After 9/11, US reshaped its policy to achieve its goals and started working towards improving their economic, political, military ties with India and also started developing strategic partnership with India. The post 9/11 relationship between India and the United States is way different from their relationship in the post-cold war period. The United States changed its techniques, means and methods in order to advance its policy goals in India.
In 2004, India and the United States conceived the Next Steps in Strategic Partnership(NSSP) and this laid the foundations for their cooperation in civilian nuclear activities, civilian space programmes and high- trade technology and also expanded their dialogue on missile defence. In March 2005, Condaleezza Rice visited India and she revealed the eagerness of US to cooperate with India in the area of civil nuclear energy.Soon after her visit, India and the United States started negotiations for cooperation and they declared the most wide ranging partnership which has never happened in the past. The areas of their partnership includes energy security, economy, defence cooperation and democracy promotion. The strategic partnership between India and USA was not a sudden development but it is a result of a gradual convergence of interests between India and the United States after the cold war. The new nuclear cooperation policy between the two countries served as an important confidence-building measure and assured that both a countries had a common interest in giving a safe and reliable nuclear energy.
In 2006, Indo-US Nuclear Separation Agreement was signed which was an agreement on the complex issue of nuclear separation by India. This agreement was to pave the way for the recognition of India as an N-power. This agreement showed the new maturity of Indo-US long strategic partnership.
INDIA AND US STAND ON NPT-CTBT
The Non-Proliferation Treaty is an international treaty which aims to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and to promote cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear energy between countries. The United States has shared its nuclear policies with various different countries which are designed to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons. On the other hand, India have never signed the NPT. India has pledged not to use the nuclear weapons unless they are attack by the other countries with nuclear weapons. India have never signed the NPT because the NPT which was signed in 1970 was restricted to only the global nuclear superpowers and India was not included since it is among the Third World Countries and did not have the capacity to possessed nuclear weapons. Because of this, India considers the NPT as a discriminatory treaty and even today India still refuses to sign the NPT because they feel if they sign it, they will lose their nuclear capability and may cause considerable decline in political, military and economic aspects. The other non-signatories of NPT argues that nuclear weapon is a division between the haves and the have-nots.
Since the early 1950s, many countries adopted the banning of all nuclear tests and are going on till now. But many explosions came into existence and many countries including India signed to ban all nuclear test explosions all over the world but with outbreak of Cold War, countries stop bothering about the agreement. The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty(CTBT) was opened for signature in 1996. It is a treaty to stop all the nuclear tests in other countries. The United States being the sole major power in the international politics, was among the first country to sign the CTBT but they have not yet ratify it. While, India is among the countries who still have not signed the CTBT. India remains a de-facto observance of the spirit of the treaty. The CTBT has been a major ongoing debate between various countries.
The United States reacted strongly against India’s decision against the signing of NPT and CTBT and the US also reacted upon India’s opposition to the US-sponsored concept of creating a nuclear weapons free zone in South Asia which continued to keep limited the scope of Indo-US cooperation. The United States supply their arms to Pakistan which act as a negative factor for India. The US policy of putting pressure on Russia for checking the supply of Cryogenic engine technology and sale of two Russian nuclear reactors to India also acted as a hindering factors. India opposed the protectionism being practised by the USA.