A PUBLICATION OF THE RESEARCH CENTRE FOR EASTERN AND
NORTH EASTERN REGIONAL STUDIES, KOLKATA

A University Grants Commission Approved Journal
(under UGC-CARE, Arts & Humanities Citation Index)
ISSN 2582-2241

  • Latest Issue: Volume 4, Issue 2 (May 2020)
FIRST PAGES
NORTH EAST ADVISORY
The Vanity of Hope
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Abstract

Peace processes in India’s North East remain an unfinished business, and Covid-19 will delay matters

ASIAN ADVISORY
Vietnam Since 1975: Who Won the War?
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Abstract

Reflections on the Forty-Fifth Anniversary of the Fall of Saigon

RESEARCH ARTICLES
Undoing the Radcliffe Awards: Re-imagining Border Haats at India’s North East and Bangladesh

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Abstract

This article explores the varied nuances in the functioning of the border haats (rural local markets) located along the borders of Bangladesh and the two North Eastern states of India, Meghalaya and Tripura, by analyzing their inner workings, identifying their difficulties, and putting forward a case for establishing more such haats at the borders that other Indian states share with Bangladesh. It will, no doubt, foster the prospects of further improving bilateral relations between India and Bangladesh and provide a boost to the faltering regionalism in the South Asian region. At best, it would help region in the exorcizing the ghost of Radcliffe and his ill-fated awards.

Amity and Enmity within the Contemporary Southeast Asian Regional Complex
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Abstract

This article revises and updates Barry Buzan’s theory on the South East Asian Regional Complex or SEARC that he had framed to explain the bipolar Cold War world, by adapting it to the current behavior of states in a multipolar world amid increasing tensions with China, as well as the newly manifested construct of the ‘Indo-Pacific.’ It assesses the viability of Buzan’s theory in the context of the increasing importance of the Indo-Pacific region, and the critical role of Southeast Asian countries in regional geopolitics. It argues that the factors impacting the SEARC have evolved beyond politico-military variables, and the regional complex is designed to increase cooperation based on common agendas over outstanding political disputes. In pursuit of increasing cooperation, the complex has incorporated extra-regional powers into the region’s discourse in the context of the larger Indo-Pacific. The article identifies contemporary areas of amity and enmity in the region such as environmental degradation, economic integration in a hyper globalized environment, and the Chinese Belt and Road initiative. It argues that the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic has shown that many Southeast Asian countries have rallied to absolve China of responsibility in starting the crisis, highlighting the dependence of Southeast Asian states on the East Asian giant.

The Cambodian Experience of Demining after the Civil War – 3: Becoming Mine-Free by the 2025 Deadline
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Abstract

In the third and concluding part of his pathbreaking study of demining in Cambodia, Dr. Leng Sochea presents his findings using both qualitative and quantitative methods. The author makes a set of significant recommendations that are essential reading for government policymakers to ensure that the country not only meets its 2025 deadline to free the nation of the scourge of mines, but also to become self-reliant afterwards to remove any remaining mines. Donors should ensure that there is no duplication of existing initiatives. Where necessary, the national standards and approaches should be amended to make full use of non-technical and technical surveys, based on international standards. The authorities should look for new donors such as China, Russia, India, South Korea, and the ASEAN Regional Mine Action Centre to get more funding before 2025. The author advises the government to restructure the mine action framework and funding to fit into the new context.

Crossborder Interventions: Testing India’s Foreign Policy after Airstrikes on Pakistani Terror Camps
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Abstract

This article offers a qualitative assessment of the foreign policy dimensions of India’s airstrikes on Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camps located at Balakot in Pakistan by interrogating the perspectives of the United States, China and other states. As a rising power, India seeks to protect its interests and advance its influence in global affairs, however structural constraints in South Asia have always frustrated its greater ambitions. The Balakot airstrikes marked a tectonic shift in India’s traditional attitude of restraint in favor of a daring assault inside Pakistani territory in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack, demonstrating its willingness to escalate a crisis with Pakistan. The article argues that it is vital that India acquires more hard power competencies if it wishes to play a wider and more influential role internationally.

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