India’s external relations Notes Class 12 Political Science

Follow US On

12 Class Political Science – II Chapter 4 India’s external relations Notes

ClassClass 12
SubjectPolitical Science 2nd book
ChapterChapter 4
Chapter NameIndia’s external relations
CategoryPolitical Science

Class 12th Political Science – II Chapter 4 India’s external relations Notes here we will be learn about Principles of Foreign Policy; India’s Changing Relations with Other Nations: US, Russia, China, Israel; India’s Relations with its Neighbours: Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Myanmar; India’s Nuclear Programme etc.

Foreign Policy : –

🔹 Foreign Policy is a framework within which the Government of a given country conducts its relations with the outside world in different formats i.e. bilateral , regional and multilateral or global.

Developing Countries and Foreign Policy : –

🔹 The developing countries lack the required resources to effectively advocate their concerns in the international system. So they focus more on peace and development in their own neighborhood. Moreover , their economic and security dependence on the more powerful States occasionally influences their foreign policy. 

🔹 After the second world war , many developing nations chose to support the foreign policy preferences of the powerful countries who were giving them aid or credits. This resulted in the division of the countries of the world into two blocs :

  • 1. United States and its western allies.
  • 2 Soviet Union and its eastern allies.

India’s Foreign Policy : –

🔹 India’s Foreign Policy is influenced by both domestic and international factors. The foreign policy of independent India vigorously pursued the dream of a peaceful to world by advocating the policy of non alignment , by reducing the cold war tension and by contributing human resources to the UN peacekeeping force . India advocated non alignment as the ideal foreign policy approach.

Nehru’s Role in India’s Foreign Policy : –

🔹 Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru played a significant role in setting the national agenda. He was also the Foreign Minister so he greatly influenced the formulation and implementation of India’s Foreign Policy from 1946 to 1964

The three major objectives of Nehru’s foreign policy : –

🔹 His Foreign Policy was based on three major objectives :-

  • To preserve the hard – earned sovereignty.
  • To protect territorial integrity of India.
  • To promote rapid economic development.

Principles of India’s foreign policy : – 

🔹 The Principles of India’s foreign policy and its objectives are closely interlinked with each other. Some of these principles are discussed below : –

  • NAM 
  • Panchsheel ( five principles of peaceful co – existence ) 
  • Staunch supporter of the decolonisation process 
  • Firmly opposed Racism , especially apartheid in South Africa 
  • Peaceful world 
  • Independently and actively participation in international affairs 
  • Disarmament 

🔹 While adhering to these core principles , India has continuously adapted to the changing external circumstances and shifting domestic needs. Economic dimensions are now an important element in India’s foreign policy.

Panchsheel : –

🔹 Nehru signed a peace agreement with China and advocated adherence to five guilding principles known as Panchsheel. 

🔹 Panchsheel was signed on 28th April , 1954 and since then it has become a guiding principle of India’s bilateral relations with other countries also.

🔹 Panchsheel includes the following five principles of foreign policy :-

  • Mutual respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.
  • Non – aggression against each other.
  • Non – interference in each other’s internal affairs.
  • Equality and mutual benefit.
  • Peaceful co – existence.

Afro – Asian Unity : –

🔹 Throughout 1940’s and 1950’s , Nehru had been an ardent advocate of Asian Unity. Under his leadership , India convened the Asian Relations Conference in March 1947 , five months ahead of attaining its independence. Convened an international conference in 1949 to support Indonesia’s freedom struggle from the Dutch colonial regime.

🔹 The Afro Asian Conference was held in the Indonesian city of Bandung in 1955 commonly known as the Bandung Conference. The Bandung Conference later led to the establishment of the Non – Aligned Movement ( NAM ).

Policy of Non – Alignment : –

🔹 Non – alignment is a core element to maintain independence in foreign affairs by not joining any military allaince formed by the USA and Soviet Union. It postulates taking an independent stand on international issues according to the merits of each case but at the same time not committing to coming under the influence of any military bloc.

