As part of its
Forecast Series IPCS, in collaboration with the India International Centre, has
published five projections on the likely trends and events to occur 2015. The
papers covered were West Asia (by Amb. Ranjit Gupta), the Islamic State (by Rajeshwari
Krishnamurthy), the prospects of the negotiations over Iran’s nuclear
capacities (by Ruhee Neog), the situation in Bangladesh (by Prof. Delwar Hossain)
and in Nepal (by Pramod Jaiswal). These papers were put before two expert panels
to review and critique on the afternoon of 9 February 2015.
The first panel consisted of Amb. Ishrat
Aziz and Prof. Anwar Alam, with Mr Rana Banerji as Chair, who discussed
extensively with the authors the situation within Saudi Arabia and the dynamics
of the royal succession, the possibility of Israel playing a spoiler to any
deal between the US and Iran, the extent that ISIS could be a threat or
defeated, the similarities between ISIS’s actions and other states throughout
the region, the rise of Iran as a stable regional power and the likely problems
facing region from the ‘fractured’ Yemen, Syria and Iraq.
The second panel consisted of Amb.
Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty and Maj Gen (retired) Ashok Mehta, with Amb. Deb
Mukharji as Chair, who discussed with the authors the causes behind the
increasing street violence in Bangladesh and the like outcomes of this in 2015,
the extent that the domestic political turmoil would impact external relations
and investment in Bangladesh, the likely continuation of the political deadlock
in Nepal and the extent that external powers, especially India, can play in
resolving it. Both sessions were followed by response by questions from the
audience answered by the authors and panel members.