Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Narendra Modi’s historic hat-trick: Positioning of India in the world


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New Delhi, June 4: When Exit Polls for 2024 Lok Sabha elections were released, many expressed disagreements over the calculations made by Indian media houses. The NDA joyfully lauded the exit polls while the Congress did a flip-flop on TV debates, exhibiting its lack of confidence in the INDIA bloc.

The fear of losing elections even saw inciteful statements from leaders like Akhilesh Yadav, who said ‘Karo ya Maro’ regarding the Lok Sabha Election results during a press briefing.

However, all that ceased to end on Tuesday when the NDA finally defeated the INDIA bloc and is now ready to form next government.

The slogan of ‘400 par’ is gone as NDA has ended up close to 300. Several factors like low turn-out, Muslim consolidation, in-fights, selection of candidates, etc seem to have thwarted BJP’s dream of ‘400 paar’. Also, many reports highlighted about the ‘intervention of foreign powers’ in the Lok Sabha elections.

Nonetheless, ahead of Modi 3.0 assuming charge, various speculations are heating up the debate pertaining to India’s role in World politics.

* Two Major Conflicts: The Russia-Ukraine War and the Israel-Hamas War

As the two major ongoing conflicts, that is, the Russia-Ukraine War and the Israel-Hamas War, are taking place, India’s stand and its role are being looked at. It has been quite evident that India maintained a balancing attitude simultaneously in dealing with Russia and the United States by not voting against it neither in the UNSC nor in the UNGA. Rather, it increased the Oil purchase from Russia, evading all sorts of pressure from the West by putting emphasis on its energy demands, which can also be reflected in the statement made by India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar. Modi government has reaffirmed, meanwhile, that it supports a ceasefire and the dispersal of hostilities between the two countries.

The Israel-Hamas conflict that started on Oct 7, 2023, after the unprovoked attack by Hamas Militia, also frowned the eyes of world leaders and various stakeholders as to what stand India would take. India criticized the attack launched by Hamas, but at the same, it pitched for a ceasefire and peace concerning the conflict between the two.

* India’s positioning in the Global South and the United Nations

The consecutive third term of the Narendra Modi government would not only strengthen India’s positioning in the Global South but also cater to India’s interest in the World forums like the United Nations. India has long been demanding a permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council, which was also mentioned in BJP’s manifesto. “We are committed to seeking permanent membership in the UN Security Council to elevate Bharat’s position in global decision-making,” the manifesto read. Had the government not repeated this, the stand might have been different, which is not the case.

India’s initiative, the International Solar Alliance, exhibits the sustainable worldview that the Narendra Modi government has maintained on the world forums. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi originally suggested this idea in a speech at Wembley Stadium (London) in November 2015, when he referred to sunshine countries as Suryaputra (“Sons of the Sun”).

Subsequently, the CCP-led China, which is becoming a challenge to democratic governments, and the Global South would also be contained by India’s rising power under the NDA government. The NDA government is expected to focus more on Multilateral Alliances like QUAD to challenge the CCP’s expansionism. Moreover, being a rising power in the Global South, India’s no-tolerance stand on terrorism will certainly show the path to the world as to how to deal with the menace and emerge as the leader of the undisputed Global South.

* India’s Digital Infrastructure: A role model for the world

The ambitious plan of the Narendra Modi government created a world-class digital infrastructure in India that certainly paved the way for the world to reduce dependency on cash and other sorts of bureaucratic hurdles. Several heads of various countries were found using digital payments in India at the local vendors. Moreover, during the COVID-19 pandemic, when the world was struggling with social distancing, India’s digital infrastructure proved to be the best in the world, which shifted its operations from paper to paperless. Such an infrastructure was applauded earlier by global institutions and world leaders, which provides confidence in the government for more such initiatives.

In the longer run, the Narendra Modi government is expected to perform better both domestically and internationally. The world is becoming one entity due to interdependence and interconnectedness in this era of globalization and digitalization. This entity can also be termed as a family, which Prime Minister Narendra Modi has recognized by saying, ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbkam’ at several global forums. That is why, any activity of one country affects all, as what we have seen in the two major conflicts. In a similar way, the world community at large, as well as India’s neighbours, would be impacted by Narendra Modi’s leadership.

(The writer is the author of a book titled – The Puritan Movement: US Universities and their anti-Bharat Approach. Views are personal)



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