Non – Aligned Movement ( NAM ) : –

🔹 The First Summit of the NAM was held in Belgrade in September 1961 under the leadership of Josip Broz Tito of Yugoslavia , Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt , Jawaharlal Nehru of India , Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana and Sukarno of Indonesia.

Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes : –

🔹 This principle has been included in the Constitution of India , under the Directive Principles of State Policy as well as in the Charter of the UN. India has played leading role in the resolution of Korean conflict and supported negotiated settlement of Palestine issue , Kashmir problem , border problems with neighbouring countries and other such disputes.

India’s Changing Relations with Other Nations : –

🔹 India’s relations with other nations are an important part of India’s foreign policy. It is discussed below in detail.

India’s Relationship with USA : –

🔹 During the cold war years , India was close to the USSR. After the collapse of the USSR , India has liberalised its economy and integrated it with the global economy.

🔹 India – US bilateral relations today not only encompass the major pillars of our strategic partnership including security , energy and technology – but have deepened with greater bilateral economic engagement and ever increasing people.

🔹 India – US relations have become increasingly multi – faceted , covering cooperation in areas such as trade , defence and security , education , science and technology , civil nuclear energy , space technology and applications , environment , and health.

🔹 The US is India’s largest trading partner in goods and services. 

  • The overall India – US bilateral trade in goods and services has increased from US $ 126 billion in 2017 to US $ 142 billion in 2018. 
  • In 2019-2020 the bilateral trade between the USA and India stood at USD : 88.75 billion. 

🔹 Cooperation in counter – terroris with intelligence sharing , information exchange , operational cooperation and sharing of counter – terrorism technology and equipment. 

  • The US absorbs about 65 % of India’s total export in the software sector. 
  • 300,000 Indians work in Silicon Valley. 
  • 15 % of all high tech starts – up are by the Indian – American. 
  • 35 % of the technical staff of Boeing is estimated to be of Indian Origin. 

🔹 The Indian American community enjoys great reputation and significant influence on the American society and polity with its large number of professionals , business entrepreneurs and educationalists marking their positive presence on the national scene. Almost 40 % of Indians in the United States have a master’s , doctorate or other professional degree , which is about five times the national average.

India’s Relationship with Russia : – 

🔹 India’s relations with Russia are an important aspect of India’s foreign policy. Indo Russia relations are embedded in a history of trust and common interests and are matched by popular perceptions. 

  • Russia and India share a vision of a multipolar world order. 
  • More than 80 bilateral agreements have been signed between India and Russia as part of the Indo Russian Strategic Agreement of 2001.

🔹 India stands to benefit from its relationship with Russia on issues like Kashmir , energy supplies , sharing information on international terrorism , access to Central Asia and balancing its relations with China. 

  • Russia stands to benefit from this relationship because India is the second largest arms market for Russia. 
  • The Indian military gets most of its hardware from Russia. 
  • India is an oil importing Nation , Russia has repeatedly come to the assistance of India during its oil crisis. 
  • India is seeking to increase its energy imports from Russia.
  • Russia is important for India’s nuclear energy plants. 
  • Russia assisted India’s space industry by giving , for example the cryogenic rocket when India needed it.
  • Russia and India have collaborated on various scientific projects.

India – China Relation : –

🔹 After the Chinese revolution in 1949 , India was one of the first countries to recognise the communist government. The Panchsheel Agreement ( The Five Principles of Peaceful Co – existence ) signed by the Indian Prime Minister Nehru and the Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai on 29 April 1954. 

🔹 Indian and Chinese leaders visited each other’s country and were greeted by large and friendly crowds. The slogan of ‘ Hindi – Chini – Bhai – Bhai ‘ was popular. 

🔹 Diplomatic relations between the two countries downgraded until 1976. A series of talks to resolve the border issue were also initiated in 1981. 

