“Earth is Pure! Let there be welfare of the masses, let there be health,” this happens to be the refrain from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s veritable and vibrant viva voice before the global community which is perched atop a precarious pedigree of conflict and communitarian impoverishment.
With the Indian stress on the attainment of the agenda 2030 along with a clarion call to eradicate mass poverty, PM Modi’s diplomatic demarche is very clearly pronounced. The Indian leader aims at the eradication of mass poverty along with the notion of societal and financial inclusion, and posits the Indian potential for global leadership before the larger comity of states.
There is an eternal debate about the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by India, so in tandem with that idiom, Modi has unfurled an agenda of ‘supine sustainability’ for the advancement of the global norms of peace building, peace keeping and attaining an equitable rostrum for the voices and interests of the developing nations in the sphere of climate change negotiations.The idea of Public Diplomacy through the mode of personal charm and strength of personal strength gets an amicable reflection in this visit by the Indian Prime Minister.
In tandem with the quest for a sustainable future, a United Nations ESCAP report (UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific) says: “As the deadline of the attainment of the MDGs is 2015, a new set of Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs) would be set up. All this amounts to providing a life reflective of eradicated hunger, poverty and malnutrition along with all this culminating into a life of dignity for the people of the nation. India has achieved the objective of achieving the goal of nearly halving the goal of poverty eradication and maternal mortality by three quarters. The nation is also all set to halve the proportion of population without access to clean drinking water.” All this is to be achieved by a deft adherence to the drivers such as broad based employment growth, good governance, extending basic infrastructure networks, promoting gender equity and the empowerment of women.”
Thus, the entire edifice of what PM Modi has fervently pleaded before the international community, amounts to a sustainable future for the nation with the worldwide recognition of the leadership potential and a role for India at the larger global platform. The Indian Prime Minister has innovated with the new idiom of showcasing India as the novae leader of the developing comity of nations. The marked reference to the attention being played by the Indian governing dispensation to a Kantian “Universalis Civiltas” presents the new version of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’. This is something which was present as a subterranean mindset of the Indian tradition but now it has ‘surfaced’ with a new vengeance and global effectiveness which reflects the potency of India. The Prime Minister’s speech at UNGA, too, reflected the Indian judicious claim to become a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.
In this connection, India has already collaborated with Brazil, Germany and Japan’s leaders on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the United Nations. The Prime Minister, too, presented a book ‘India at UN’ penned by India’s permanent representative to the UN Ashok Mukerjee, to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon. It succinctly reflects a narrative on India’s historical association with United Nations beginning with India’s ratification of the U N Charter in 1945 to the Indian role in the Korean Nations Reparation Commission in the aftermath of the Korean War in the 1950s.
Thus, PM Modi’s visit to the United States this year ushers in the electricity of his Madison Square speech of last year, though the UNGA oration is much more official and formal but the tenor is very reflective of the global Indian role in the international polity. He went on to orate then, as it can be paraphrased, “The air in New York is replete with traditional city electricity with the verve of the youth animating the environment. It is only because of the Indo-American community that we have made such a great amount of progress. If you would not have been there, there would have been no IT revolution. One can astutely say now that our ancestors used to play with snakes but now we play with a mouse.”
The inclusion of Sunder Pinchai of Google, Shantanu Narayan of Adobe and Satya Nadela of Microsoft will enable the American community to get to learn the Indian side of the modernisation story. In attendance were American Parliamentarians such as the House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, Tulsi Gabbard (Democrat- Hawaii), Ami Bera and George Holding, two co-chairs of the influential Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans. The Indian caucus plays a significant role in streamlining the Indian standpoint and issue areas in an effective manner before the American government and other lawmakers. The visit of the Prime Minister stresses the leadership role and a universal and benevolent role played by India in a world riven by the rise of the ISIS, the Syrian conflict and the shaky climate change scenario.
The visit also enhances the already-on-the-move Indo-US bilateral relationship which received a fillip last year by PM Modi’s address to the UNGA and President Obama’s visit to India as the Republic Day guest. Last year, too, the Indian Prime Minister had stressed on rejuvenating the democratic culture of United Nations to bring out relevant reforms in the United Nations Security Council.
Last year references also included the expression of a political will to have a dialogue with Pakistan despite provocations. This year too, the UNGA speech comes in the aftermath of the tricky cancellation of the NSA talks. This is somewhat similar to what happened last year at UNGA in September 2014. Still, India has made a global plea for ushering in peace, stability and most significant of all, ‘sustainability’ for the larger advancement of the global interests.