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Beyond Nation & States Profile

Beyond Nation & States

English, News, 2 seasons, 26 episodes, 21 hours, 26 minutes
The podcast ‘Beyond Nation and State’ is about international affairs from a South Asia perspective. As the title indicates, we will not only talk about nations and states, but go beyond. Discussions about international affairs tend to be mostly about rivalries between nations, border disputes and war. This podcast is interested in all of that, but will particularly emphasise the role of people, business corporations, movements and resistance, international organizations and institutions. It will also feature discussions on identity, literature and culture. Suno India's Beyond Nation and State is an attempt to broaden the meanings of internationalism and globalism as we know it.
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Delhi Declaration and Shifting Sands In The Gulf

The curtains came down on a successful G20 summit hosted by India with a 100% consensus on the Delhi Declaration. The declaration saw watered down language on the Russia Ukraine war  to reach a consensus. The African Union has become the latest member of the grouping.  On the sidelines of the summit, the U.S., Saudi Arabia, UAE and India, among others, announced an ambitious infrastructure project-the India Middle East Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC), seen as a counter to China’s Belt and Road Initiative.  On the 15th and final Episode for the current season of the foreign policy podcast Beyond Nation and State on Suno India, Independent Journalist and Host Smita Sharma spoke to retired career diplomat Navdeep Suri. Navdeep Suri has served as Indian Ambassador to UAE and Egypt, former High Commissioner to Australia and is a Distinguished Fellow with the Observer Research Foundation. See for privacy information.
9/16/202337 minutes, 45 seconds
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Russia-Ukraine War- Europe's Afghanistan?

18 months and counting…Russia’s full blown invasion of Ukraine continues with no political resolution in sight to the war. With the conflict prolonged and the battlefield unpredictable, what is the physical and economic cost of this war in Russia and Ukraine, Europe and beyond? Is there any challenge to President Putin in Russia, or has he emerged stronger with the top brass of mercenary Wagner group including Prighozin eliminated.  On Episode 14 of the foreign policy podcast Beyond Nation and State on Suno India, Independent Journalist and host Smita Sharma spoke to Alexander Gabuev. Gabuev is the  Director of Carnegie Russia Eurasia Center in Berlin and a Senior Advisor at Albright Stonebridge Group. He contributes regularly to a wide range of international publications See for privacy information.
9/8/202344 minutes, 20 seconds
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BRICS2.0- Expansion for Good Or Dilutes Agenda?

The 15th BRICS summit  in Johannesburg South Africa saw a significant decision to expand the membership of the grouping that held its founding summit in 2009 in Yekaterinburg in Russia. For the first time since BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) countries accepted South Africa as a full member in 2010, expanding the forum to BRICS, consensus has been reached to invite six new countries as full members. Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the UAE-have been invited as full members with effect from 1st January 2024.   Several other countries are being considered as dialogue partners- Prime Minister Modi said. Is this expansion-which was led by China and backed by Russia and South Africa initially, good for India? What kind of a power shift does BRICS 2.0 signify? What is the geopolitical impact of groupings  like SCO, BRICS today ?  On Episode 13 of the foreign policy podcast Beyond Nation and State on Suno India, Independent Journalist and Host Smita Sharma spoke to former Deputy National Security Advisor and retired career diplomat Pankaj Saran. 1982 batch IFS , Pankaj Saran has as served as India’s ambassador to Russia and High Commissioner to Bangladesh. Currently he is the Convenor of Nat Strat- a Delhi-based independent Centre for Research on Strategic and Security Issues. See for privacy information.
8/31/202339 minutes
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Imran Khan bowled out by Pak Army?

Cricketer turned politician, the former Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan is behind bars. Dozens of cases against him- serious charges of corruption, incitement of violence, abuse of authority to leaking of official secrets. He has been barred from fighting elections for five years. Is this the end of the road for the outsider who challenged political dynasts in Pakistan - the Sharifs and the Bhuttos? What triggered the souring of relations between the army-ISI and Khan who was seen as the establishment's blue eyed boy when he won the elections in 2018? What does Imran Khan’s arrest mean for his party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf and for the struggling democracy in Pakistan?  On Episode 12 of the weekly  Foreign Policy Podcast Beyond Nation And State on Suno India, a look at the political turmoil within Pakistan and the future of Imran Khan. Independent journalist and host Smita Sharma speaks to Raza Ahmad Rumi, a noted Pakistani policy analyst, senior journalist, editor and an author based in the US. Raza Rumi is Director, Park Center for Independent Media and teaches in the journalism department at Ithaca College. He is also a Professor at Cornell Institute for Public Affairs.See for privacy information.
8/24/202341 minutes, 40 seconds
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How Gender Inclusive Is Indian Foreign Policy?

