scholars have alleged that the US is influencing India's Iran policy. This article examines three cases in which the US is said to have influenced India's position: the Iran–Pakistan–India (IPI) pipeline; India's votes against Iran at the International Atomic Energy Agency; and the Reserve Bank of India's guidelines of December 2010, which stopped oil payments to Iran through the Asian Clearing Union.

    November 2012

    Necessary Oppositions: Domestic Debates on Iran

    For the longest part of the two decades since the end of the Cold War, there were mostly Indian perspectives, rather than debates, on Iran and bilateral relations. Domestic debates on Iran began in 2005 and continued until mid-2008, reaching a crescendo during this period and dissipating soon after. The debates, when they took place, were not about influencing the government's Iran policy.

    November 2012

    India's Iran Policy in the Post-Cold War Period

    The article proposes to trace India's relations with Iran in the post-Cold War period, to identify the highs and lows in its contours and analyse the current situation. No country, however powerful, can formulate and implement its policy towards another in a total vacuum. India's Iran policy, as well as its foreign policy on the whole, reflects its domestic and external concerns and compulsions. India's need to secure its interests and broaden its options is unexceptionable.

    November 2012

    Indo-Iranian Relations during the Cold War

    India and Iran have shared a rich history of civilisational ties for many centuries. The close historical relations were, however, ruined by the British rule and the subsequent loss of contiguity owing to the creation of Pakistan. Iran's alliance with the Western bloc and India's adherence to the principles of non-alignment, albeit with leanings towards the Soviet Union, were the major determinants of Indo-Iranian bilateral relations until 1979. Pakistan, and its impression on the successive Iranian regimes, also played a major role in this relationship.

    November 2012

    Iran: Its Strategic Importance

    One of the most difficult tasks facing the foreign policy makers in India is the requirement to balance the relations with Iran while enhancing proximity with the United States. This invariably raises questions over the importance of Iran. An ancient civilisation, Iran is located at the crucial junction of South Asia and the Middle East. It also links the Central Asian Republics and the Caucasus region to the Arabian Sea. Historically, it has influenced its neighbours, irrespective of the type of government in power.

    November 2012


    In the two decades since the end of the Cold War, the Islamic Republic of Iran has emerged as one of the two most debated, contested and commented upon foreign policy issues in India. The other has been the US. The US has remained the pre-eminent global player, following the disintegration and demise of the USSR. Despite its preference for multi-polarity, India, like many other countries, had to recognise the new US-dominated world order and calibrate a policy that was radically different from the one it followed during the Cold War era.

    November 2012

    FOREIGN POLICY AFTER TAHRIR REVOLUTION: (Re)-Defining the Role of Egypt in the Middle East

    Recently, we have witnessed an unprecedented series of political events in the Middle East and North Africa after a young man from Tunisia had his vegetables confiscated by the police. In retaliation, the young man set himself on fire, which initiated inextinguishable flames of protests and demonstrations demanding a more humane world for everyone. Protests and strikes driven by everyday people continued to sweep across the tightly controlled North African states. However, not everybody treated these unrests as a deep, socially rooted problem in society.

    September 2012