India firm on its neutral stance: PM on Russia-Ukraine war
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said that India's strong independent position in the midst of the Russia-Ukraine conflict has allowed it to prioritize its national interests without succumbing to global pressure. He made the remarks while addressing the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) workers, MPs, and MLAs on the occasion of the 42nd foundation day of the party.
Why does this story matter?
India's stance towards Russia has been the subject of global scrutiny and debate as India has not condemned Russian aggression in Ukraine but has instead called for a ceasefire. Notably, India condemned the killing of civilians in Bucha, Ukraine on Tuesday at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) while supporting requests for an impartial inquiry. However, it did not directly mention Russia.
India has kept its national interests at the forefront: PM
Speaking about the Russia-Ukraine conflict, PM Modi said on Wednesday, "At a time when the world is divided into two blocs, India can take an independent stance for humanity. India has kept its national interests at the forefront." He also added that with a "rapidly changing global situation, new opportunities are coming up for India continuously."
Opposition backs government's stand
Meanwhile, the Opposition on Tuesday hailed Jawaharlal Nehru as the architect of the policy of non-alignment while supporting the Modi government's stance on the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Led by Congress, the Opposition said Nehru's policy has stood the test of time over seven decades.
India condemns Bucha civilian killings at UNSC
In related news, TS Tirumurti, India's permanent representative to the United Nations, described reports of civilian killings in Bucha as "deeply disturbing" during the UNSC meeting on Tuesday. "We unequivocally condemn these killings and support the call for an independent investigation," Tirumurti said while emphasizing that the situation hasn't improved since the last UNSC meeting on the subject.
What happened at Bucha?
In the last few days, gruesome images of mass graves and several bodies of civilians, some with their faces hidden behind hoods and their hands tied behind their backs, have emerged from Bucha, a town outside the capital Kyiv that was reclaimed by Ukrainian forces. Russia, facing global condemnation after the discovery of the bodies, has denied that its soldiers killed civilians.
India should play a mediating role: Congress MP Shashi Tharoor
Lauding the government's diplomacy, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Tuesday stated that it must take a "correct moral stand," adding that India pays "top dollars" for Russian defense products and India's gratitude for past UN vetoes on Kashmir was to the USSR, of which Ukraine was also a part. According to Tharoor, India should step up and play a mediating role in the conflict.Share this timeline