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Basic Tenets of India’s Foreign Policy (1947-1961)

India emerged as an independent nation on 15th August 1947 and it was an epoch making phenomena for millions of Indian citizens. The Indian government adopted a well thought out and well planned foreign policy after assuming political powers in India.

The basic tenets of India’s foreign policy had been influenced by socio-cultural, economic and political conditions of India and the world. It reflected the rich Indian cultural values and the urges and aspirations of Indian citizens. The policy was based upon the principle of mutual co-existence.

India believes in respecting the identity of other nations and had always been active to preserve her own identity.

Indian Foreign Policy is also characterized by firm belief in the efficacy of peaceful methods to resolve the mutual international differences. India had never supported militarism and never used it as an instrument of foreign policy.

India believes in the principle of equality of nations and had always been against the discrimination among the nations on the basis of geographical size, economic strength and military power.

The spirit of internationalism also characterized the foreign policy. Indian leadership had always believed in the efficacy of closer international cooperation among the nations to ensure the mutual progress.

Non –alignment with any of the power blocks was another important feature of the foreign policy after independence. At the time of Indian independence cold war had already begun within the communist bloc led by Soviet Union and Capitalist bloc by USA.Indian leadership decided to stay away from bloc policies and pursued the politics of non-alignment. India was the founding member of NAM started in 1961.

Indian foreign policy was secular and ideologically neutral.India had never allowed its foreign policy to be dominated by either the capitalist or the communist ideology. India had maintained close cooperation with both the capitalist and communist nations.

Maintaining an independent opinion on international issues had been another important feature of the Foreign policy. India had always cherished her independence and had never allowed its foreign policy to be influenced by either pressure or inducements offered by the powerful nations of the world.

Non-interference in the internal matters of other nations had been basic tenet of Indian Foreign policy ever since India’s independence.