• Dr Hanifur Rehman
  • Faheem Ullah Khan


Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Islamists, Taliban, Kashmir



History shows that Pakistan and India have been vying for power in Afghanistan and they have been locked in a zero-sum struggle there since the inception of both the countries in 1947. Pakistan’s losses in Afghanistan are considered India’s victory and vice versa. The animosity between the two adversaries has manifested itself in a competition on the soil of Afghanistan for having a political clout, reminiscent of the competition and rivalry between the Tsarist Russia and then its successor, the Communist Russia, and the British Empire in the 19th and 20th centuries, respectively, and generally known as the “Great Game.” The antagonism between Pakistan and India has been so strong and deep that both the countries lose no opportunity to checkmate each other on the Afghan soil. This paper is aimed at looking into the factors of Indo-Pak rivalry in Afghanistan. It will also shed light on Indo-Afghan relations in historical perspective and India’s geo-political and geo-strategic interests in Afghanistan. Besides, the paper will also address the questions that what are the interests of Pakistan and India in Afghanistan and what are the implications of Indo-Pak rivalry in Afghanistan for the region and world at large.

Author Biographies

Dr Hanifur Rehman

Lecturer at History Department, Peshawar University.

Faheem Ullah Khan

Lecturer at IR Department, National Defence University, Islamabad




How to Cite

Rehman, Dr Hanifur, and Faheem Ullah Khan Khan. 2014. “INDO-PAKISTAN ZERO-SUM RIVALRY AND AFGHANISTAN”. Journal of Contemporary Studies 3 (2):15-27.