Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the first ever in-person Quad summit hosted by US President Joe Biden today. The other participants are Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.The summit will be held at the White House in Washington.
Defence expert Ajai Shukla explained the significance of the summit and outlined India's expectations going in. He also briefed us on the impact of the new trilateral security alliance, AUKUS. Here are the excerpts:
What is the significance of the first in-person quad summit?
- Quad brings together the US, India, Japan and Australia
- Objective: Resolving issues in Asia-Pacific, mainly concerning Chinese aggression
- China views this as an anti-China grouping
- The leaders will exchange views on global issues like emerging technologies, infra, cyber security, maritime security, humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, climate change and education
What are India's expectations from this particular summit and what does it hope to achieve?
- No deliverables involved this time
- It maintains the pressure on China
- Also provides political framework for the Malabar exercise
What function does the AUKUS serve? Is it going to be more effective? Is there something new here?
- AUKUS does not have any participation from India
- It is a new, purpose-built alliance between the US, UK and Australia
- Geographical centre of gravity: Western Pacific
- The three countries also plan to share intelligence, quantum technology and cruise missile technology
- For now, India will watch AUKUS from the sidelines
Hopefully, India-China relations will move on a positive trajectory going forward and both sides will be able to manage their differences without further conflict.