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India should implement an unbiased and proactive “Neighbourhood First” strategy that facilitates the Act East policy crucial for India’s long-term security and economic interests in Myanmar. Discuss.

Topic: India and its neighborhood- relations.

2. India should implement an unbiased and proactive “Neighbourhood First” strategy that facilitates the Act East policy crucial for India’s long-term security and economic interests in Myanmar. Discuss. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

The military takeover in Myanmar last February, just days before the newly elected democratic government was to be sworn in, stymied the country’s tenuous transition to democracy, for which a beginning had been made in 2015.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the approach India must take with respect to Myanmar.

Directive word: 

Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you must debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You must give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by giving context about the recent coup in Myanmar.

Body:

First, in brief, trace the development of ties between India and Myanmar since independence.

Next, write about need to engage with Myanmar to implement Neighbourhood First Policy. The economic considerations – the gateway to east Asia, Kaladan project, connectivity, development of north east etc.

Next, write about the security considerations – China factor, insurgency in the north east, illicit drug trade from the golden triangle, refugee crisis etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing a way forward.