India, regarded as a key emerging political and economic power, would be the president of the powerful United Nations Security Council in August and again later next year, most likely in November 2012, during its two-year term.
According to the list of its monthly—rotating presidency released by the Security Council, India would preside over the meetings of this 15-membered body in the month of August.
The presidency of the Security Council is held in turn by its members in the English alphabetic order of their names.
India’s presidency would be preceded by its key European ally Germany in July. Lebanon would take over from India the Security Council presidency in September 2011.
Bosnia Herzegovina is the Security Council president for the current month. Brazil is scheduled to take over the presidency in the month of February.
Officials at the U.N. said India would again get a chance next year, most probably in November, a month before its term expires in December 2012.
It was in June 1950, when India for the first time ever presided over the presidency of the Security Council.
Sir Benegal Narsing Rau was the Indian Ambassador to the United Nations then; who again presided over the Security Council meetings in the month of March 1951.
The Security Council has 15 members, five of which are veto wielding permanent members, while the rest 10 are non—permanent members; half of which are elected every alternate years for a two—year term.
The five existing non—permanent members are Bosnia, Brazil, Gabon, Lebanon and Nigeria; while India along with Germany, Portugal, South Africa and Columbia joined the Security Council as its new non—permanent members on January 1. India so far has been elected to the Security Council seven times including the current 2010—2012 term.
India was elected to this prestigious body soon after its independence 1950—1951; thereafter it was elected in 1967—68; 1972—73; 1977—78; 1984—85 and 1991—92.
During its 1967—67 term, India presided over the Security Council only once in the month of September 1967 with Gopalaswami Parthasarathi being its Ambassador.
The then Indian Ambassador to the U.S., Samar Sen, was the president of the Security Council for the month of December 1972 during India’s two—year term of 1972—73; while Rikhi Jaipal presided over its meetings in the month of October 1977 during its two—year term of 1977—78.
Similarly during its 1984—85 term, India got only one chance to preside over the Security Council meetings in February,1985 when Natarajan Krishnan was the Indian Ambassador to the United Nations. However, the then Indian Ambassador to the U.N., Chinmaya. R. Gharekhan, presided over the Security Council meeting twice in October 1991 and December 1992, during India’s last two—year term in the apex body of the United Nations.