What is a Feminist foreign policy? Does inclusion of more women and application of a gender inclusive lens lead to more human and sustainable foreign policy outcomes? How are countries working on the subject?  As India celebrates its 77th Independence Year and chairs the G20 Presidency, how gender inclusive is the foreign policy of a country which has seen several woman diplomats lead the way since CB Muthamma.  On Episode 11 of the Foreign Policy podcast Beyond Nation and State on Suno India, Independent Journalist and host Smita Sharma spoke to Ambika Vishwanath, Co-Founder  of geopolitical advisory Kubernain Initiative based in Mumbai. Ambika Vishwanath has been a Young Leader at the Munich Security Conference and works on Water security, gender and International Relations. Kubernain published a research paper on Opportunities for a more Inclusive Indian Foreign Policy in 2022- You can listen to all the episodes of the Foreign Policy Podcast Beyond Nation and State ohe Suno India app, Spotify as well as Apple Podcasts. New episodes drop every Wednesday. See for privacy information.
8/16/202342 minutes, 10 seconds
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Invisible Chains- Human Trafficking in South Asia

30th July is observed by the UN as the World Against Trafficking in Persons Day.  This year’s theme was ‘Reach every victim of trafficking, leave no one behind’. On Episode 10 of the Foreign Policy Podcast Beyond Nation and State on Suno India, we talk about the scale of this crisis in South Asia in particular where a quarter of the world’s population lives today.  Independent journalist and host Smita Sharma spoke to celebrated photojournalist Smita Sharma who has documented the human trafficking network and crisis across South Asia in her powerful book We Cry in Silence. The book documents the trafficking of underage girls across South Asia and has won the Photography Book of the Year Award of Excellence by Pictures of the Year International and was listed in the Top 10 Photo Books by the International Center of Photography. The episode focuses on how the human trafficking network thrives, legal and policing loopholes,  the socio-cultural perceptions of survivors of trafficking, responsible reporting of human trafficking and more.  Tune in to the Suno India App to listen to all episodes of Beyond Nation And State. You can also listen in to the weekly episodes on Apple and Spotify podcasts.See for privacy information.
8/4/202346 minutes, 40 seconds
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Srilanka - A year after The Aragalaya protests!

Srilanka witnessed massive protests- called the Aragalaya movement last year against the government in the wake of the worst economic crisis the country faced since its independence. By July events unfolded fast with homes of lawmakers and politicians being torched. President Gotabaya Rajapksa was forced to flee Srilanka and resign. Six-time Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was elected the new president, despite the protesters demanding the entire ruling elite quit. A brutal military crackdown on the protestors followed soon removing them from Galle Face Green.  In the last one year Srilanka assisted by India, Japan, World Bank, it has tried to find a way out of the debt crisis and seeking and International Monetary Fund bail out. President Wickramesinghe was in Delhi recently on his first bilateral visit since resuming office last year and held formal talks with Prime Minister Modi.  So is there faith in his leadership now in Srilanka? Does the country feel it is headed on a positive trajectory now? How are the youth reacting to the political process?  On episode 9 of the Foreign Policy Podcast Beyond Nation and State, we try and understand the underlying currents in Srilanka -what lies beneath the surface. Independent Journalists and Host Smita Sharma is joined by Dilrukshi Handunnetti- Award-winning journalist and lawyer. She is a founder and director of the Colombo-based Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR).See for privacy information.
7/26/202341 minutes
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The Taiwan Strait Crisis

Chinese President Xi Jinping paid a visit to the Eastern Theatre Command's headquarters on 6th July. This is the command in charge of the region around Taiwan. While there Xi warned about a 'new period of turmoil and change for the world’. This warning also came just days ahead of Taiwan’s main annual Han Kuang military exercises.  Has Xi upped the ante on Taiwan? Will China force a reunification with Taiwan in the near future through military escalation?  And what would the next Taiwan Strait military conflict mean for the US, India and the world.  On Episode 8 of the foreign policy podcast Beyond Nation And State, independent journalist and host talks about the history of the Taiwan crisis, changing dynamics with the island and the Peoples’ Republic of China, and what is at stake for India and the world if it leads to a flare up involving the world’s two biggest powers of US and China.  In conversation with Vijay Gokhale, Retired career diplomat, former envoy to Malaysia, Germany and China and Former Foreign Secretary.  He is the author of  3 important books -  Tiananmen Square: The Making of a Protest, The Long Game: How the Chinese Negotiate with India, and After Tiananmen: The Rise of ChinaVijay Gokhale  is currently a Non-Resident senior fellow at Carnegie IndiaAnd has authored a recent working paper on -‘What should India do before the next Taiwan Strait Crisis.’ See for privacy information.
7/20/202345 minutes, 40 seconds
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Does India Understand a Changing Nepal?

