As India expands its maritime capabilities, new questions have arisen as to whether it has a coherent maritime strategy or the institutional foundations necessary to secure India’s equities, particularly in an increasingly contested Indian Ocean region. Ambassador Yogendra Kumar, Indian diplomat and author of the new book Diplomatic Dimension of Maritime Challenges for India in the 21st Century, discussed these themes at a private event hosted by Carnegie’s Milan Vaishnav. Iskander Rehman, postdoctoral fellow at the Brookings Institution and author of Murky Waters: Naval Nuclear Dynamics in the Indian Ocean, served as discussant.
Ambassador Yogendra Kumar retired from diplomatic service in 2012 in the rank of secretary to the government of India. He was previously ambassador to the Philippines, high commissioner in Namibia, and ambassador to Tajikistan. He also served as Additional Secretary, Multilateral Economic Relations, at the Ministry of External Affairs and as the Senior Directing Staff at the National Defence College in New Delhi.
Iskander Rehman is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Project for International Order and Strategy (IOS), at the Brookings Institution. Prior to joining Brookings, Iskander was a Research Fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA), where he focused on U.S. grand strategy, Asian defense issues, and emerging security challenges in the Indo-Pacific.
Milan Vaishnav is an associate in the South Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. His primary research focus is the political economy of India, and he examines issues such as corruption and governance, state capacity, distributive politics, and electoral behavior.