UPSC SYLLABUS

International Relations (International Relations (Mains))

UPSC Syllabus

  • India and its neighborhood- relations.
  • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests,
  • Indian diaspora
  • Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate

India’s Foreign Policy

  • Evolution and Challenges
    • Evolution of India’s foreign policy (Including NAM, Look East and Gujral Doctrine)
    • Determinants and challenges of India’s Foreign Policy
  • Recent Policies
    • Neighborhood first policy
    • Act east policy
    • Link west policy
    • Indian ocean outreach
    • Soft Power and Hard Power diplomacy
    • Defence and Nuclear Diplomacy
    • Space diplomacy
    • Para diplomacy-A New Way for Indian  Foreign Policy?
    • Middle Power Coalition
    • Significance of PMO in foreign policy making
    • India’s Strategic Connect with the World
    • Rise of Realpolitik in India’s Foreign Policy in recent times
    • Indian Diaspora

India and Its Neighbours

  • India-China
    • Border dispute
    • China’s string of pearls
    • China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Prospects and Pitfalls
      • Maritime Silk Road” linking the Indian and Pacific Oceans
      • Why India is alarmed regarding BRI?
    • India’s trade deficit with China
    • China’s Malacca Dilemma
    • 2+1 Dialogue mechanism proposed by China
    • A rising China: Challenges the US primacy in Asia and role of India
    • Chinese project of diverting Tibetan waters
    • South China Sea: objection of China to   India’s presence
    • China denies CPEC backing as ‘debt trap’ for Pakistan (Debt trap diplomacy of China)
    • The Unintended Consequences of India’s Policy on Citizenship for Tibetan Refugees
    • Indias Concern in Joining RCEP    
    • China’s Economic Slowdown
  • India-Pakistan
  • Indo-Pak Relations : Border Dispute and J&K issue
    • Terrorism emanating from Pakistan
    • Indus waters policy shift
    • Dispute over Gilgit-Baltistan
    • CPEC in PoK
    • Nuclear India-Pak-US
    • Indian stance regarding Baluchistan
  • India Bhutan
    • Bhutan’s significance for Indian Foreign policy
    • India-Bhutan Friendship Treaty
    • Objection of Bhutan to India’s Motor vehicle agreement
    • Bhutan’s rejection of China’s BRI
  • India-Nepal
    • Indo-Nepal Relations : Fluctuating ties
    • Nepal’s tilt towards China
    • Nepal-China Transit Agreement: An Evaluation
    • India’s concern about Nepal’s new Constitution
    • The Issue of Water and Hydropower Cooperation
    • Nepal Bharat Maitri Project
  • India-Myanmar
    • Democracy in Myanmar
    • Scope for cooperation between N-E India & Myanmar
    • Rohingya issue
    • Buddhist Chauvinism
    • Major Projects: Kaladan multi-modal corridor, India-Myanmar- Thailand trilateral highway
  • India-Bangladesh
    • Indo-Bangladesh Relations
    • Water Dispute Teesta water issue & Ganga river dispute
    • Bangladesh demand to stop the construction of the Tipaimukh Hydro- Electric Power Project on the Barak River
    • Differences in approach of India and China towards Bangladesh
    • Illegal Immigration
    • Understanding Bangladesh’s Unexpected Development Success
  • India-Afghanistan
    • Instability in Afghanistan and role of India
    • India’s cooperation in Afghanistan               
    • Moscow Format
  • India-Maldives
    • Geostrategic Importance of Maldives
    • Recent developments in Maldives exemplifying recalibration of ties
    • FTA Between China and Maldives - Warning For India
  • India-Srilanka
    • Sino-Sri Lanka Relationship
    • Fishermen issue
    • Issues on 13th amendment (Tamil & Minority Rights)
    • Human Right violations & OHCHR Resolution on Sri Lanka
  • Indian Ocean Region
    • Indian Ocean region and world affairs
    • India is a “Net Security Provider” of the Indian Ocean
    • Increasing Chinese influence in the Indian Ocean
    • 20 years of formation of IORA
    • Piracy in the Indian Ocean
    • Seychelles’ parliament refusal to ratify an Indian naval base plan on the Assumption Island         
    • Importance of Seychelles to India
  • Indo-Pacific
    • Concept of Indo-Pacific from perspectives different countries
    • East Asia Summit acts as a bridge for Indo-Pacific region
    • India-Pacific Regional Dialogue
  • SAARC/BIMSTEC/BBIN
    • SAARC: Challenges and Prospects
    • Intra-low regional trade
    • BIMSTEC as an alternative to SAARC
    • Nepal withdrew from first ever BIMSTEC’s military drill in India.
    • Progress of BBIN project
  • Global Issues
    • Disarmament
    • Climate Change
    • Terrorism
    • Global Governance
    • Indian Diaspora

