India on Tuesday said the General Assembly must have a greater say in the process of selection and appointment of the United Nations secretary general.

“The (General) Assembly must have a greater say in the process of selection of the secretary general,” India’s permanent representative to the U.N. Hardeep Singh Puri said in his address to the United Nations General Assembly on the revitalisation of its work.

“The continued circumscribing of the Assembly’s role and responsibilities in the process of selection and appointment of the secretary general needs to change in the interests of the United Nations system in general and the Assembly’s prerogatives in particular,” he said.

Observing that the issue of its revitalisation has assumed particular significance in recent years, Mr. Puri said India firmly believes this can only be achieved when position of General Assembly as the chief deliberative, policy-making and representative organ of the United Nations is respected both in letter and in spirit.

“The General Assembly should take the lead in setting the global agenda and restoring the centrality of the United Nations in formulating multilateral approaches to resolving transnational issues,” Mr. Puri said.

He said that it is critical to establish a proper relationship of respect for respective mandates between the General Assembly and the Security Council in the spirit of the U.N. Charter.

Notably, India is set to join the UN Security Council as its non-permanent member after a gap of 19 years.

It is important that UN Security Council does not encroach upon the mandate of the General Assembly through extremely wide and permissive interpretations of what constitutes a threat to international peace and security, breaches of the peace and acts of aggression, he said.

“As we prepare to join the Security Council, after a gap of 19 years, it is clear that the Council’s agenda is, to say the least, overburdened because it has anointed itself with the responsibility of dealing with issues, though seemingly important, which leave it with less time to deal with the real hotspots that constitute the real threats to international peace and security,” Mr. Puri said.