New York: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi chose the United Nations General Assembly platform to silent his critics who have accused him of downgrading democracy in India. The Prime Minister affirmed that “democracy can deliver, democracy has delivered”, while addressing the High Level segment of the ongoing 76th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on September 25, 2021. This was Prime Minister’s fourth address at the High Level Week of the UNGA.
The theme for 76th UNGA debate is “Building resilience through hope to recover from Covid-19, rebuild sustainably, respond to the needs of the planet, respect the rights of people and revitalize the United Nations”.
Modi though delved deeper on his idea of governance and said his governance vision “is one where no one is left behind through integrated and equitable development”. He cautioned against regressive thinking and extremism and proposed science-based, rational and progressive thinking. “India has been pioneer in transformational role of technology in daily lives of crores of its people, while ensuring its democratic values, he said,adding that a diversified, resilient and expanded global value chain and production centers was in “our collective interest”.
On Afghanistan, Modi called for Afghan soil not to be used by terrorists. Nor should Afghanistan’s predicament be taken advantage of by other states. The world has an obligation to Afghan women, children and minorities, he said. He pointed out that India, during its Presidency of the UN Security Council, shaped an important outcome document on Maritime Security. The international community must speak in one voice to strengthen a rules-based world order, he said.
On the impact of India’s development on global progress, he said it was evident – when India grows, the world grows; when India reforms, the world transforms. He also reiterated that India will soon resume vaccine supplies to the world. He also touched upon the issue of terorrism, and said “Using terrorism as a political tool will backfire on those practising it,” he said
Prior to the start of his address to the UNGA, Prime Minister was greeted by Mr. Abdulla Shahid, President of the 76th session of the General Assembly.
Despite operational challenges and scaled back nature, the 76th UNGA was an important platform for India. As the leading voice of the developing world, Prime Minister’s address at the High-Level Segment of the 76th UNGA provided an opportunity to project India’s views on a range of issues from Covid-19 and vaccine equity, international terrorism, Afghanistan, international peace and security, reformed multilateralism and sustainable development.
“Our engagement with the UN has also helped project our longstanding and growing credentials as a South-South development partner, especially in the context of the India-UN Development Partnership Fund, Financing for Development and India’s commitment to the idea of global partnership under SDG 17 including on climate change,” he said.
– global bihari bureau