India and Extended Neighbourhood

  • India-Indonesia
    • Indonesia’s vision as a “Global Maritime Axis.” and it’s significance for India
  • India-Singapore
    • India-Singapore Bilateral Agreement for naval cooperation
  • Thailand
    • Indo-Thai relations: Challenges & opportunities
  • India-Vietnam
    • India -Vietnam’s strategic cooperation
  • India-ASEAN
    • Importance of ASEAN in establishing peace and stability in region
    • ASEAN-India Relations: Prospects and Challenges in Economic Partnership
    • India’s cooperation with the ASEAN has been less than China and Japan

Central Asia

  • Connect Central Asia Policy
    • Importance of central Asia
    • Golden Crescent
    • Connectivity Projects (INSTC, Ashgabat Agreement, TAPI Pipeline)
  • India Mongolia
    • India-Mongolia Bilateral Cooperation
    • Mongolia launched construction of first strategically oil refinery,  constructed by India

West Asia/Middle East

  • Importance of West Asia for India
  • Change in West Asian strategic thinking
  • China’s engagement in West Asia and challenges to India
  • Reasons behind India’s active strategic engagements with West Asian countries  without participating in West Asian turmoil
  • Shia-Sunni wedge in West Asian countries
  • Importance of Saudi Arabia, Challenges  in India-Saudi Arabia Relations
  • Plight on Indian migrant workers.
  • Relations between India and United Arab Emirates
  • Middle East to India Deep water Pipeline (MEIDP)
  • India-Iran
    • Consolidating India-Iran Cooperation
    • Connectivity- Importance of Chabahar port
    • Iran nuclear deal: Iran Sanctions & India’s Options
  • India Israel:
    • From ‘in the closet’ into a fast-developing open relationship
    • strategic significance of the Indo-Israeli relationship
    • De-hyphenation of Israel and Palestine

India and World

  • India-Africa
    • India-Africa Trade relations: Prospects
    • Contribution of Indian Diaspora in various fields in Africa.
    • African co-operation in ensuring security and peace in Indian Ocean region
    • India’s Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Africa’s hydrocarbon sector.
    • Strategic Partnership between India and South Africa
  • India-Europe
    • The first India-Nordic Summit
    • What is GDPR? its implication for India
    • influx of refugees into Europe
    • irritants between India-EU (FTA)
    • A new European Union strategy for India
    • Ukrainian Crisis’ has lead to resurgence of cold war
    • Brief on India-UK relations
    • Brief on India-France relations
  • India and USA
    • Brief of India-US relations
    • Mutually supportive Defence cooperation relationship
    • logjams in implementation of civil nuclear cooperation agreement between India and the USA
    • Bilateral Social Security Agreements
    • The rise of protectionist regime in USA and the challenges for the Indian
    • Importance of New Security strategy (NSS) of USA for India
    • Recent US extraterritorial Sanctions and their potential impacts on India
    • Potential impact of US sanctions towards Russia, Iran and North Korea using CAATSA on US-India relation,
    • USA pulls out of INF treaty-Its implication for India
    • Pivot to the East policy of the USA
    • The Arithmetic of India-U.S. Relations and the Russian Factor
    • The First India-US 2+2 Dialogue: An Assessment
    • Challenges in Implementing JCPOA after the US Withdrawal
    • LEMA-Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement
    • Visa, Free Trade and WTO
  • India-Canada
    • Uranium Deal
  • India-Russia
    • India’s increasing defence deal with USA, Israel
    • Russian arms deal with Pakistan
    • Stagnation between India-Russia Relations
    • Russian proposal of ‘Eurasian Economic Union
  • India-Japan
    • Japan’s funding of major projects in India
    • Nuclear Pact
    • Japan’s Pacifism
    • 13th annual India - Japan summit
  • India-Australia
    • Australia’s “An India Economic Strategy to 2035”, a vision document
    • Nuclear cooperation between India- Australia

