KERALA

Security Council seat unlikely: former diplomat

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, MARCH 17. There is no likelihood of India becoming a permanent member of the UN Security Council, even one without veto power, within the next 10 years or so, the former diplomat T.P. Srinivasan has said.

He was speaking at a meeting of the Senior Citizens' Association here today.

At present, the majority of the UN members are in favour of Japan and Germany getting permanent membership; a proposal that India does not accept or approve.

The report submitted recently by a committee set up by the UN secretary general to suggest restructuring of the world body has also not favoured expansion of the security council by providing veto power to the new members, he said.

Seeks longer term

The committee has also recommended that member-nations be elected to the security council for longer terms. The idea of rotating the membership finds favour with a lot of nations for the reason that they too can aspire to be members one day, Mr. Srinivasan said.

Though India has had many a disillusionment with the UN, the world body is a very valid and valuable organisation. For very small nations, the UN membership is a badge of honour. For big powers it is a vehicle for implementing their international agenda. India's role and place falls somewhere in between. India's initial approach to the UN that was idealistic and romantic failed to yield results. Now the relationship is more realistic and more mature. Today, India has ceased to seek favours from the UN. Nehru and his advisors made a grave error of judgement in taking the Kashmir issue to the UN and that too under Charter three as a dispute rather than under charter 7 as an issue of aggression, he said.

Pakistan today quotes selectively from UN resolutions on Kashmir. The relevant resolution actually calls for a ceasefire, for India and Pakistan to withdraw all troops from Kashmir and for India to establish an administration in Kashmir prior to the holding of a plebiscite. These conditions were not acceptable to Pakistan then.

India has had its share of disagreements with the UN resolutions on the issue of the right to self-determination, on the issue for armed struggle by people and the issue of human rights, said Mr. Srinivasan.

Disarmament issue

On the disarmament front too India has had its share of disappointments with the UN. Though the initial NPT treaty was drafted by Indians, the final product that was drafted by the UN was totally unacceptable to our country as it was discriminatory. In spite of all this, India's commitment to the UN and its activities has been unwavering. India has taken part in all the UN peacekeeping operations and has lost 88 personnel in such operations, he added.

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