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Mains Practice Questions

  • Q. Indian diaspora can provide the requisite strategic impulse to unlock India's potential as a global power. Discuss.

    09 Mar, 2021 GS Paper 2 Polity & Governance

    Introduction

    According to Global Migration Report 2020, India continues to be the largest country of origin of international migrants with a 17.5 million-strong diaspora across the world, and it received the highest remittance of $78.6 billion from Indians living abroad.

    However, it is not only the economic prospects of the Indian diaspora but their role in lobbying for crucial strategic deals, promoting Indian culture abroad that has helped India to assume the distinction of Global soft power.

    Body

    Significance of Indian Diaspora

    • Economic Front: The migration of less-skilled labor (especially to West Asia) brings remittances to India that have positive systemic effects on the balance of payments.
      • By weaving a web of cross-national networks, the Indian diaspora has facilitated the flow of tacit information, commercial and business ideas, and technologies into India.
    • Diplomatic Engagement: Indian diaspora is one of the richest minorities in many developed countries. Through this strong people-to-people contact has helped to further the nation's diplomacy. For example, the signing of the India-U.S. nuclear deal.
    • Enhancing India’s Soft Power: Indian diaspora through values, music, domestic cuisines, and traditional practices has helped India to establish India as a Brand.
      • The recognition of 21st June as the International Day of Yoga is an example of growing India’s soft power.
    • Political Front: Indian diaspora is not just a part of India’s soft power, but a fully transferable political vote bank as well.
      • Many people of Indian origin hold top political positions in many countries, in the US itself they are now a significant part of Republicans and Democrats, as well as the government.
      • This helps in strengthening bilateral relations.

    Conclusion

    The institutionalization of “diaspora diplomacy” by the Ministry of External Affairs, is a distinct indication for the fact that a country’s diaspora community has become considerably more important as a subject of interest for foreign policy and associated government activities.

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