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Monday, September 27, 2021

India has to explore an independent and meaningful role in the region: Deve Gowda on Afghan crisis

In his statement at the All Party Meeting on Afghanistan, Deve Gowda said, India, being part of the international community- that had contributed to the democratic hope of Afghanistan, has to reflect as to why such a thing happened.

By: PTI | Bengaluru |
August 27, 2021 11:42:31 am
Deve GowdaH D Deve Gowda

Terming the situation in Afghanistan as “extremely complex”, Former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda on Thursday said that India has to explore an independent and meaningful role in the region, instead of playing part roles set by other nations.

The veteran politician also said that if India wants to play a bigger role on the world stage, “we should do the right things in our own country.”

“It is now well recognised that the situation in Afghanistan is extremely complex. Including the G7, no country appears to have a plan on how to go ahead in a country that has suddenly collapsed. All efforts made there in the last 20 years have come to nothing,” Gowda said.

In his statement at the All Party Meeting on Afghanistan, he said, India, being part of the international community- that had contributed to the democratic hope of Afghanistan, has to reflect as to why such a thing happened.

“In this crisis, to secure India’s security and strategic interests is of course the priority. But India also has to realise that it has a larger humanitarian and statesmanly role to play. We are the only large democratic country in Afghanistan’s neighbourhood which is sure
of its founding principles,” he said.

Further stating that India has to explore an independent and meaningful role in the region instead of playing part roles set by other nations, the JD(S) supremo said this could be a big moment to fine tune foreign policy.

“Ultimately, peace and stability of the region is in India’s self-interest. There is a humanitarian, security, economic and democratic crisis in Afghanistan and when we formulate our approach, we should take all these aspects into consideration and decide with
equanimity.

Of all that we have read about Afghanistan in the last few days, there is very little clarity about the role the United Nations wishes to play in this situation. This tells us a lot about the world today,” he said.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar briefed the leaders during the all-party meet on the Afghan situation.

Noting that if India was to play a bigger role on the world stage and secure the nation’s multiple interests in the region, the “right things” should be done in the country, Gowda said, “We have to ensure that our most vulnerable regions, like Jammu and Kashmir, are handled properly. Democratic and constitutional aspirations there have to be addressed sincerely.”

“We have to also take care of our North-Eastern region. We have to work faithfully towards treating our entire population with the dignity that our Constitution guarantees them as citizens,” he said.

Implications for India will be huge if we do not urgently understand the importance of this, he said, adding that “Besides this, to invest hugely in developing an independent, peaceful and economic relationship with nations in our neighbourhood may be of greater
strategic value in the short and long run.”

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