India’s designation as a middle power has always been problematic. This has become particularly pronounced in the wake of the 1998 nuclear tests, which were intended to assert the country’s great power status. What is the impact of such aspirations on emerging middle powers? Looking at India’s relations with the region of “Central Eurasia” (encompassing Afghanistan and the post-Soviet states of Central Asia), this study traces India’s struggle to accept its middle power status. Indian policymakers and pundits insist that the country’s interactions with Central Eurasia demonstrate that India has always been a great power. The comparative analysis uncovers an underlying puzzle in India’s international outreach – both in Central Eurasia and globally – namely, its inability to accept the constraints of its middle power status. Hence, the impact of India’s activism has never been predetermined, but subject to conditions which the foreign policy elites in New Delhi have been willing to ignore in order to sustain the image of the country’s great power status.
|Title of host publication||Rethinking Middle Powers in the Asian Century|
|Subtitle of host publication||New Theories, New Cases|
|Publisher||Taylor and Francis|
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2018|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences (all)