The ‘Trump Doctrine’ for West Asia: Implications for India



23.08.2017 09:38:04 – Session on

The ‘Trump Doctrine’ for West Asia: Implications for India 

( – Friday, September 1, 2017


5:00 PM – 7:00 PM (Registration: 04:30 PM )

WWF Auditorium, Lodhi Estate, New Delhi

SPEAKERS Ambassador Talmiz Ahmad, Adviser, West Asia & North Africa, Ananta Centre and Former Ambassador of India to Saudi Arabia, Oman & UAE
Ambassador Ranjit Gupta, Former Ambassador of India to Yemen and Oman
Dr Meena Singh 

Roy, Research Fellow, Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, IDSA
Ambassador Sanjay Singh, Former Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India
MODERATOR Ms Indrani Bagchi, Diplomatic Editor, The Times of India


The US administration led by President Donald Trump has expressed its interest to support the “Sunni Alliance” led by Saudi Arabia. The present Qatar blockade is the first clear fallout. The seminar will focus on the implications of the policy of the United States for India and the West Asian region.

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Talmiz Ahmad 24-11-16
Ambassador Talmiz Ahmad, Adviser, West Asia & North Africa, Ananta Centre and Former Ambassador of India to Saudi Arabia, Oman & UAE

Talmiz Ahmad joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1974. Early in his career, he was posted in a number of West Asian countries such as Kuwait, Iraq and Yemen and later, between 1987 and 1990, he was Consul General in Jeddah. He also held positions in the Indian missions in New York, London and Pretoria. He served as Indian Ambassador to Saudi Arabia (2000-03; 2010-11); Oman (2003-04), and the UAE (2007-10). He was also Additional Secretary for International Cooperation in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas in 2004-06. In July 2011, the Saudi Government conferred on him the King Abdul Aziz Medal First Class for his contribution to the promotion of Indo – Saudi relations.
After retirement from the Foreign Service in 2011, he worked in the corporate sector for three years.He is now an independent consultant based in Dubai and advises Indian and local companies on business expansion and diversification. He has published three books: Reform in the Arab World: External Influences and Regional Debates (2005), Children of Abraham at War: the Clash of Messianic Militarisms (2010) and The Islamist Challenge in West Asia: Doctrinal and Political Competitions after the Arab Spring (2013). He writes and lectures frequently on Political Islam, the politics of West Asia and energy security issues.

Ranjit Gupta 24-11-16
Ambassador Ranjit Gupta, Former Ambassador of India to Yemen and Oman

Ranjit Gupta is a retired Indian Foreign Service officer. He was a member of the Prime Minister’s National Security Advisory Board for the term 2009-2010. He is currently Adjunct Faculty in the International Strategic and Security Studies Programme at the National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bengaluru; a Distinguished Fellow of the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies and a Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Chinese Studies.
Earlier he has been Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Defence Studies and Analyses; Visiting Professor at the Academy of Third World Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia; and Ambassador-in-Residence at the Jawaharlal Nehru University.
He has been delivering lectures at think tanks, universities and other academic institutions in India and abroad and participating in conferences, seminars and workshops in India and abroad relating to India’s relations with West Asia and, in particular, the Gulf region thereof; Southeast Asia and East Asia with emphasis on Asean, China, Myanmar, Taiwan, Tibet and India’s ‘Look East’ Policy. Sponsored by MEA, he led an Indian team for a series of interactions with Gulf academics in Dubai, New Delhi and Riyadh, on India GCC Relations, 2008-2010. Funded by MEA, he participated in three Workshops at the annual Gulf Research Meeting at the University of Cambridge – in 2012 and 2013 as Workshop Co Director and in 2014 as a participant advocating an Asian role in the future security architecture of the Gulf Region. Chaired MEA Task Force in 2011 and 2014 on the Arab Spring and its Implications for India: Policy Recommendations. He has co-edited three books – India and the Gulf: What Next? Gulf Research Centre Cambridge, 2013; GCC – INDIA Relations: Gulf Research Foundation, Geneva, 2013; A New Gulf Security Architecture. Prospects and Challenges for an Asian Role – Gerlach Press, Berlin & London: 2014. During his first posting in Cairo, though only a Third Secretary probationer, he was hand picked by the National Liberation Front of South Yemen to be their Advisor for their Independence Talks with the British in Geneva in November 1967; when the entire world believed that the Royalists would succeed in overthrowing the Republican regime in Yemen in 1967/68 he persuaded his influential Ambassador Apasahab Pant that the Republican regime will not fall and consequently in January 1968 he was deputed to Sana’a as Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to express India’s support for the beseiged Republican regime in Yemen. During his 39 year career with India’s Ministry of External Affairs he had served successively in Cairo, New York (at the Permanent Mission of India to the UN), Gangtok (at the time of Sikkim’s merger with India), Jeddah (Deputy Chief of Mission), Frankfurt (Consul-General) and Kathmandu (Deputy Chief of Mission). He was the first desk Officer dealing with Bangladesh in MEA from Feb 1972 to May 1974. Another of his postings at Headquarters had been as the last Head of the undivided West Asia and North Africa Division dealing with Arab countries and Israel. Later he was successively India’s Ambassador to Yemen (North), Venezuela (concurrently Consul General in the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba), Oman, Thailand (also Permanent Representative to ESCAP) and Spain (concurrently Ambassador to the Principality of Andorra) and finally was Head of India’s Representation in Taiwan from May 2000 to May 2003.