Pushp Kamal Dahal, or Prachanda was on his first official overseas visit to India in June this year in his his current term as Prime Minister of Nepal. There were some important outcomes from his meeting with Prime Minister Modi but also some controversies Ince he returned home including over the mural depicting Akhand Bharat including Nepal, on display in India’s new parliament building.  What are some of the deep fault lines plaguing India Nepal relations? With 70% of its population less than 40 years of age, how Is Nepalese society changing? Why does democracy remain so fragile and governments unstable in Nepal? What is Nepal’s long view of its relations with India and China?  In Episode 5 of Beyond Nation and State, Independent Journalist and Host Smita Sharma is in conversation with Kathmandu based Editor and Writer Amish Raj Mulmi. He is the author of the recent book 'All Roads Lead North: Nepal's Turn to China.'See for privacy information.
6/28/202349 minutes
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#Rewind- The nuclear deal that changed Indo-US Ties

India and the US today are working closely on critical and emerging technology. The US-India initiative on Critical and Emerging Technology (iCET) will be an important component in talks during the upcoming State Visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Washington DC. He will be only the third Indian leader after President Radhakrishan in 1963 and Dr. Manmohan Singh in 2009 to be hosted on a State Visit by the American President.  While the India US relations have undergone massive transformations in the last decade and a half, the one deal that reshaped and reset the contours of this relation was the 123 agreement or the India-US civil nuclear agreement inked in 2008. This marked a strategic repositioning of Indian foreign policy overcoming the deep mistrust of the US in the post Cold War era. It also ended the  nuclear apartheid and discrimination that India was subjected to despite being a nuclear weapons power.  This deal involved intricate and complicated diplomacy and negotiations over a period of 3 years under the leadership of US President George W Bush and Indian PM Dr. Manmohan Singh.  On Episode 2 of Beyond Nation and State season 2, we turn back the clock to reflect on what played out behind the scenes in obtaining a special waiver from the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group and inking the agreement. What still holds back the deal and the future of nuclear energy.  Smita Sharma speaks to Ambassador Shyam Saran, former Foreign Secretary and Prime Minister’s Special Envoy, currently the President of the India International Centre. Among the key architects who made the deal a possibility, Saran shares the make it or break it moments and sharp insights from the drawing board table.See for privacy information.
6/7/20231 hour, 8 minutes, 10 seconds
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Central Asia and Regional Power Play

In her debut episode today, senior journalist and host of this season of Beyond Nation & State, Smita Sharma is going to talk about a region which hardly finds mention or coverage in Indian mainstream media but it should. She was recently in Uzbekistan to cover a constitutional referendum under its strongman President Mirziyoyev. So why talk about Uzbekistan? Because the country is opening up and transforming at a great speed with implications for the region and India. The former Soviet republics in the Central Asian region- Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Kyrgyzstan - have large swathes of territory rich in natural resources and with geo strategic importance. The Central Asian countries are also the key driving force within the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation that India is chairing this year. PM Modi will host the SCO Heads of States and Governments in July.  While in Tashkent- the beautiful Uzbek capital, Smita sat down to speak to a renowned journalist and analyst Dr. Beruniy Asimov, Founder and Director, New Media Education Center, Tashkent about what a changing Uzbekistan means for the region and how ties with India looked upon amid the influence of dominant players Russia and China. She also speaks with Ambassador Ashok Sajjanhar in Delhi who is a retired diplomat who has served as Indian envoy in Kazakhstan, Sweden & Latvia. He is associated with several prominent think tanks including ORF and Ananta Aspen Centre.See for privacy information.
5/31/20231 hour, 21 minutes
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World Press Freedom Day: What are the many meanings of freedom?

Press freedom is increasingly endangered across the world. At least 28 journalists were killed due to their work in 2021, with India and Mexico topping the list of countries with the most media worker deaths, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Journalists in many countries are feeling the pressure as they are arbitrarily imprisoned, silenced or killed in some instances, for the work they do.  But journalists are continuing to push boundaries and in some cases are transcending borders to report on important causes. Notwithstanding the global climate of curbs on freedom of expression, a handful of intrepid foreign correspondents from India are travelling across the world to tell stories on human rights, culture, politics and resistance.  In a special episode on the various meanings of press freedom foreign correspondent Priyanka Borpujari talks to host Urvashi Sarkar about the various meanings of freedom as a journalist and why frontlines need not always imply war and conflict. She explores concepts of not just freedom from oppression but also freedom to practice the profession on her own terms.  Priyanka is an award-winning journalist currently based in Ireland. She has previously reported from Japan, India, El Salvador, Indonesia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Argentina. Between 2018 and 2019, she walked 1,200 kms across north and northeast India on the Out of Eden Walk with Pulitzer-winning journalist Paul Salopek, which traces the path of human migration. Her journalism has been published in a wide range of international and Indian news publications. She speaks 7 languages.See for privacy information.
5/2/202258 minutes, 20 seconds