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Jaishankar, senior US Defence official at second IE-FT event

The event is the second in a series of agenda-setting debates organised by The Indian Express and the Financial Times about India’s place in the post-pandemic world.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: May 20, 2021 5:34:12 am
S Jaishankar, World media, indian government failures, indian government, indian diplomat, india pandemic handling, indian expressExternal Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.

At a time when the India-China relationship is at one of the lowest points ever, and India and the United States strengthen their defence, economic, and strategic relationship, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia Lindsey W Ford will be part of online discussions on ‘India, China and the US: A new geopolitical landscape?’, on Thursday.

The event is the second in a series of agenda-setting debates organised by The Indian Express and the Financial Times about India’s place in the post-pandemic world. Foreign policy leaders and thinkers from India and overseas are discussing India’s diplomatic standing in the world, especially in relation to China and the US.

The participants on Thursday will discuss the increased bilateral tensions between India and China over the last year, and how China is seeking to ride its strong economy to a position of regional and global dominance. In this context, how can India position itself in the new world order?

How India’s relationship evolves with the US under President Joe Biden, and how important the US feels India can be to contain China, will also be discussed.

The opening session, Jaishankar’s keynote interview, will be conducted by Jamil Anderlini, Asia Editor of the Financial Times, and C Raja Mohan, Director, Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore, and a Contributing Editor at The Indian Express.

The second keynote interview of the day, of Ford, will be by Katrina Manson, the US Foreign Policy and Defence Correspondent at the Financial Times.

There will also be a discussion on India and China being uneasy neighbours — the participants include former National Security Advisor and former Ambassador to China Shivshankar Menon; Director-General of the Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies and member of the National Security Advisory Board Lt Gen S L Narasimhan; Senior Fellow and Director of the China Program at the Stimson Centre, Yun Sun; and Gideon Rachman, Chief Foreign Affairs Commentator of the Financial Times.

The discussion will focus on the fraught relations between India and China, marked by an unresolved border dispute on the one hand and a steadily deepening economic engagement on the other.

A second panel including Alyssa Ayres, Dean, Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University; Lisa Curtis, Senior Fellow and Director of the Indo-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS); Tanvi Madan, Director of the India Project at the Brookings Institution; and Arun Singh, India’s Ambassador to the US from 2015 to 2016, will discuss India’s relationship with the US and what’s next for it.

They will talk about the deepening ties between the two nations under a series of US administrations, which is expected to continue under President Biden, as Washington looks at New Delhi as a core partner in preserving a US-led rules-based international order, and as a counter-balance to an increasingly assertive China. Also, what role will India’s relations with Russia play in this evolving geopolitical landscape?

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman was the keynote speaker at the first event of the series, which was held online on April 22.

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