Peace, Development and Community The Look East Imagination of India with Special Reference to Northeast India

Dr. Imankalyan Lahiri

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This book is the outcome of the Project entitled, “Peace, Development and Community: The Look East Imagination of India with Special Reference to Northeast India,” supported by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies (MAKAIAS), Kolkata. The book throws light on the objectives of the development of India’s Look East Policy and its transformation during the last twenty-five years. The book clearly identifies the trends in the Look East Imagination of India, particularly the transformation of the Look East Policy into the Act East Policy. The Act East policy has acquired great relevance in the global geostrategic space. Indubitably, it is a pillar of India’s foreign policy, competing with our South Asia policy and our policy towards the USA, Russia, China, Japan, the European Union and other Emerging Economies, giving India the necessary space to play its legitimate role as an emerging great power. It is also important to identify that, along with physical connectivity, it is important to encourage mobility of people in the Northeastern Region of India for the proper implementation of India’s Act East Policy. In other words, the Look East Imagination of India requires a holistic and cross-sectoral plan of action, which brings into consideration the requirements of physical and soft infrastructure, strengthening connectivity, building entrepreneurial skills, and enhancing socio-ethnic ties. This multi-sectoral agenda requires the participation of several stakeholders, most notably the Northeastern States, the private sector and, most importantly, the people of the Northeastern Region. These subjects have been clearly dealt with in this book.

Dr. Imankalyan Lahiri

Dr. Imankalyan Lahiri teaches in the Department of International Relations, Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India. His areas of Specialisation are Southeast Asia, Asia-Pacific, Northeast India, non-traditional security issues, Political Economy, New Media and Human Rights. He has received several national and International awards. He has authored and edited several books namely, Mahathir’s Islam: A Socio-Political Construal, Malaysia’s Foreign Policy under Mahathir bin Mohammad, The Challenge of Terrorism (edited volume), India’s Constructive Engagement in Asia and Around (edited volume), Rabindranath Tagore: The Mythical Founder of a Universal Culture (edited volume). He was nominated under US Department of State Summer Institute Programme at the Walker Institute for Area and International Studies, University of South Carolina. He is General Secretary of The Jadavpur Association of International Relations. He is also the Executive Editor of the ICSSR supported journal, JAIR Journal of International Relations, and a regular contributor to different journals and newspapers. He has presented papers in numerous national and International conferences in India and abroad. He is also a regular participant on TV and Radio Programmes on International Affairs.

Contents Preface


1. Look East Policy and Northeast India: Prospects and Challenges
2. From “Look East” to “Act East”: A Critical Analysis of India’s Look East Policy
3. Myanmar: India’s Gateway to Southeast Asia—A Case Study of Moreh-Tamu Border Trade: Transforming Connectivity?
4. Tourism and Northeast India: Enhancing Connectivity and Regional Integration Process
5 Conclusion