🔹 Both States also signed agreements on cultural exchanges and cooperation in Science and Technology and opened four border posts for trade. Bilateral trade between India and China has increased from $ 338 million in 1992 to more than $ 70 billion in 2016.

Political visits India and China : –

🔹 Prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s visit to China in December 1988 provided the impetus for an improvement in India China relations.

🔹 In 1993 , the signing of an Agreement on the Maintenance of Peace and Tranquility along the Line of Actual Control ( LAC ) on the India – China Border Areas during Prime Minister Narasimha Rao’s visit reflected the growing stability and substance in bilateral ties.

🔹 During Prime Minister Atal Biltari Vajpayee’s visit in 2003 , India and China signed a Declaration on Principles for Relations and Comprehensive Cooperation and also mutually decided to appoint Special Representatives ( SRs ) to explore the framework of a boundary settlement from the political perspective. 

🔹 During the State Visit of Chinese President Mr. Xi Jinping visited India from 17 to 19 September 2014 , a total of 16 agreements were signed in various sectors including , commerce & trade , railways , space -cooperation , pharmaceuticals , audio – visual co – production , culture , establishment of industrial parks , sister – city agreements etc. Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited China from May 14-16 , 2015 .

🔹 President Pranab Mukherjee made a state visit to China from May 24 to 27 , 2016. 

🔹 In April 2018 Prime Minister Modi and President Xi held the first informal Summit in Wuhan to exchange views on overarching issues of bilateral and global importance.

🔹 The bilateral ties continued to strengthen and deepen in the year 2019 with the Second Informal Summit between Prime Minister Modi and President Xi held in Chennai on 11-12 October 2019.

🔹 The Kailash Manasarovar Yatra is organised. In 2019 , a total of 18 batches comprising 1005 Yatris through Lipulekh Pass and 10 batches comprising 341 Yatris through Nathu – La Pass undertook the Yatra.

Confilt between India and china : –

🔹 Both States were involved in differences arising from the Chinese takeover of Tibet in 1950 and the final settlement of the Sino- Indian border.

🔹 China and India were involved in a border conflict in 1962 over competing territorial claims Principally in Arunachal Pradesh and in the Aksal Chin region of Ladakh. 

Tibet issue : –

🔹 In 1950 , China took over control of Tibet. Large sections of the Tibetan population oppose this takeover. In 1958 , there was an armed uprising in Tibet against China occupation. This was suppressed by the Chinese forces . In 1959 , the Dalai Lama crossed over into the Indian border and sought Asylum which was granted . The Chinese government strongly protested against this.

The Chinese invasion , 1962 : –

🔹 The Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama , sought and obtained political asylum in India in 1959. China alleged that the government of India was allowing anti – China activities to take place from within India.

🔹 A little earlier , a boundary dispute had surfaced between India and China. India claimed that the boundary was a matter settled in colonial time , but China said that any colonial decision did not apply. 

🔹 China claimed two areas within the Indian territory : 

  • i ) Aksai – chin area in the Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir and 
  • ii ) much of the state of Arunachal Pradesh in what was then called NEFA ( North East Frontier Agency ).

🔹 Between 1957 and 1959 Chinese occupied the Aksai – chin area and built a strategic road there.

🔹 China launched a swift and massive invasion in October 1962 on both the disputed regions. China declared a unilateral ceasefire and it’s troops withdrew to where they were before the invasion began.

Effects of Indo – China War : –

  • China war dented India’s image at home and abroad. 
  • India had to approach the American and the British for military assistance. 
  • The USSR remained neutral during the conflict.
  • This war induced a sense of national humiliation and at the same time : strengthened a spirit of nationalism.
  • Some of the top Army commanders either resigned or were retired.
  • The then Defence Minister , V K Krishna Menon had to leave the cabinet. 
  • Nehru was severely criticized for his naive assessment of the Chinese intention and the lack of military preparedness. 
  • For the first time , a no – confidence motion against Nehru’s government was moved and debated in the Lok Sabha.

