After the second world war, Europe is seeing the biggest instability in the form of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The world is condemning the aggressive action of Russia. The west has imposed very severe economic restrictions on Moscow which will impact the Russian economy. However, India is in a difficult situation to take any side or any firm stance. In this article, let’s understand the position of India in this whole crisis.
Indian is walking on a tight rope:
There is huge diplomatic pressure on India. China and Pakistan will get their illegitimate advantage. Russia is seeking to gain more support in the backdrop of military action on Ukraine. In this way, Russia will now be seen standing firmly in China’s court. This situation is not good for India. On the other hand, India cannot antagonize the west including the USA. On one side, the USA is India’s strategic partner and largest trade partner on the other side Russia is India’s time tested friend as well as India’s largest Defense partner.
What are India’s major concerns?
- India, as a partner of both Moscow and Washington, has to either take sides or be prepared to deal with the displeasure of both sides.
- The Russia-Ukraine crisis has appeared at the same time as India is in the process of purchasing the Russian S-400 missile system – and New Delhi expects a waiver of US sanctions on it, but it seems difficult in this situation. The Russia-Ukraine conflict would complicate both the delivery of the system and the possibility of a waiver by the President.
- The Russian-Ukraine crisis will make Moscow more dependent on China, and create a regional bloc of which India is not a part.
- In any conflict, Europe worries that Russia will cut off its supply of gas and oil, raising crude oil prices. If the Russia-Ukraine conflict continues, India’s heavy reliance on crude will affect its trade balance. Already tensions have pushed oil prices up over the past month, and analysts say oil prices could reach $150 a barrel if the situation is not resolved.
At the United Nations, India abstains from procedural voting to discuss the situation. The group led by the U.S. agreed to the discussion. The India vote was seen as a drama for both sides, but it came after the Russia-India consultation in Delhi and was seen as a tilt towards Moscow.
Indian Prime minister Modi talked to Russian President Putin after the invasion and talked about the resolution of this situation through talks. India’s immediate priority is to de-escalate tensions while keeping in mind the legitimate security interests of all countries. It aims to achieve long-term peace and stability in the region and beyond.