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Essay on “Can India Become a Superpower?” Complete Essay for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Can India Become a Superpower?

Every day, countless commentators prophesy the ascendance of the world’s next superpowers, India and China, the two “Asian giants” shaking of their ancient slumber and rising, to the calf of the 21st century.                                                                             

— Yale Global 

What makes a country a superpower? Well, if we reflect on this word in a broader sense, we would realize that a superpower would be a State which has the ability to influence events and project power worldwide. While deliberating further on the question posed, there is hope that the day when India would be a superpower is not far. India has immense potential to develop as a global major. India has the potential to economically catch up with its large neighbour.

For a while, let us ponder over the three decisive questions: what are the qualities and attributes which a State should have to become a superpower? What are the assets and liabilities which characterize India within the framework of the criteria for being a superpower? What are the possibilities of India becoming a superpower?

As can be discerned from contemporary events, the characteristics of superpowers are: firstly, the State or the nation concerned should have sizeable presence .in terms of area and population. Secondly, the State should have high levels of domestic cohesion, a clear sense of national identity and stable administration based on strong legal and institutional arrangements. Thirdly, the State concerned should be economically strong and endowed with natural resources particularly energy resources, minerals and metals.

Such a State should have a strong industrial base backed by technological knowledge. The Slate should also have strong military capabilities, particularly nuclear and missile capabilities at least comparable to, if not of higher levels, those of other countries. The combination of all these ingredients and attributes of the State should be at far higher levels than those of the majority of Stales in the international community. It is only then that the State can acquire the status of a superpower and be acknowledged as such.

In this context, if we examine India’s position then we may say that India’s quest for an influential status in world affairs in many ways had nothing to do with the substantive criteria described above. Its assertions regarding its influence were based on a perception that it was uniquely positioned to influence the world order because its foreign policy was based on idealism and rooted in high moral principles. India’s civilisationaI background and size were supposed to ensure for it an influential voice in international affairs. But this certainly was not a realistic claim. A look at the statistical data reveals that nearly 47 per cent of Indian children are either malnourished or stunted. The literacy rate is about 74.4 per cent still far below from developed countries.

In India, people are deemed literate if they can do little more than sign their name. About 10 per cent of the entire Indian labour force works in the formal sector of which less than half is in the private sector. It is really shocking to note that about a half of the world’s starved inhabitants live in India. While India is a democracy with relevant institutional arrangements and experience stretching over half a century, the fact of the matter is that Indian democracy is still plagued by numerous lacunae.

The standards of governance in Indian polity leave much to be desired. There is a perceptible lack of internal cohesion and unity in Indian civil society. This is not denying a general sense of national identity, which Indians have. In reality, however, India is subjected to centrifugal forces originating from caste, religious, ethnic, linguistic and regional differences. While we boast of our economic development and attendant technological capacities, the downside is that our infrastructure is not developed.

We are still dependent on foreign countries for energy defence supplies and for certain categories of high technology. India’s internal, social and economic problems limit India’s capacity to project its power abroad in a meaningful manner. Above all, we lack the cohesion, discipline and decisive political will to consolidate our strength projecting them externally. In the sixty-fourth year of India’s Independence, it is indeed heart-rending to see that we still do not have sufficient hospitals, roads, educational institutes, etc. that can cater to the needs of every Indian citizen.

But, we should not get bogged down in this quagmire of darkness, and our modest intention should be to become a developed country. The potential is so great that we can aspire to see that in another fifty years from now, India will be transformed into a superpower. And statistics cannot alone negate the fact that India has the capability to develop into a superpower. India’s competitive advantage lies in its good geo-strategic location. Secondly, it has trained human resources with technological capacities of a high order. Thirdly, India has the fourth largest military in the world and is now a nuclear power. It is among the seven or eight countries which have confirmed capacities in nuclear technology, space technology and in other crucial areas such as robotics and information technology. Fourthly, it is among the first 15 economic powers of the world. From all these facts, we can draw the conclusion that India is well on the way to becoming a superpower.

However, mere potential will not make India one of the most important powers of the world. A deliberate and conscious effort should be made by India’s civil society to improve governance and administration to world class standards. An intellectual and emotional sense of a composite Indian identity has to be consolidated. Furthermore policies need to be formulated and implemented to consolidate India’s well-being in all its dimensions—health, education, roads and communications, productivity, food and energy security and so on India should be able to sustain an annual rate of growth between 8 to 9 per cent in the coming two decades. Simultaneously, it should also focus on fashioning a stable pattern of relations, particularly with its neighbours so that an atmosphere of peace and security is established, and its economy is boosted. In the global arena, India should establish firm’ relations with major power centers of the world, especially the USA, Western Europe, Russia and China in order to ensure that these countries do not view India with apprehension. It is necessary that these important powers do not generate forces countering India’s capacities and policies to emerge as a major influence in world politics. India should develop its strength and capacities to match those of China, France and the United Kingdom to become a member of the superpower club.

The domestic requirements for a superpower status have to be met through democratic means, which is clearly a difficult task, given the cross-currents of competing interests and dissent which are endemic in a pluralistic nation like India. Similarly, the external dimensions of moving towards superpower status would be subject to pressures which would be generated by countries in India’s extended neighbourhood and even by existing global majors. The solution here is to persistently cultivate a harmonious relationship with the neighbouring countries and to strengthen the relationship with countries like the USA and Russia so that they are reassured that India will function in cooperation with them and help establish a stable international order.

There is no doubt that these suggestions seem imaginative and certain impracticalities might flow therein. But that should not deter us. Here, I would like to echo the voice of the Hon’ble President of India, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, “A nation’s progress depends upon how its people think.’ We Indians have to think as a nation and dream to transform our country into a superpower. We must have the faith to realize this dream.


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