India’s Relations with Israel : – 

🔹 Israel gained independence from the British Colonial rule in 1948. Diplomatic relations formally developed between India and Israel after the opening of Israeli Embassy in India in 1992. India and Israel are strategic partners. The political ties between India and Israel are very warm and forward – looking.

🔹 Prime Minister Narendra Modi undertook a historic first – ever visit to Israel by an Indian Prime Minister on July 4-6 , 2017 , during which the relationship was upgraded to the strategic partnership. 

🔹 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a return visit to India on January 14-19 , 2018. The two Nations have cooperation in various fields like cultural exchange , security and defence , Counter Terrorism , space research , water and energy and agricultural development.

India’s Relations with Its Neighbours Countries : –

🔹 India’s relations with its neighbours depend upon developments in individual countries but also the broader trends which shape the region as a whole. India’s relationship with neighbouring countries are discussed below in detail.

India’s Relations with Pakistan : –

🔶 Kashmir conflict : –

🔹 The conflict started just after the partition over the dispute on Kashmir. The issue was then referred to the UNO. The Kashmir conflict did not prevent cooperation between the governments of India and Pakistan. Both the government work together to restore the women abducted during partition to their original families. 

🔶 Indus water treaty : –

🔹 The Indus water treaty was signed by Nehru and General Ayub Khan in 1960 with the meditation by the World Bank. In April 1965 , Pakistan launched armed attacks in the Rann of Kutch area of Gujarat.

🔶 Pakistan’s attack on India : –

🔹 This was followed by a bigger offense in Jammu and Kashmir in August and September. The Prime Minister Shastri ordered Indian troops to launch a counter offensive on the Punjab border. In a fierce battle , the Indian Army reached close to Lahore.

🔶 Tashkent agreement : –

🔹 The hostilities came to an end with the UN intervention . Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and Pakistan General Ayub Khan signed the Tashkent agreement , brokered by the Soviet Union in January 1966.

Bangladesh War , 1971 : –

🔹 Beginning in 1970 , Pakistan faced its biggest internal crisis. The country’s first general election produced a split verdict Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s party emerged as a winner in West Pakistan , while the Awami League led by Sheikh Mujib – ur- Rahman swept through East Pakistan. The Pakistani army arrested Sheikh Mujhe and unleashed a reign of terror on the people of East Pakistan.

🔹 In response to this , the Pupil started a struggle to liberate * Bangladesh * from Pakistan. Throughout 1971 , India had to bear the burden of about 80 lakh refugees who fled East Pakistan and took shelter in the neighbouring areas in India. 

🔹 Pakistan accused India of a conspiracy to break it up. Support for Pakistan came from the US and China. Henry Kissinger , advisor to the US President Richard Nixon , made a secret visit to China via Pakistan in July 1971. In order to counter the US- Pakistan- China axis , India signed a 20 year Treaty of Peace and Friendship with the Soviet Union in August 1971.

🔹 This Treaty assured India of Soviet support if the country faced any attack . A full scale war between India and Pakistan broke out in December 1971. Within 10 days the Indian Army had surrounded Dhaka from three sides and the Pakistani army of about 90000 had surrendered. With Bangladesh as a free country , India declared a unilateral ceasefire. Later , the signing of the Shimla Agreement between Indira Gandhi and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto on 3rd July 1972 formalised the return of peace between the two nations.

Kargil Confrontation : –

🔹 In 1999 several points on the Indian side of the LOC in the Mashkov , Kaksar and Batalik areas were occupied by Mujahideens , suspecting involvement of the Pakistani Army. This led to a confrontation between the two countries. This is known as the Kargil Conflict. By 26 July 1999 India had recovered control of most of the lost points / heights.

Effects of 1962 , 1965 and 1971 War : –

🔹 A decisive victory in the 1971 war led to national jubilation. After the 197 war , Assembly elections in most States took place , bringing large majorities to the Congress Party.

