India - USA IAS Target

India and United State of America Relations

16 Jul 2019

Category : International Relations

Topic: India and United State of America Relations


India–United States relations, also known as Indian–American relations are the international relations between the Republic of India and the United States of America. Earlier is the largest democracy of the world, while the latter is the oldest democracy of the world. Renowned leaders of India's freedom movement had friendly relations with the United States of America which continued well after independence from the United Kingdom in 1947. After Independence Pakistan became USA's close pal and India cultivated strategic and military relations with the Soviet Union to counter United States –Pakistan relations.
In 1961, India became a founding member of the Non-Aligned Movement to shun involvement in the Cold War power-play between the United States and the Soviet Union. The support of USA for Pakistan during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 was like the USA sent a nuclear submarine to deter India during the 1971 war, influenced India-USA relations until the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Importance of India to USA

India is an important partner for the United States. India is considered a major player in South-Asia, which is a core interest of the USA. Geographically, India lies between the two most immediate problematic regions for U.S. national interests. The arc of instability where militant and terrorism spread from North Africa goes through the Middle East, and proceeds to Pakistan and Afghanistan ends at India’s western border. The Indian ocean is the only ocean named after any country. With the rise of Asian economies, the Indian Ocean is home to crucial global sea-lines of communication with about 50% of the world container products and above 70% of petroleum and ship-borne oil traffic transiting through its waters. This region is also important for China, which fear choking important sea lines of communication from where all oil supply of china in the backdrop of a new arrangement of QUAD and new global partnership in the wake of an expansionistic attitude of China.
India’s emerging national capabilities give it ever greater tools to pursue its national interests to the benefit of the United States. In terms of militaries, India holds the world’s third-largest Army, fourth-largest Air Force, and fifth largest Navy. All three of these services are modernizing, and the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy have top-notch technical resources, and its Army is seeking more of them. At the same time, the USA sees India as a major defence buyer of its arms and a big market for USA companies. India’s broad diplomatic ties globally (most importantly in the Middle East), its aspirations for United Nations (UN) Security Council permanent membership, and its role in international organizations like the International Atomic Energy Agency makes New Delhi an effective voice in calls to halt proliferation. India's faultless record in arms, whether non-conventional, or conventional makes a natural choice of the USA to safeguard proliferation, where North Korea, Iran, and Pakistan become a menace to global peace.
India’s position against terrorism and radicalism correspond with that of the United States. India’s English-speaking and Western-oriented choice and middle classes comfortably partner with their counterparts in U.S. firms and institutions, including more than 2.8 million Indian Americans. The U.S. higher education system is an incubator of the future alliance, with more than 100,000 Indian students in American universities. India-USA has vast potential for an economic relationship, both countries striving to seal trade deal and hopeful for early agreement. As India grows and modernizes it will spend trillions of dollars on transportation, infrastructure, energy production and distribution, and defence equipment. U.S. firms can benefit massively by providing expertise and technology that India will require to carry out this sweeping transformation. Indian culture and diplomacy has generated goodwill in its extended neighbourhood. New Delhi has good relations with significant states in Central Asia, in the Middle East, in Southeast Asia, and with important middle powers such as Brazil, South Africa, and Japan—all of the strategic value to the United States. Indian democracy has thrived despite endemic poverty, extraordinary ethnic, religious, and linguistic diversity; and foreign and internal conflicts.

Importance of USA to India

  • America remains a vital soothing power in Asia amid its armed and political power plan and promises to the county.
  • The 20th century abides witness to multi-generation U.S. determinations to thwart the appearance of any antagonistic hegemon on the Eurasian landmass, a purpose that the United States go on to complete at the moment with the help of its Asian associates.
  • China has decided on every so often to disregard international limitation standards, an outline of comportment that the United States has assiduously requested to limit. No country can avoid upcoming Chinese propagation actions; simply a U.S. led global grapple has any possibility of triumph.
  • India will be well-equipped to defend its general welfare in Pakistan and Afghanistan under the management of the United States.
  • While China enmity to any democratic voice. Even china assisted military and dictatorship in various countries (in Myanmar, Pakistan, Thailand, African countries etc). So India and USA are good pals to give voice to people against states which don’t respect the human and democratic rights
  • China is flaunting with rule of law like currency manipulation, no market access and robbery of intellectual knowledge, etc where both countries have a common interest to defend global order based on the rule of law.

India-USA civil nuclear partnership

The 123 Agreement signed between the United States of America and the Republic of India is known as the U.S.–India Civil Nuclear Agreement or Indo-US nuclear deal. Under this structured agreement, India agreed to split its civil and military nuclear facilities and place all its civil nuclear facilities under International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards and, in exchange, the United States agreed to work toward full civil nuclear cooperation with India. An India-IAEA safeguards (inspections) agreement and the grant of a unique exemption for India by the Nuclear Suppliers Group because of India's remarkable record in arms (conventional and non-conventional) non-proliferation. India also signed an India-specific safeguards agreement with the IAEA. The deal is seen as a watershed in the US-India relations and introduces a new facet to international nonproliferation efforts. On 1 August 2008, the IAEA approved the protection agreement with India, after which the United States approached the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to grant a waiver to India to begin civilian nuclear trade. The 48-nation NSG granted the waiver to India permitting India to access civilian nuclear technology and fuel from other countries.
The implementation of this waiver made India the only known country with nuclear weapons which is not a party to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) but is still permitted to carry out nuclear commerce with the rest of the world. The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) is a multilateral export control regime and a group of nuclear supplier countries that seek to shield nuclear proliferation by controlling the export of equipment, technology, and materials that can be used to produce nuclear weapons. The NSG was established in response to the Indian nuclear test in May 1974 and first introduced in November 1975. The test demonstrated that certain non-weapons specific nuclear technology could be readily turned to weapons development. Nations already signatories of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) saw the requirement to further limit the export of nuclear equipment, materials, or technology.


India’s relationship with the United States remains crucial to its own objectives, but it is also vague. The asymmetry of power between the two countries is such that the relationship, if potentially useful, is not necessary for the United States while potentially chancy for India. Moreover, the shift of the political centre of gravity of Asia — resulting from the growing enmity between China and the US — is eroding the foundations of India’s policy in Asia, while prospects for greater economic interaction is limited by India’s slow pace of reforms. Comparing the existing blockade in nuclear cooperation with India to an “800 pound elephant”, the UN has said the conclusion of the Indo-US nuclear deal will be considered a milestone in the bilateral relations which will be reached to the next level. The Nuclear deal also significant because India isn’t a participant in the nuclear non-proliferation treaty despite being a nuclear weapons nation. The Indo-US civil nuclear deal won’t be the end of moving the Indian-US relationship ahead.