• How will the return of the Congress Party affect Indian Foreign and Security Policy?

      Kundu, Apurba (EIAS Policy Brief, 2004)
      The 2004 Indian general elections stunned observers when, contrary to expectations, the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) coalition government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Prime Minister Atul Behari Vajpayee was defeated by an electoral coalition led by the Indian National Congress (INC) headed by Sonia Gandhi. A further surprise came when Gandhi declined to become India's first foreign-born prime minister, opting instead to back party stalwart Dr Manmohan Singh for this office. Dr Singh, India's first Sikh prime minister, now heads a United Progressive Alliance (UPA) coalition government headed by a cabinet containing 19 INC members and 10 members of smaller parties. Will the return to power of the INC after eight years in opposition (during three years of Left Front then five years of BJP/NDA rule) result in a shift of India's foreign and national security policies?