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Question

What were the implications of disintegration of USSR on India's security and economy?


Solution

Approach:
  1. Give a brief introduction on the Indo-Soviet relations.
  2. Area of dependence of India on Soviet Union.
  3. Fall of Soviet Union and Indian Balance of payment crisis.
  4. Liberalisation of Indian economy and it impacts.
  5. Present status of relation between India and Russia.
  6. Provide a befitting conclusion.
Indo-Soviet relations:
The modern relation between India and Russia was started even before Independence. The Russian revolution gave moral boost to the Indian freedom movement. It was the admiration of the socialist pattern of Soviet Union heavily influenced Indian developmental plans. This socialist leanings can be seen in the developmental planning of independent India.

Indian dependence on Soviet Union: Though India was one of the founding members of the non-alignment movement, tilting of India towards Soviet Union was clearly visible. There are a number of areas of dependence of India on the Soviet Union and most important among them are
  • Major supplier of military hardware
  • Infrastructure development in India
  • Nuclear energy
  • Technological transfers
  • Trading in Barter system
Fall of Soviet Union and Indian balance of payment crisis:
The dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 made a beginning of a new era in world history. It transformed the bipolar world into unipolar world. At the same time India stood in the middle of an economic crisis due to the balance of payment crisis. Though the fall of Soviet have little to do with the economic crisis, it aggravated the crisis as Indian barter trade system came to an end. This led to the restructuring of the Indian policies on the lines of the Bretton Woods conditions.

Impact of the liberalization of the Indian economy:
The economic liberalization of the Indian economy in 1991 led opening up of the Indian markets and change from command model to market model economy. This made India the need to attract more and more foriegn investment into India which resulted in gradual divergence from Russia towards the capitalist countries. But even today Russia remains the major supplier of military hardware to India.

Present status of relation between India and Russia:
Indo-Russian relations still remains vibrant in the number of areas like fossil fuels, nuclear energy, cultural relations and technological transfers.

Conclusion:
The disintegration of the USSR had made India to drift closer to the capitalist world. This also resulted in the diversification of Indian source for military hardware. Today India focusing to reconnect to the Central Asian nations through its connect central Asia policy. Thus it led India to a place of maintaining an equal distance from all powers to pursue its interests.

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