The 17th summit of Non Aligned Movement (NAM) was held in Venezuela recently. The Vice President Hamid Ansari represented India in it. This is the second time (once in 1979), that the Prime Minister of the country was absent from the summit.
The non aligned movement (NAM) is a group of countries, not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. They are mostly the developing ones, or a part of the Third world.
Whether India still continues to be a part of NAM or not has become a big concern recently.
But it is true that India still adheres to the following principles of NAM:
- Respect for fundamental human rights and for the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
- Respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all nations.
- Recognition of the movements for national independence.
- Recognition of the equality of all races and of the equality of all nations, large and small.
- Abstention from intervention or interference in the internal affairs of another country.
- Respect for the right of each nation to defend itself singly or collectively, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations.
- Refraining from acts or threats of aggression or the use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any country.
- Settlement of all international disputes by peaceful means, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations.
- Promotion of mutual interests and co-operation.
- Respect for justice and international obligations.
Apart from adhering to these principles, India has also benefited from NAM at several occasions:
- In India’s efforts to counter the expansion of UN Security Council.
- NAM has helped in possible identification of the new permanent members of UNSC
- NAM is more or less a heritage like the Common Wealth
- NAM countries remain united in the larger global issues.
But some of the moves by India have raised the question of whether NAM is still relevant for India or not:
- India’s closer ties with the U.S.
- India’s change in the present foreign policy
- India’s keeping out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty
- India’s bid to isolate Pakistan
Despite of the moves taken by India time and again, it has not made NAM irrelevant. One cannot depend only upon the present political scenario to decide NAM’s importance. NAM is a part of India’s larger vision. NAM has been and will always be an effective platform for India to discuss the various global issues including the most crucial one, zero tolerance towards terrorism.
Reference: The Hindu