On the issue of getting permanent membership of India in the United Nations Security Council, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said in the Rajya Sabha on Thursday that it will require long patience, effort and aspiration and this will never leave the government behind.
The Foreign Minister said this in response to the clarification made by various members on Jaishankar’s statement on the basis of foreign policy and recent top level foreign visits in the Upper House. On this issue, the Foreign Minister said that we would like that we get it “soon”. “But the practical point of view is that it will take a lot of patience and long efforts.”
He assured the members, “We will not be left behind with long patience, long efforts and great expectations.” He said that we are making progress in this matter. Referring to the recent foreign visits of President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently, Jaishankar said that we have benefited a lot from the visits of our top leaders. He referred to Prime Minister Modi’s visit to three Gulf countries as an example. He said that we have 80 to 90 lakh citizens in the Gulf region. During these visits, the issue of welfare and safety of Indian workers working there was raised.
The External Affairs Minister said that foreign policy means to advance our interests, explain our vision and take care of our people. On the issue of terrorism, he said that it was discussed in the United Nations and a resolution was also passed. He said that with the visits of our leaders, many countries understood our stand on the issue of terrorism and accepted the serious challenge of terrorism.
The Foreign Minister called Pakistan a “unique neighbor” and said that it is different from all other neighbors. But he also said that India wants to improve relations and cooperation in all areas, including maintaining contact with all its neighbors, including Pakistan, under the policy of “Neighbor First”.
On the clarification sought by Congress’s Jairam Ramesh on the nuclear issue, the foreign minister said that the government is negotiating with France on the nuclear issue. He said that it takes many years to do nuclear plants and nuclear agreements. Asked for clarification by the CPI-M’s TK Rangarajan about further construction of the nuclear plant under the Kudankulam project, he said that talks were underway with Russia over the Kudankulam plant. He said that Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office, Jitendra Singh, today assured the House that the government is fully committed to the safety of its nuclear plants and that members should rely on this assurance.
The External Affairs Minister assured the House that the government would respect the recommendation of the National Atomic Energy Commission regarding the Kudankalam project. The Commission has the country’s top scientific and nuclear experts. In the case of climate change, he said that India has played a very positive role in various forums including Paris conference and today it is seen as a leading country in this subject.
Without naming the Howdy Modi program in Houston, USA, the Foreign Minister said, “We saw in Houston that the Indian community stands united with us in America.” He came to Houston to show solidarity with India and support the changes happening in India. We should understand this message. He said that we have good and strong relations with all the parties of America. Our relations with the US are based on a very strong basis.