Pakistan must shun terror if it wants peace with India: Modi

nveiling a big-picture vision of India’s foreign policy and its organic linkage with the ongoing transformation of the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has underlined his dream of “a thriving well-connected and integrated neighbourhood,” but singled out Pakistan’s use of terror as an obstacle in fructifying this quest.

In an all-encompassing speech on the emergence of “multi-polarity with multilateralism,” as the new normal in the evolving international geopolitical landscape, Mr Modi reminded Pakistan “to walk away from terror if it wants to walk towards dialogue with India.”

“A thriving well-connected and integrated neighbourhood is my dream,” said Mr Modi at the inaugural session of the second edition of Raisina Dialogue, a signature foreign policy conference organised by Ministry of External Affairs, in collaboration with Observer Research Foundation.

“My vision for our neighbourhood puts a premium on peaceful and harmonious ties with entire South Asia. That vision had led me to invite leaders of all SAARC nations, including Pakistan, for my swearing in,” he said. “For this vision, I had also travelled to Lahore. But, India alone cannot walk the path of peace,” he said. “It also has to be Pakistan’s journey to make. Pakistan must walk away from terror if it wants to walk towards dialogue with India.”

Mr Modi’s expose of Pakistan in front of an audience, which also comprised ministers and experts from over 60 countries, was an extension of his diplomatic campaign to isolate Pakistan in the aftermath of the terror attacks in Uri and Pathankot last year.

Mr Modi, however, struck a more nuanced position on India’s relations with China, which remain conflicted and marred by differences over a host of issues, including Beijing’s continuing opposition to India’s membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group.

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Modi to Indian envoys: No balancing, India must lead

No balancing or containment for India. Position India in the leadership role in the world. This was the overarching message of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to heads of Indian missions as he underlined the new template of proactive holistic diplomacy, which entails harnessing the global environment to enable India to play a leadership role, upgrading capacity to deal with new-age threats, promoting the country’s soft power and setting the tone for global climate change negotiations.
In an oblique critique of India’s hitherto defensive foreign policy, Mr Modi exhorted Indian envoys to shed “old mindsets” and help the country position itself in a leading role, rather than just a balancing force globally. The formulation will be specially scrutinised in China where the diplomatic-strategic establishment has often accused India of ganging up with the US and Japan to contain Beijing’s rise.
“The present global environment represents a rare opportunity, when the world is keen to embrace India, and India is moving forward with confidence,” Mr Modi said while inaugurating a four-day “Heads of Indian Missions” conference, which is themed “diplomacy with development. Around 120 envoys from Indian missions abroad have gathered in the Indian diplomat for brainstorming sessions on the future trajectory of India’s diplomacy, the first such meeting under the Narendra Modi government.

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