India has a generally good relationship with other countries and military forces across the globe. There have, however, been some disputes and wars over the years. Several wars have been fought with Pakistan over Kashmir, Kargil and the Siachen Glacier. The war between this country that took place in 1971 resulted in the creation of Bangladesh, which had, until then, been known as East Pakistan.

India has been independent since 1947 and has used its struggles and victories in assisting other lands with gaining the same standing. Since mid-way through the 20th Century, India has been actively involved in getting European colonies in Africa and Asia to pursue an independent course and explore opportunities of self-rule.

India is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations and was one of the founders of the Non-Aligned Movement. It was also involved with the Peace Keeping Force (Sri Lanka) and Operation Cactus (the Maldives). As a key role player for the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), India has had major influences over the peace-keeping initiatives of the United Nations. To date, India has made over 55 000 personnel available from the military and police forces. These people have served in approximately 35 operations and four
Image of marching soliders
Soldiers of the Indian Army on parade during preparations for the
Republic Day Parade in New Delhi
continents in their efforts to maintain peace in behalf of the United Nations.

Interestingly, India is one of the few countries to refuse to sign the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). The CTBT has been designed to forbid by law any sort of nuclear explosion in any context, whether for military, private or commercial purposes. Although the United Nations had adopted this treaty in 1996, it is not yet in force. The NPT’s aim is to control and limit the spread of nuclear weapons. This treaty has been enforced since 1970 and has 189 states that have signed it, including Russia, the United States of America, the United Kingdom, France and China.

India still has one of the most sizeable and effective military forces in the world. It is primarily made up of the Indian Army, Air Force and Navy. Then, there are supporting bodies, such as the Coast Guard and Paramilitary Force, amongst others, that act to reinforce the military powers in cooperation with India and the United Nations. India works closely with France, Israel and Russia, who are the main suppliers of its weapons. Its ties with Russia are also connected to technological and economic support systems. However, India has succeeding in producing its own weapons and other military equipment in order to reduce its need to rely on other countries. This development of arms is managed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). In 2008, India became the world’s sixth nuclear power.

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