International Organisaton and Global Issues

  • United Nation and UNSC
    • UNSC Reforms : Importance and Challenges
  • BRICS
    • Advantages of setting up the New Development Bank
    • Prospects and Challenges of BRICS
  • Commonwealth
    • Shared history of Commonwealth
    • Relevance in current time and Areas of Cooperation
  • Shanghai Cooperation Organization
    • Benefits and challenges of India’s entry in SCO
  • IMF – The International Monetary Fund:
    • issues concerning the reforms in Bretton Wood twins and needs structural reforms to reflect post globalization  realities of the world
  • NATO – The North Atlantic Treaty Organization:
    • Relevance of NATO in post USSR era
  • TPP – The Trans-Pacific Partnership:
    • Will RCEP prove to be a competitor of TPP in the Asia-Pacific region
  • WTO – The World Trade Organization:
    • Doha round and Singapore Agenda: Challenges in implementation         
    • USA-India dispute
    • Need to revamp WTO
  • Arctic Council:
    • Arctic is attracting global interest
  • IAEA
    • India’s nuclear facilities under IAEA safeguards
  • UK Referendum – Brexit
    • Consequences of Brexit for United Kingdom and European Union,
    • Effect of Brexit on China and India
  • Refugee problem:
    • Does the world need a new UN convention on refugees
    • United Nations member states (except the U.S. and Hungary) agreed on a Global Compact for Migration to better manage international migration
  • Terrorism:
    • Reasons of rise of far right wing politics in many developed and developing countries
    • The Comprehensive Convention on  International Terrorism (CCIT)
    • UNSC’s 1267 Al Qaeda Sanctions
      Committee on Jaish-e-Mohammad Chief Masood Azhar        
    • Security Council Resolution 2322 to   enhance the efficacy of international  legal and judicial systems
    • Lone-wolf attacks.
  • Yemen Crisis-
    • Yemen Crisis: Reasons and impacts
  • South China Sea
    • Contention over South China Sea and South China Sea Ruling
    • Senkaku and Diaoyu conflict between China and Japan
    • Role of India in the wake of increasing South China Sea dispute
  • Other
    • World coming towards a new multi-polar order with USA as a waning superpower and China-Russia axis as an emerging challenger
    • India and the International Solar Alliance
    • Venezuela-Columbia Border Issue
    • AIIB & The Changing World Order
    • Multilateral export control regimes : Significance and challenges of India’s Entry
    • US-Venezuela Stand-off : Impact on Global Oil Prices
    • Renaissance and Reticence in India’s            North-South Connectivity Platform
    • Strategic Petroleum Reserves: Stocking  Oil for Rainy Days
    • QUAD: Strategic and economic benefits
    • India has been accorded associate member status by IEA,: Its importance for India
    • Why RIC is as important to India as JAI and BRICS?
    • Rising Protectionism and Currency Wars
  • Indian Diaspora
    • Role played by Indian Diaspora
    • Issue of safety of Indians abroad
    • Schemes for Welfare of Overseas Indian
    • Indian Diaspora in Gulf
  • Nitaqat law and Present Status

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