Rajiv Bhatia

Rajiv Bhatia

Distinguished Fellow, Foreign Policy Studies Programme

Ambassador Rajiv Bhatia is Distinguished Fellow, Foreign Studies Programme at Gateway House. He is a member of CII’s International Advisory Council, Trade Policy Council and Africa Committee. He is the Chair of FICCI’s Task Force on Blue Economy, and served as Chair of Core Group of Experts on BIMSTEC. He is a founding member of the Kalinga International Foundation and a member of the governing council of Asian Confluence.  As Director General of the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) from 2012-15, he played a key role in strengthening India's Track-II research and outreach activities. During a 37-year innings in the Indian Foreign Service (IFS), he served as Ambassador to Myanmar and Mexico and as High Commissioner to Kenya, South Africa and Lesotho. He dealt with a part of South Asia, while posted as Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs. A prolific columnist, he is also regular speaker on foreign policy and diplomacy in India and abroad. He was Senior Visiting Research Fellow during 2011-13 at the Institute of South East Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore. He holds a master’s degree in political science from Allahabad University.  His first book India in Global Affairs: Perspectives from Sapru House (KW Publishers, 2015) presented a sober and insightful view of India’s contemporary foreign policy. His second book,  India-Myanmar Relations: Changing contours(Routledge 2016) received critical acclaim. His third book, India-Africa Relations: Changing Horizons (Routledge 2022) has also been receiving positive reviews.  
Expertise

Foreign Policy, Quad & Indo-Pacific, South & South-East Asia, Africa, Blue Economy

Last modified: January 26, 2023

Recent projects

global south summit Courtesy: Twitter/@DrSJaishankar
19 January 2023 Hindustan Times

Voice of Global South Summit@G20

The recent Voice of the Global South Summit in New Delhi attracted 125 developing countries, and some tangible outcomes for India to carry to its G20 presidency agenda. It showed India's equity to be intact, despite a perception that in the past decade, India has moved away from NAM and closer to the developed West.
Global South Map Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
12 January 2023 The Hindu

Focus on Africa, heart of the Global South

India is currently hosting the Voice of Global South Summit, in which over 120 countries will participate. This is the time, as G20 chair, for India to articulate the concerns of the Global South. To truly represent the South, India must understand the moods and changes in Africa, especially in its external partnerships
india FP Courtesy: Reuters
5 January 2023 Gateway House

2023, the year of diplomacy extraordinaire?

2023 brings responsibility and opportunity for India. As the host of the G20 and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the world will be watching closely. With this authority, comes challenges encapsulated by five C’s: Covid, Contraction, Climate crisis, Conflict and China. If India is able to use its opportunity, the year could end with India viewed as a near-great power, an international bridge-builder, and a successful democracy.
look east policy final Courtesy: iStock
8 December 2022 The Hindu

Connecting India’s East with the Indo-Pacific

India is geopolitically committed to a ‘free, open, inclusive, peaceful and prosperous’ Indo-Pacific. But unless these five adjectives are viewed and acted on with seriousness, via the country’s North East both developmentally and culturally, the country will be unable to take advantage of its regional proximity to the Indo-Pacific.
joko modi final Courtesy: Twitter @narendramodi
24 November 2022 The Indian Express

Bringing the G20 baton to Delhi from Bali

India has not invested much in multilateral rule-making institutions like the G20, but it is never too late to start. India is ahead in some aspects, particularly technology with digital public goods and its governance. But it will certainly need help and expertise.
Indian Flags G20 Courtesy: Shutterstock
17 November 2022 Hindustan Times

Dialogue and diplomacy for peace

Despite the current tense global atmosphere, India and its foreign policy have remained true to its core of peace and security for all and equity and justice for the developing world. Throughout history, dialogue and diplomacy has been supported as a solution to dispute. Now, as G20 President, New Delhi can sow these seeds of peace in an increasingly multipolar world.