External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, who is at the centre of efforts to resolve the border crisis with China in eastern Ladakh, said on Monday peace and tranquility should be basis of relations with the neighbouring country. Speaking at Express E-Adda, he also cautioned that nationalism would be a dominating feature in a post-Covid world.
“India and China have had a difficult recent history. Practical issue is one of disengagement and de-escalation. Indian and Chinese leaders have had informal talks at Wuhan and in Chennai. The conversations were about strategic intentions and posture,” Jaishankar said.
Jaishankar further said India and China had a complex relationship and his responsibility was to steer it in the right direction. “Practical issue is one of disengagement and de-escalation. I am cognisant of all the challenges we have facing. We have problems left over from history,” he said.
The Foreign Minister also said one cannot be a rising power without having a rising economy. “Atmanirbhar Bharat is a policy effort to build national capacities, it doesn’t make India anti-global,” he said. On Covid-19, Jaishankar said the pandemic had raised issues of health security. “A post-Covid world will be more difficult, nations will become more self-centric, debates will become more aggravated and nationalism will be a dominating feature,” he said.
Rising from being a career diplomat to India’s Foreign Secretary to its External Affairs Minister, Jaishankar has had a ringside view of the twists and turns of India’s policy in the neighbourhood and beyond, the deepening of its ties with partners old and new, and the evolution of its rightful claim to a seat at the global high table.