meena (2)
Dr Meena Singh Roy, Research Fellow, Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, IDSA

Dr. Meena Singh Roy is a Research Fellow and Coordinator West Asia Centre at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses. Her area of specialisation is West Asia and Central Asia. She completed her Ph.D. from University of Delhi in 1994. She has been senior research scholar in the Department of African Studies, Delhi University. She has also been associated with Institute of Commonwealth Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies and London School of Economics for her research work. Has been a visiting Research Fellow with German Institute of Global and Area Studies Institute of Asian Studies (GIGA). She has presented papers in various national and international seminars and has published various research papers and articles in referred Journals and Books.
She has been involved in net assessment reports on Central Asia. She has published a books titled, International and Regional Security Dynamics: Indian and Iranian Perspectives (ed.), July 2009, Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi; Emerging Trends in West Asia: Regional and Global Implications (ed.), Pentagon Press, 2014 and a monograph titled “The Shanghai Cooperation Organization: India Seeking New Role in the Eurasian Regional Mechanism”, 2014, IDSA Publication. Has completed the joint Delhi Policy Group and the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses Task Force report on West Asia in Transition. Her Forthcoming book is titled Linking South and Central Asia in the New Strategic Environment: Envisioning India’s Future Partnership with the Eurasian Region.

She is currently working on India-Iran Relations in the 21st Century: Adapting to New Realities in the West Asian Region. She is also a member of Professional Institutes and Societies; Indian Council of World Affairs, New Delhi; Central Eurasian Studies Society, United States; Member of the Advisory Board of Centre for Russian and Central Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi; Member of Board of Studies in Defence and Strategic Studies, Punjab University, Chandigarh; Member of the International Editorial Board of the Central Asian Affairs, Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands.

Sanjay Singh 24-11-16
Ambassador Sanjay Singh, Former Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India

Sanjay Singh is an alumnus of Delhi University, from where he obtained a Masters in Physics. He joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1976 and served in Indian Missions in Mexico, Germany, Ghana and France and in the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi. He was Director in the Office of the External Affairs Minister and Joint Secretary and Head of Division dealing with Latin American Countries. From October 1997 to June 2001, he was India’s Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City and from July 2001 to August 2004, Deputy Chief of Mission in Paris. He held charge in the Ministry as Joint Secretary and Additional Secretary (Gulf) from March 2005 to March 2009. He was India’s Ambassador to Iran from March 2009 to March 2011. He took over as Secretary (East) in the Ministry of External Affairs in March 2011 and retired in end April 2013.

INDRANI BAGCHI 11-05-16 Ms Indrani Bagchi, Diplomatic Editor, The Times of India

Indrani Bagchi is senior diplomatic editor with The Times of India, where she has been reporting and analyzing foreign policy issues for the newspaper since 2004. Indrani covers daily news on foreign affairs in the foreign office, as well as interpreting and analyzing global trends with an Indian perspective. She writes news stories; opinion articles; news features and a blog, “Globespotting”. She covers Indian foreign and security policy, terrorism, nuclear weapons, and national security issues, among others. Earlier, Indrani worked as associate editor for India Today, a premier news magazine. Indrani started her journalism career at The Statesman, where she was the weekend editor, before moving to The Economic Times in Calcutta to edit the Metro Magazine.
Having graduated from Loreto College, Calcutta University with English honours, Indrani has been a Reuters Fellow at Oxford University. In 2010, India was awarded the Chang Lin-Tien fellowship by the Asia Foundation to study US-China relations at Brookings Institution, Washington DC. She tweets @horror06 and @IBagchiTOI.

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