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A dark shadow on New Delhi’s credibility

  • Published
    5th Dec, 2023

Context:

The way India handles the American indictment against an Indian will shape its global image and long-term consequences.

Espionage, Covert Operations, and Public Image

  • Unwritten Rule: In espionage, avoiding detection is key; in public diplomacy, avoiding lies is crucial. Recent events pose challenges.
  • Allegations' Impact: U.S. indictment against an Indian for targeting Khalistani separatists raises credibility questions for India in covert and public spheres.
  • Legal and Diplomatic Concerns: The allegations test India's credibility in covert capacities and public messaging, demanding a thorough response.

Trust Deficit in Intelligence Sharing

  • Legal Challenges: Recent intelligence operations, legal challenges in friendly countries, and the U.S. indictment indicate trust deficits.
  • Incomplete Information: U.S. caution to India without full disclosure hints at gaps in intelligence sharing and bilateral cooperation.
  • Broader Implications: Trust issues in intelligence-sharing impact not just India-U.S. relations but raise questions about India's actions among western allies.

Diplomatic Strategy and Global Image

  • Double Standards: India's varied responses to allegations from Canada and the U.S. reflect double standards, impacting its global image.
  • Neighbourhood Impact: The case's repercussions on South Asian nations demand strategic reassurance to address concerns about Indian agencies' activities.
  • Image Projection: The lasting impact depends on whether India presents itself as a "hard power" or adherent to international law and diplomacy.
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