Except for a few, we have been able to avenge our soldiers’ death by eliminating terrorist groups fuelled by our hostile neighbours. However, soldiers who gave their lives at UN peacekeeping missions have never got justice, since those territories were not in direct confrontation with us. But things are changing now and PM Modi is leading the charge with chiding remarks to the UN.
PM Modi talks to UN
Prime Minister Modi has raised the issue of the sacrifice of Indian Jawans in Congo to António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations. He asked him to punish those who launched these attacks on Indian soldiers. Few days back, 3 soldiers were killed by locals out of which 2 were Indians and 1 Moroccan, the same people who are alive because Indian soldiers are stationed there for protecting them.
Informing about the phone call, PM Modi tweeted, “Spoke to UNSG @antonioguterres to discuss the shocking attack on the UN Peacekeeping Mission in Democratic Republic of Congo, in which 2 brave BSF personnel lost their lives. Urged quick investigations to bring the perpetrators to justice.”
Spoke to UNSG @antonioguterres to discuss the shocking attack on the UN Peacekeeping Mission in Democratic Republic of Congo, in which 2 brave BSF personnel lost their lives. Urged quick investigations to bring the perpetrators to justice.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 29, 2022
The Congo incident is not an aberration
Congo has been mired by tribal warfare among various identity groups. Its government has negligible control over a vast area of Congo. This is the reason why United Nations has sent a peacekeeping force in order to contain the insurgent groups and create an environment for talks. In May this year, as a part of the peacekeeping mission, India sent two BSF platoons to the region where the unfortunate incident occurred.
But, their unfortunate death and that too by the hands of locals may force India to withdraw forces from the mission. After all, India has never got its due credit regarding UN peacekeeping missions. Beginning from the war on Korean Peninsula, India has participated in 49 out of 71 peacekeeping missions of the United Nations.
India- Number 1 contributor to peacekeeping
In terms of overall contribution, no country has sent more of its personnel than India on these missions. Up until now, we have sent 2,53,000 Indians for the purpose of creating peaceful environments in the region where seeing human flesh is the norm. Currently, out of 72,930 total peacekeepers, 5,500 of them are Indian troops.
Not only this, through peacekeeping missions, India has shown the world how gender equality is achieved. In 2007, India became the first country in the world to send a women-only contingent to the peacekeeping mission in Liberia. These women also inspired the local Liberian women to join security forces as well.
India has shown the way
Apart from providing security, India has been sending humanitarian aid to those places where its troops were in demand for maintaining a peaceful atmosphere. Moreover, India has been doing all of this largely at its own expense.
Characteristically, United Nations has been reluctant to even pay India its dues. In 2019, United Nations owed the highest debt to India at 38 million dollars, followed by Rwanda, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Moreover, India has not even got its due credit for its contribution to the mission. In spite of India contributing the largest number of troops to the mission, the UN prefers non-Indian faces for advertising the successes of the peacekeeping mission.
Reforms need to be implemented
For the last 7 decades, the UN has been a thankless organization for India and other countries which were not a part of the Western Bloc. This is one of the reasons why the UN is losing its relevance in the wake of India’s rise as leader of the erstwhile underdeveloped world.
Nevertheless, India has not moved back on its resolve to make the world a better place. But, it can’t continue forever, especially when efforts reach to the point of diminishing returns.
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