🔹 Conflicts with the neighbours derailed the five year plans. The resources were diverted to the defence sector especially after 1962. The Department of Defence Production was established in November 1962.

🔹 The Department of Defence Supplies was established in November 1965. The third Five year Plan ( 1961-66 ) was affected and it was followed by three annual plans. The fourth five year plan could be initiated only in 1969. India’s defence expenditure increased enormously after the Wars.

India – Nepal Relations : –

🔹 India is Nepal’s largest trading partners. India has provided transit facility to Nepal for the third country trade. Both public and private sectors of India have invested in Nepal. Nepal and India have common approach to regional and multilateral institutions.

India – Sri Lanka Relations : –

🔹 Trade between the two countries grew particularly rapidly after the entry into force of India . Sri Lanka Free Trade Agreement in March 2000.

🔹 Tourism also forms an important link between India and Sri Lanka and India is the largest source market for Sri Lankan tourism.

Note : – Kindly refers to these topics ( India Relations with Nepal and Sri – Lanka ) in chapter five Contemporary South Asia world.

Class 12 Political Science Contemporary South Asia Notes

India’s Relations with Myanmar : –

🔹 India and Myanmar signed a Treaty of Friendship in 1951. Myanmar is significant in the context of our ” Act East ” policy. Myanmar is India’s gateway to South – East Asia.

🔹 India has responded promptly and effectively in rendering assistance following natural calamities in Myanmar like Cyclone Mora ( 2017 ) , Komen ( 2015 ) , earthquake in Shan State ( 2010 ) , Cyclone Nargis in 2008 and the recent outbreak of influenza virus in Yangon in July – August 2017.

🔹 India has extended development assistance to Myanmar on generous terms. The bulk of the assistance is grant – funded. India is also providing assistance in setting up institutions for higher learning and research , namely Myanmar Institute of Information Technology , Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research and Education , Myanmar – India Centre for Enhancement of IT Skills.

🔹 India – Myanmar Industrial Training Centres. Myanmar is potentially an important partner in the energy sector as future offshore gas can be piped to India.

India’s Nuclear Program : –

🔹 A significant nuclear program was initiated in the late 1940’s under the guidance of Homi Jehangir Bhabha. India wanted to generate atomic energy for peaceful purposes. China conducted nuclear tests in October 1964. It was a wake up Call for India. The first nuclear explosion undertaken by India in May 1974 , it was termed as a peaceful explosion. India conducted a series of nuclear Tests in May 1998 demonstrating its capacity to use nuclear energy for military purposes.

India’s Nuclear Policy : –

🔹 India’s nuclear policy has always been peace oriented. India will keep nuclear weapons for its defence. Advocates ‘ no first use ‘ of nuclear weapons. But in view of contemporary regional security challenges , policy of ‘ no first use ‘ can he reviewed. India is committed to ensuring its membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group ( NSG ) and opposing partisan and unjust nuclear treaties like CTBT and NPT.

India refuse to sign NPT and CTBT : –

🔹 India has opposed the NPT and CTBT since they were selectively applicable to the non – nuclear powers and legitimised the monopoly of the five nuclear weapon powers. Thus , India opposed the indefinite extension of the NPT in 1995 and also refused to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty ( CTBT ).

Related Chapters

Challenges of nation building
Era of one party Dominance
Politics of Planned Development
India’s External Relations
Challenges to and restoration of the congress system
The Crisis of Democratic Order
Rise of Popular Movements ( Deleted )
Regional Aspirations
Recent Developments in Indian Politics

Legal Notice

This is copyrighted content of GRADUATE PANDA and meant for Students and individual use only. Mass distribution in any format is strictly prohibited. We are serving Legal Notices and asking for compensation to App, Website, Video, Google Drive, YouTube, Facebook, Telegram Channels etc distributing this content without our permission. If you find similar content anywhere else, mail us at We will take strict legal action against them.

All Classes Notes