India’s bid for permanent seat

Amit Kushari (IAS)
If this question is put to any Indian the answer would be an emphatic “yes” but if the question is put to our estranged brothers of Pakistan ( who also were Indians a few years ago) the answer will be an emphatic “no”. Sibling rivalries are very common in many families and so nobody is surprised. If “bada bhaiya” has to get anything special, the “chota bhaiya” will move heaven and earth to stall the move. Pakistan has always looked at India as a big brother with evil motives and will therefore dislike any move that will empower the big brother. They feel that their security will be further endangered and that the delicious apple, that is Kashmir, which is hanging from the tree so close to their boundary wall will never fall into their basket.
If we ask this question to a non aligned, neutral country, what will be their answer? It cannot be denied by anyone that 1/6 th of humanity lives in India and India is also a nuclear power. So in the normal course the answer to this question will be …. yes, India’s case should be considered sympathetically. However, only population and nuclear/military power cannot be the major determinant in this question. There are many other issues which will be considered by the international community before allowing India a seat in the high table where the high and mighty rich countries like USA, UK, France, Russia and China are enjoying a privileged position. Only the figure of 125 crores of human beings will not cut much ice with the world at large, if 80 crores out of them are very poor. The world will count India’s population as only 40 crores, ignoring the 85 crores of poor people who live in sub-human conditions. Poor people are always considered as liabilities and not assets. It may sound very bad and improper and impolite, but I would not be very wrong if I say that poor people have no status in this world. A poor man can never sit down at the same dining table with rich people. This is absolutely true, however atrocious it may sound. Let us ask ourselves — how many times do we invite our poor relatives and friends? We only take pride in our rich and powerful acquaintances and relatives and say,” Woh humare rishtedaar hain, dost hain.” If we want the whole world to look at us with respect, we should try to remove poverty from India and only then we will be respectfully invited to sit at the high table. The Prime Minister has correctly said in his speech at the UN that our first priority is poverty alleviation. Our previous governments had also tried to give India its rightful due at the UN but the efforts made by our present Prime Minister is really impressive. He is working very hard and leaving no stone unturned to give India her due. But we have to remember that Pakistan is not our real enemy —- our enemies are poverty, corruption, lack of education, lack of governance, lack of discipline. If we can conquer these evil enemies then what Pakistan says or does will be quite irrelevant for us. The five permanent members will themselves hold our hand and lead us to the high table. A thousand false allegations made by Ms. Maleeha Lodhi will have no impact on the UN. She has said that we are building a wall along the LOC. How is it possible when we have always claimed that POK is an integral part of India. How can we conceivably build a concrete wall between India and another Indian territory under PAK control? Her claim is absurd obviously
However, we must address some realities seriously. The Kashmir issue has to be resolved peacefully without a war before we enter the United Nations premises. At the moment India along with Brazil, Germany and Japan is running a race for a permanent UN seat. While running India has to be free of all hassles. You cannot run freely if you are carrying a bag with a howling cat inside it. Needless to say the Kashmiris are the howling cat. India must pacify the cat at all cost. Give her milk and fish and keep her satisfied. It is in India’s interest to grant maximum autonomy to Kashmir so that they too happily join the race for the UNSC and do not obstruct India.  Our government in Delhi must do something about this without any delay. Also the other evils which I enumerated earlier must be removed as early as possible. When foreigners visit India they should not get a rude shock seeing our dirty roads and overall filthy environment. Nobody should be seen using the road as a latrine and a public urinal. Police and Municipal authorities should be strictly debarred from taking bribes. The caste system must be abolished with an iron hand. Castes are only ancient Hindu tribes which are seriously hampering the smooth growth of a united India. Interreligious hostility and riots severely affect the image of India. The low status of women also surprises the foreigners. This scenario also needs to be changed. Our government too should appear to be liberal and pro human rights. They should not ban books or movies and food items. This creates a very bad impression in the world. We should not only get the UN seat but we should also deserve it fully.
(The author is former Financial Commissioner, J&K Feedback to the author at 09748635185 or amitkus @ hotmail.com or tweet@ amitkushari)
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