October 19, 2006Foreign Affairs

What it means to be posted to the Indian mission in Papua New Guinea

A dekko at the Relevance to India Index

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

It’s classified. But the Hindustan Times tells us a little bit about an index that the external affairs ministry has compiled. It turns out the Relevance for India index (RX) serves as an indicator of the importance of a particular country to India from the political, economic, commercial and cultural perspective on a 1-100 scale”. It is to serve as a basis for the ministry’s ambitious expansion plans’.

Apart from the fact that it reveals that Papua New Guinea (at number 114) is the least relevant to India among the countries indexed, there are no major insights to be had. The United States is the most relevant, followed by Britain, France, Japan, Russia, China, Pakistan and the rest of the subcontinent.

According to the report some officials are shocked that Japan should rank above China. Well, why not? Others are arguing over discrepencies in the way Bhutan, Belgium, Australia, Afghanistan and Thailand were all tied at 67 points’. If it’s only about relevance to India, the rankings seem reasonable enough. But this is also, or indeed really about, the ministry’s expansion plans’. Hence the bureaucratic battle.

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