When the world was divided into two worlds- Capitalist blocked by USA and Communist bloc led by the-then USSR, India preferred to stay away from both of the powers as a result of which third alternative was created which was known by non-alignment. And this was accepted by most of the countries in the third world and this was the best alternative for those countries in Asia and Africa who wanted to play the role of neutral players in the platform of world politics. India, despite being the founder of this non-alignment concept in the international politics, could not be able to keep complete distance from Communist Bloc as USA was posing threat to the security of India. We are all aware of the fact that India was once under the attack from US and UK and at that time, USSR had stretched their hands towards India for help. As a result of this, USSR was being able to increase the level of its influence on India which made USA scared as they were apprehending that it might help USSR in spreading the communist ideology in the whole of South East Asia as well as Indian Subcontinent.. USA had never been friendly to India and had always been helping its natural enemy Pakistan in every possible way though Pakistan has never been able to defeat India in any of the wars with India despite getting all sorts of help from USA. Establishment of Bangladesh being an independent republic was a major blow to the US foreign policy.
Time has changed now. To be precise, time has started to change since 9/11 as USA went for the all round war against Islamic terrorism. Pakistan, despite being one of the allies of NATO, has never given active support in the war on terrorism being a staunch Islamic country. Despite being aware of the fact, Pakistan is still getting all kinds of aids from NATO as they were hoping that it will be utilized in curbing the growing activity of Taliban and ISIS in most of the parts of Pakistan and Afghan- Pakistan border especially in Waziristan. But no result has been generated till now. As a result of this, USA is getting closer to India with the hope that it would help NATO in achieving whatever it wants to achieve… continuation of the war on terrorism and they have already started to view India as one of the most trusted allies in Asia. This is not the only reason. NATO knows very well, India is the only country in Asia which can go for one-on-one fight with China which is basically communist country and is viewed as ideological enemy by the US led NATO. These reasons altogether can make a background for India to create a new dawn in the history of the relationship between India and NATO.
Now, the question is how India would be benefited if it decides to join NATO or if it actually joins NATO? First thing to be remembered that, making decisions for joining NATO might make Russia disappointed. But let’s be practical. India should not be emotional in dealing with Russia. It might have helped India in past days being our allies, but things have changed and USSR is no more. NATO has become dominant figure in the world and it has been able to spread its influence in most of the countries in Asia. India is the country which is viewed as the future of Asia.
China is jealous seeing the growth of India from every aspects and using Pakistan as a pawn against India for the purpose of creating impediments in the way of growth and development and in the way of being super power in Asia. China does not want its position to be challenged by anyone. Things have taken radical turn since the arrival of Narendra Modi in the center of the power being Prime Minister. India is spreading its influence in the south China sea which is not taken lightly by China and most of countries around South China Sea such as Vietnam, Mongolia has join handed with India against China. If war occurs between India and China, India will be in need of allies and NATO will definitely be of great assistance. If India gets NATO status, China will be thinking thousand times before taking any strong steps against India.
Pakistan will also be like a toothless tiger if it gets NATO status and it will be a major boost up for India. If Donald Trump comes into power in White House, then more favorable condition will be created for India and it will get a free hand on Pakistan. NATO does not believe Pakistan anymore being trusted ally for war on terrorism. Pakistan is viewed as the safe haven for Islamic terrorism. With NATO status, India will be more active in keeping Pakistan activity under check.
Most importantly, the way will be paved for India for being member of the UN Security Council and NSG which has always been the desire of India and that will be a great achievement for India. India will also be able to spread its influence in Pacific region which it already has started.
Keeping these points in mind, it can be said that if India wants to be the future of Asia, it should give serious thought on it. But it should also be kept in mind that India can maintain its independence in formulating foreign policy. If all these things go in right direction, the day is not far when India will bring the whole of Asia under its control.