27 October, 2020

A Himalayan Blunder

In the only country Modi has visited twice since assuming office, anti-India feeling now runs deep.

Illustration by Saahil
A Himalayan Blunder
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Narendra Modi’s 29 foreign trips have given Brand India a global push, reignited the Indian diaspora, and brought joy to his ‘bhakts’ back home—and he’s just embraced all 54 countries of the African continent with equal ardour in one go. Here’s the reality check. In that same period, his government’s policy in India’s neighbourhood has been little short of a disaster. Modi and his Nat­ional Security Advisor A.K. Doval are now being seen as schoolyard bullies trying to impose solutions tailored in the PMO without considering the int­ernal complexities and challenges in Kathmandu, Male or Islamabad. Nepal is the starkest example of this approach. In the only country Modi has visited twice since assuming office, anti-India feeling now runs deep and the PM’s stock has nosedived. That’s an accomplishment worthy of a Guinness Book entry for a ‘Hindu nationalist party’ which arrogantly assumes a hegemonic link with what used to be the world’s only Hindu kingdom.

The problem, clearly, is...

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