Issue Brief on “Modi’s Maritime Ambitions – Implications for Pakistan”

Traditionally, India has maintained itself as a land focused country and concentrated on developing its land capabilities. However, in the background of the emerging dynamics of international diplomacy and security, India has recently begun to focus its attention towards managing the oceans, especially the Indian Ocean, more seriously under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

It seems clear that India has decided to expand its influence in the Indian Ocean, and for that reason it has taken some major steps. In March 2015, Modi travelled to the Indian Ocean islands states — Mauritius and Seychelles — to outline India’s first ever policy for the Indian Ocean. The policy is called SAGAR — Security and Growth for All in the Region. In Sanskrit, “Sagar” also means the sea. India also acquired infrastructure development rights to develop two islands ‘Agalega’ from Mauritius, and ‘Assumption’ from Seychelles during the same visit.[1] However, in March 2018, in an unprecedented security breach, the classified agreement signed by India to develop military facilities and station Indian military personnel at Seychelles’s Assumption Island has been leaked online, raising questions about whether the project’s details will need to be reworked.[2]

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