Words From Bandung to Relive in Bali and Delhi
- G-7 members: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union.
- Special Invitees this year: Argentina, Indonesia, India, Senegal and South Africa.
- India was not part of the NATO Summit but Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, participated in it.
- G-20 Summit: In Indonesia. India will be the President from December 2022.
- India joining the BRICS Summit showed India’s commitment to BRICS as an alternate for G-7 while showcasing India’s refusal to shun Russia.
- It also showed India’s magnanimity in setting aside the two-year stand-off with China at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) to cooperate in multilateral institutions such as BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
- The BRICS Beijing Declaration showcased the lack of consensus in the group as each has different “National Positions” especially on the Ukraine issue.
- Russia has committed to supply more oil and coal supplies to the BRICS Countries while also proposing to conduct trade in local currencies.
- This could be seen as a way to circumvent the sanctions imposed by the West.
- Along with this, the proposed addition of Argentina and Iran into the grouping could be seen by the US and its Allies as a threat to the world order they have built post 1991.
- The major concern for India will be to figure out how to manage its multitude of relationships in a deeply polarizing world while maintaining strategic autonomy.
- India has so far refused to condone Russia’s aggression in Ukraine while not criticizing it either.
- India has increased the purchase of fertilizer, cement and other commodities from Russia using various ways, including even paying in the Chinese Yuan to circumvent sanctions.
- India is also diversifying its defense infrastructure to reduce its reliance on Russia while increasing tilt towards the US and its allies in the larger Indo-Pacific region.
- In the larger stage India ensured that the BRICS did not support the Russian position on the Ukraine war or any criticism of the West, while working with other partners of the global South to ensure that the G-7 outreach documents carried no criticism of Russia and China.
- India, rather than abstaining from sanctions, should take on the role of a leader as more and more countries feel dissuaded by the growing polarization of the world.
- Although at the United Nations General Assembly, a majority of 141 countries voted to castigate Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, but much fewer, 93, voted to oust Russia from the Human Rights Council. Even more significantly, only 40 countries joined the U.S. and Europe-led sanctions regime against Russia. This showcases the large number of like minded countries who are apprehensive about the prospect of another global war.
- Similarly in 1955 in Bandung when the Cold War was dividing the globe into 2, Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru asked, “If all the world were to be divided up between these two big blocs what would be the result?” at a grouping which later turned into NAM (Non-Aligned Movement).
- Such history can once again be repeated with greater success as unlike before India is now a major player in international politics with a much larger economy and strategically connected with all the major powers.
Source The Hindu
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