Challenge and Strategy: Rethinking India's Foreign Policy examines India's foreign policy options in order to ensure that the country retains its space for manoeuvre, to follow an independent foreign policy in the 21st century global scenario.
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Rajiv Sikri was a career diplomat for more than 36 years with the Indian Foreign Service. He retired in 2006 as Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs. In this capacity he had overall responsibility for India's relations with East Asia, ASEAN, Pacifi c region, the Arab world, Israel, Iran and Central Asia. Earlier he was Special Secretary for Economic Relations supervising foreign economic relations, including India's external technical and economic assistance programmes. He has served as India's Ambassador to Kazakhstan, and headed the Departments dealing with West Europe as well as the Soviet Union and East Europe in the Ministry of External Affairs. His other diplomatic assignments abroad include Deputy Chief of Mission in Paris, Political Counsellor in Moscow, Deputy Consul General and Commercial Consul in New York, and Political First Secretary in Kathmandu.Review:
The book under review is a good exposition of India’s foreign policy and its evolution in terms of political, economic and strategic depth...It is beautifully structured in thematic forms in dealing with India’s relations with individual countries. Important issues such as energy security, economic diplomacy, defence and diplomacy and India’s strategic choices are given separate treatment....The bibliography listed at the end of the book is impressive. In terms of production, compliments are due to SAGE. The language used in the book is devoid of jargon and makes for lucid reading. The book will be a valuable addition to knowledge.(India Quarterly)
With many out-of-the-box ideas and policy suggestions, the book makes a valuable contribution to the ongoing debate on foreign policy with India as the strategic country...the book can serve as an important source material for students of Indian politics, international relations and defence and strategic studies and for others interested in India’s foreign policy.(The Organiser)
The book...issues a clarion call to "Rethink" our country’s foreign policy.... Sikri’s spirited analysis is a welcome addition to the growing literature on our foreign policy and relations. Coming from someone so closely and intimately involved with the making and implementation of our country’s foreign policy for long years and especially someone who quit the sanctuary in protest, the book is particularly enlightening to those who are familiar with the scene.(Freedom First)
Sikri’s book is a reminder of what has gone wrong with India’s foreign policy as well as what needs to be set right at the level of the MEA and other policymaking institutions in the country. The book is written lucidly and should be essential reading for those interested in understanding the current foreign policy of India.
By any standards, this book is indeed a valuable addition to the many books on the basics, the evolution and the myriads nuances of India’s foreign policy since independence.... Written in excellent prose, this book is a must-read for the strategic community both inside and outside the government.(USI Journals)
Sikri presents us with a lucid and analytical narrative on India’s foreign policy. It is deeply reflective study which lays emphasis on ‘should’ and ‘must’ of the policy than it’s ‘what and why aspects. It will be welcomed both by the policy-makers and analysts of the subject.(Mainstream)
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