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Neighbours first

LiveMint logoLiveMint 06-06-2014 Livemint

It was clear from Day 1 that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would pay special attention to South Asia. News reports suggest that Bhutan will be the first country Modi will visit as head of government.

There is no doubt that India needs to keep sound relations with great powers such as the US and Russia. But for any country, what matters from a security perspective are relations with its neighbours. And in recent years, little attention has been paid to our neighbouring countries, foreign policy-wise, that is.

Bhutan holds special importance for India, but is ignored by Indian leaders far too often. It should not be. It is one neighbour that does not want anything other than good ties with India. It has no claims over our resources or territory. Its close proximity to China and its strategic location are additional factors why we should build far stronger ties with Thimpu.

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