The search for sustainable energy has forced for the first time Union government to look beyond the traditional source to secure country against the variable prices especially of fuel. India being the largest energy gulping country with not much of its domestic production has to import from outside in dollar-rupee term which has resulted in high excise and custom duty making fuel a high cost proposition. Having an effective energy security will help in insulating the country against this fluctuating rupee-dollar relations. A strong energy reserve for at least three-month backup would keep the nation on a stable keel economically and can take development to the next level. India’s reserve is slowly being built in Vishakhapatnam, Mangalore and Padur. The government wants it ultimately to be able to cover 90 days of oil supply. Besides this India would be tapping alternative source for natural gas. With the sanctions now lifted, India is moving quickly to secure energy sources, and tie up additional elements of a strategic relationship with Iran, even as Saudi Arabia cements its position as India’s top petroleum source. Although the gas field had been offered to India some time back, the western energy sanctions against Iran made this difficult. Despite the move to cleaner renewable energy sources India is committed to add 175 GW in renewable energy to its energy mix, for the foreseeable future, fossil fuels will continue to provide the base load energy. Under the previous Congress-led government there were few successful attempts to engage in the geopolitical arena of Central Asia. However, the BJP government now has the opportunity to assert India’s influence in Central Asia and secure greater access to the region’s abundant natural resources. This would mean re-invigorating a diplomatic activism with Pakistan and Afghanistan, which never quite got off the ground till date.
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