The annual Asian Power Index shows India has fallen short of the major power threshold in 2020.
Based on an assessment of 128 indicators, including military, economic capabilities, diplomatic and cultural influence, as well as resilience and future resources, the analytical tool evaluated international power in Asia.
With an overall power score of 39.7 – down from 41.0 points in 2019, India has fallen short of the threshold of 40 points. However, on global comprehensive power, India remained fourth after the United States, China, and Japan.
New Delhi saw its diplomatic influence ranking improve by two places, defence network by one place, but on the economic front it slipped from 6th to 7th place, overtaken by Australia, according to the report.
"India is more than likely to recover its major power status in the coming years. However, its stepping down in the Index's power classification is telling of the country's predicament. Of all the countries in the Indo–Pacific, India's economy has lost the most growth potential through the damage inflicted by the pandemic", reads the report.
The report says the global pandemic's toll on Indian society has only widened the power disparity between Asia's two most populous countries – India and China.
"India needs to be understood on its own terms. Its rise as a superpower, if it happens, will be a multi-decade effort and is unlikely to be linear. Nevertheless, its ambitions to play a larger role in the region are evident in 2020", the report adds.