Jaishankar the narrative shaper: India’s global stock higher than before, no longer a prisoner of past

In a masterly exposition, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar showcased myriad achievements in foreign policy by underlining that India’s credibility as a candidate for the United Nations Security Council and its credentials as a development partner of the global South have strengthened during nine years of the Modi government.

In a nearly two-hour media briefing in New Delhi, Dr Jaishankar underscored how imaginative foreign policy choices and proactive diplomacy have led to a steady increase in India’s global stature as a self-assured nation and a trusted partner of major power centres.

Summing up multifarious accomplishments of Indian diplomacy, the suave and articulate minister argued forcefully that India is no longer a prisoner of the past and can take independent decisions based on the merits of the issue at hand. “India has greater confidence in dealing with multipolarity and multi-alignment. All this has translated into a virtuous cycle in diplomacy,” he said.

Credible partner of Global South

The global south sees India as a credible effective development partner, said Jaishankar, while underlining a huge transformation in the way the world sees India. He cited the example of an IT centre in Namibia which he visited recently and a train ride in Mozambique, co-built with Indian assistance, as exemplars of India’s development diplomacy that has transformed the lives of people in fraternal developing countries.  “India is increasingly seen as a development partner which delivers on mutually identified projects. We now have a record of stronger time-bound delivery,” said Jaishankar.

“We bring value – there is a lot of interest in the world in partnering with India. India adds value to multilateral groupings. India is the narrative shaper. Today people want to listen to India,” he said.

Message to China

In his sharply phrased presentation, Dr Jaishankar also laid down red lines vis-à-vis China. In a blunt message to Beijing, the minister said China is the only major power centre with which India’s relations have not advanced because Beijing violated border management agreements in 2020 by moving troops to the frontier to “coerce” India. He also made it clear – perhaps for the 100th time – that any expectation that ties can be normalised without peace on the frontier is unfounded since the forward deployment of troops is the main source of continuing tensions.

Author Profile

Manish Chand
Manish Chand
Manish Chand is Founder-CEO and Editor-in-Chief of India Writes Network (www.indiawrites.org) and India and World, a pioneering magazine focused on international affairs. He is CEO/Director of TGII Media Private Limited, an India-based media, publishing, research and consultancy company.