India’s role in post-9/11 Afghanistan has been a subject of intense internal policy deliberations. On one hand, India is seen as needing to play a critical role in the reconstruction of the war-ravaged country; on the other hand, India’s growing influence in Afghanistan as a result of its aid diplomacy is thought to have increased Pakistan’s real or imagined concerns of encirclement in what it perceives to be its ‘strategic backyard’. This apparently ‘zero-sum’ geopolitical rivalry between India and Pakistan, dubbed by Western analysts as the ‘new great game’, is a source of further instability.