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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

President Obama and India’s P-6 Dream

President Barack Obama’s public endorsement for India to a permanent seat in UN Security

Council, has given wings to India. “I can say today, in the years ahead, I look forward to a

reformed United Nations Security Council that includes India as a permanent member,” Obama

addressed the joint Indian Parliament this month. Well, nothing has been done yet, that was a

speech. But President Obama has backed the dream plant that India planted long back. Obama’s

assurance speech is like a monsoon in time for Indian government as US is the fourth, after

France, Britain and Russia, to endorse India when it was waiting for the US endorsement.

Every developed country was probably waiting for this kind of assurance from the current

Super Power, but India bagged the gold. China is ‘concerned’ and Pakistan ‘sore’ over the new

development, so far. It is yet to see how some other countries would react to it in action, not just

in mere speech. But, so far, some have termed it an alliance with Asian power against the rising

China, though we might hail it as the step towards the new world order.

Fine, so what exactly does this dream of Permanent six (P6) means to UN members? Does it

open new doors for other potential members in the world or would it end up being, a sort of,

exceptional package for India, and India alone? Would it add disorder to the race to UN Security

Council or would in fact give shape to the new world order? Above all, is China going to dub

some other country a viable candidate for the Security Council and expand the dream further?

Clearly, the race to the Security Council has started, but who is in the list for the remaining Ps

for the future council?

Let me remind you, the time and tides are with India. George W. Bush inked an agreement

with Indian Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh in 2006 that opened the doors for bilateral Civil

Nuclear Cooperation. That made India the one and only country, with an excess to the nuclear

trade in the world without signing the Non- Proliferation Treaty. The US-India deal became

controversial, but the most contentious part came afterwards. The International Atomic Energy

Association (IAEA), formed four years before India became a nuclear power, had no problem

with the agreement and Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) too granted India an access to Civilian

Nuclear Technology. Point to be noted, this was the same group which was formed a year later

in response to the Indian nuclear explosion in 1974, and stood against Indian proliferation dream

for three decades.

It is astounding to see international rules being dumped like this. It just keeps reminding me

the Asian saying that literally says,’ rules and laws are for the weak and poor’. Yes, incredibly,

India is the only nation, where the international atomic laws simply do not apply. And four

years down the road, president Obama is backing India for Permanent membership in Security

Council. Certainly, India has turned into a global power and we promised it a greater role. But, I

sometimes wonder what promises we have for all those countries which humbly respect the UN

or IAEA and are seriously working for Non- Proliferation. Are we establishing a belief that the

mightier you become the just you are?

Yes, it also looks like; we are, trying to establish a precedent that you have to be a nuclear power

to earn a permanent membership, in the UN Security Council. But, why do you need a nuclear

power in the Council? Are we using nuclear weapons, or have a plan to use them, in future for

humanitarian cause? Are we trying to suggest other UN members that international laws only

work where there is nuclear deterrence involved? If not why is it difficult for us to back a ticket

for some other democratic state in the UN which has followed all the international laws? If

we can not do that why can’t we stop backing those who clearly have violated IAEA rules for

decades? This clearly puts us in a contentious position. Double standard will serve no nation

while dealing with the issues that has an impact on peace and security.

Some international Pundits assume that this assurance was required to balance the overgrowing

influence of China in the world. It is not hard to see the connection, but what if China Proposes

Pakistan, which has already criticized the step as ‘without any moral foundation’, for the council

to counter the US move? Wouldn’t that begin the alliance and secret pacts like that of early 19th

century? United Nations can easily turn into the playground of power politics focusing just the

nuclear powers assuring the theory of nuclear deterrence further. That would be double slap

to the UN members, on all those 189 states dreaming of a world without nuclear weapons and

trying to convince themselves in peaceful co-existence.

I believe, we all agree that, United Nations needs some timely changes to satisfy the new world

order. But it is important to comprehend that the change for the sake of change does not provide

the new order. UN related changes would be efficient or at least less controversial if it starts

through the democratic route in the UN General Assembly. At least the race to name the future

member would cease.

Past is past, we can not change it. But, India seriously is in trouble at present for chasing

its dream. It does not want to sign the NPT because it thinks that would be agreeing to the

provision of five Nuclear Weapons States (NWS), which exclude India, plus agreeing to stop

the proliferation of nuclear weapons. In the other hand, there is no clear way to earn a seat in the

council without violating the current provision of NPT. It would be interesting to see how India

would assure the world to its commitment to the non- proliferation, without signing the NPT.

New role comes with the new responsibility. The biggest democracy in the world, India,

understands this, but it is yet to see, how democratic it is in international forums. That solely

determines its ability to morally stand and ask the UN General Assembly for the dream ticket of

the Security Council.