‘Modi Doctrine’ overcomes hesitations of history: U.S.

Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi, prime ministerial candidate for India's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), addresses a rally in the northern Indian city of Agra November 21, 2013. Modi used a large rally in the historic city of Agra on Thursday to push his Hindu nationalist agenda in a key election state where the sizeable Muslim minority eyes his campaign with alarm. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee (INDIA - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

Describing the just-concluded visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi here as “historic”, the Obama administration has named his vision of Indo-U.S. ties as “Modi Doctrine” that has overcome the “hesitations of history” and working for the betterment of the global good.

“The most important outcome in my mind of the visit this week and of the years of effort that preceded it is the clear and compelling vision that was laid out by Prime Minister Modi before joint session of the U.S. Congress,” Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal said.

“This vision which I have come to call the Modi Doctrine laid out a foreign policy that overcomes the hesitations of history and embraces the convergence between our two countries and our shared interests,” Ms. Biswal told a Washington audience.

Ms. Biswal, the Obama Administration’s point person for South and Central Asia, said this at a discussion on “Security and strategic outcomes from the Modi visit” organised on Thursday here jointly by the U.S.-based Heritage Foundation and the New Delhi-based India Foundation, both think tanks.

Mr. Modi, she said, in his speech furthered his bold vision of India-U.S. partnership that could anchor peace, prosperity and stability from Asia to Africa, from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific and help ensure the security of the sea lanes of commerce and freedom of navigation on the seas.

“This Modi Doctrine notes that the absence of an agreed security architecture creates uncertainty in Asia and reiterates India’s adherence to and calls for others’ support for international laws and norms,” Ms. Biswal said.

India, she said, was now a key element of the Obama administration’s rebalance to Asia, a strategy which recognised that America’s security and prosperity increasingly depended on the security and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific.

U.S. Ambassador to India Richard Verma said Washington welcomed and shared the Prime Minister’s vision.

“We have made a clear and strategic choice to support India’s transition to become, as Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar has articulated, a leading power. Our actions, as security partners in every sense of the word, speak to this endeavour,” he said.

Indian Ambassador to the U.S. Arun K. Singh said: “There is a need to build confidence and to build the habit of working together.”

On the political side, he said: “We are finding that even though we may not agree on every aspect there is an increasing convergence in our interest and assessment of issues.”
Mr. Singh said the two countries had recognised that clean energy would be an important area of partnership.

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