Regional Nonproliferation Regime (RNR)
The NPT based nuclear nonproliferation regime cannot recognize states that conducted nuclear tests after 1 January 1967 as nuclear weapon states and keeping the two declared nuclear possessor states (India–Pakistan) permanently outside does not help serve the nonproliferation objectives. Failure by the international community to deal with this structural discrepancy continues to remain one of the major stresses on the NPT, besides preventing the universalization of global nuclear nonproliferation norms. It is therefore important that new and innovative approaches must be explored to help integrate the non-NPT nuclear states into mainstream nonproliferation regime by offering a tangible quid pro quo. To overcome NPT’s structural anomaly, India–Pakistan could consider several bilateral initiatives that would not only strengthen the global nonproliferation regime but could also provide recognition to these states as responsible nuclear powers.