Opinion

All is not well in Indo-Iranian relations.

While Trump tries to enforce his sanctions on Iran, the old Indo-Iranian friendship is under huge pressure.
In last two days Iran has criticised India for not fulfilling its promise of making further investments in Chabahar port and that Indian plans to diversify its oil supply may result in loose its status as a special friend.
Even since IC 814 hijacking and rejig of Indian foreign policy in Afghanistan, India has seen Iran as its gateway to Central Asia. China’s Belt and Road initiative through Pakistan is already presenting India with a strategic challenge that only Iran could help.

Then there is more to the Iran when it calls for Indian strategic depth. The deep shadow of Saudi’s in Pakistan calls for far more Indian involvement in Iran. India’s efforts to balance its own ties with the Saudi Kingdom should be handled in the same way India balanced Israeli ties along with the relationship with Tehran.
As for the American pressure, India can make most of the opportunity. The US’s alienation of its own friends and business partners is already creating a big void in world economy. For the 7th largest economy that is growing at the fastest pace among its peer, the worst-case scenario of US withdrawal is only matched by opportunities that we can open to British or the German. And unlike the US business interests, the Europeans talk much better trade relations.

More than anything this is the time to nurture age old relationships and forge new ones. Under no circumstance India can be myopic to four year tenure of a US president and believe in order and not in chaos.

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