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Parliamentary Panel on ‘India’s Soft power’

GS Paper 2

Syllabus: International Relations


Source: Economic Times

Context: A parliamentary panel has recommended that the ministry of external affairs (MEA) prepare a policy document on India’s soft power projections amid efforts by China to give a mega push to its soft power.

What is Soft Power?

Power is the ability to affect others to get the outcomes one prefers, and that can be accomplished by coercion, payment, or attraction and persuasion. Soft power is the ability to obtain preferred outcomes by attraction rather than coercion or payment.

Elements of Soft power



Need for soft power:

  • Potential in augmenting positive perceptions about a country and its national interests
  • Change in other’s attitudes without competition or conflict
  • India’s civilizational heritage has an advantage over other countries in soft power: According to Brand Finance’s Global Soft Power Index, India ranks 27th in terms of soft power.


Recommendations of the Committee:

  • Prepare a policy document on India’s soft power projection: To delineate India’s soft power toolbox and how it is being projected abroad along with a vision statement for the future
    • Prepare a soft power Matrix
  • Comparative analysis of India’s soft power with other similar countries such as China
    • g., China is estimated to spend about $10 billion a year just on its Confucius Institutes and soft power promotion whereas ICCR (Indian Council of Cultural Relations) and other agencies put together spending around (Rs) 300-400 crore.
    • Most of India’s expenditure goes into the establishment and administration
  • Get recognition for Ayurveda by adopting the pharmacopoeia of India
  • Revamp the focus, structure and functioning of DD India for its global outreach
  • Proactive interaction with the Indian Diaspora is an important part of India’s “soft diplomacy” or “diaspora diplomacy”.
    • For example, the Indian Diaspora played a critical role in the fructification of the Indo-US Nuclear deal
    • They help in building its brand internationally through their huge success stories




Insta Links

Sports as soft power


Mains Links:

Q. What is ‘soft power’? Evaluate the prospects & limitations of the Indian diaspora with respect to the role they can play in India’s soft power and cultural diplomacy. (250 Words)