Securing Indian Interests by Training Africa’s Military Leadership

Published date01 January 2015
Date01 January 2015
Subject MatterArticles
Securing Indian Interests
by Training Africa’s
Military Leadership
R. A. Maslekar1
Commerce between India and Africa will be of Ideas and Services, not of manufactured
goods against raw materials after the fashion of Western exploiters.
—Mahatma Gandhi
Africa has vast reserves of natural resources, and it is a huge market for goods
and services. The 54 African countries can have significant influence in various
international forums. As such these have to be engaged by India in all possible
dimensions and capacities to enhance bilateral relations and secure its interests.
The soft power of military training is one such capacity that could be lever-
aged effectively by India. African continent has been witness to highest military
professionalism, valour and sacrifice by Indian troops during various battles and
peacekeeping missions on its soil dating since early twentieth century. It is these
qualities that have led many an African nation to seek Indian assistance in training
its military leadership. India is not only training military leadership but has also set
up institutions of higher defence learning in many African countries. Yet another
factor which finds greater attraction is the apolitical nature of Indian defence
forces who have willingly accepted civilian supremacy in country’s governance.
It could influence African military leadership to curb the tendency to take over
governance, resolve internecine disputes and bring in peace and stability, a pre-
requisite for progress and prosperity of the African people.
Energy security, military diplomacy, governance, peace and stability, capacity
building, interdependence and training
International Studies
52(1–4) 136–150
2017 Jawaharlal Nehru University
SAGE Publications
DOI: 10.1177/0020881717725411
1 Air Commodore (Retd), Indian Air Force.
Corresponding author:
R. A. Maslekar, 1204, FIESTA, Next to Renault Showroom, Mumbai-Bangalore Bypass Highway, Baner,
Pune 411045, India.

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