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India not in favour of change of guard in Myanmar
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 9
India is not in favour of regime change in Myanmar and is in constant touch with both the parties --the military junta led by Senior General Than Shwe as well as the pivotal Opposition figure Aung San Suu Kyi.

India is also against the imposition of sanctions on Myanmar as it is of the view that sanctions serve no purpose on regimes like that in Myanmar which know how to live with sanctions and the only sufferers of the sanctions are the people.

New Delhi’s ties with Myanmar are getting deeper and richer by the day and have already acquired strategic dimensions. Far from distancing itself from the military junta, New Delhi is stepping up its involvement with Myanmar in coming weeks when it will finalise the Kaladan project with Myanmar.

Kaladan project is the centre-piece of the diplomatic and strategic edifice that India is busy building with Myanmar over the past few years. Kaladan is an important trans-border infrastructure project that will let the land-locked North-Eastern states gain easy access to the Bay of Bengal through Myanmar. It envisages a multi-modal transport corridor and building of a pipeline that will bring natural gas from Myanmar into the North-East. The economic, security and geopolitical stakes for India are so high in Myanmar that it is prepared to overlook the growing Western criticism of its engagement with Yangon.

India favours that the Myanmar regime holds a broader dialogue with the Opposition. A good sign in the evolving political situation in Myanmar is that Suu Kyi is willing to talk to the generals and the generals too, in their own way, are ready to talk to her.

There are signals that a broader dialogue process aimed at national reconciliation in Myanmar will start sooner rather than later.

While India awaits the start of the all-inclusive political process in Myanmar, it is in close contact with the generals as a foreign policy imperative.

The good sign is that the Myanmarese military junta is cosying up to the idea of having some form of national reconciliation and has signed separate agreements with 17 of its 18 ethnic groups.

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