Jaishankar Optimistic About Permanent UNSC Seat for India

Rajkot: External affairs minister S. Jaishankar on Tuesday expressed optimism about India’s eventual permanent membership in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and said it is inevitable but emphasised the need for heightened efforts in this regard.

Acknowledging the current dominance of five nations - China, France, Russia, the UK, and the US - as the UN’s original permanent members, the minister said the international momentum was now also favouring India’s bid for a permanent seat.

Addressing intellectuals in Gujarat’s Rajkot city, the EAM stressed that diligent work is essential to secure this coveted position. The United Nations was formed around 80 years ago, and these five nations decided among themselves to become permanent members of its security council, Jaishankar said.

“Now, there is a feeling across the world that this should change, and India should get a permanent seat. I see this feeling increasing every year,” he said, adding “we will definitely get it. But nothing big is ever achieved without hard work...we will have to work hard, and this time we will have to work even harder”.

Meanwhile, during an interaction with reporters, Jaishankar in a stern warning to the international community cautioned them against unwarranted political commentary on India’s internal matters, stressing that any such interference would be met with a “very strong reply.” Jaishankar’s remarks came in the wake of recent statements by envoys from the US, Germany, and the United Nations regarding the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal by the Enforcement Directorate.

“Somebody asked a person from the UN (about Kejriwal’s arrest), and he gave some reply. But in other cases, I would say very frankly these are old habits, these are bad habits,” Jaishankar told reporters.

The Minister emphasised the importance of respecting the sovereignty of nations and refraining from meddling in each other’s domestic affairs. “There is a certain ‘maryada’ (restraint) among countries. We are sovereign countries, we should not be interfering in each other’s internal affairs, we should not be passing comments about each other’s politics,” he added.

In regard to tension with China, Jaishankar, during his interaction with industry leaders at a programme in Surat, said tension with China has caused “abnormality” in New Delhi-Beijing relations and India’s thinking is absolutely clear that unless there is peace and stability in the border areas, the ties between the two Asian powers will not improve.

He said to compete with China on the economic front, India should focus on manufacturing, a key sector which was ignored by governments before Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in 2014. “If we have to compete with China, which we should, then its solution is that we should focus on manufacturing here. Our approach towards manufacturing has changed after Modiji came to power. Before that, people did not give much emphasis on manufacturing,” Jaishankar said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle with agency inputs )
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