Union Minister of State for External Affairs (MoS) Meenakashi Lekhi at the High-level Commemorative Meeting to mark the 60th Anniversary of the NAM in Serbia.
Union Minister of State for External Affairs (MoS) Meenakashi Lekhi at the High-level Commemorative Meeting to mark the 60th Anniversary of the NAM in Serbia.

Meenakashi Lekhi takes dig at Pakistan, says some NAM members deliberately take up divisive issues

ANI | Updated: Oct 11, 2021 23:34 IST


Belgrade [Serbia], October 11 (ANI): Union Minister of State for External Affairs (MoS) Meenakashi Lekhi on Monday took a veiled dig at Pakistan and said some NAM members deliberately take up divisive issues and use the platform for bilateral score-settling.
She was taking part in High-level Commemorative Meeting to mark the 60th Anniversary of the NAM in Serbia.
The minister said NAM has been effective in some areas but has increasingly become ineffective in certain other areas.
"We have spoken in one voice to defend our interests and those of developing countries. We have increasingly become ineffective in certain other areas particularly in tackling new and emerging challenges. This is primarily due to the tendencies of some NAM members to deliberately take up divisive issues or to use the NAM platform for bilateral score-settling, thereby creating division among us," Lekhi said.
"Such pursuance of partisan agenda rather than working towards strengthening our collective effort has resulted in an increasing number of members having to disassociate themselves from NAM positions. At another level, we are splitting ourselves into camps, reflecting geopolitical divides, outside NAM rather than strengthening NAM itself to become an independent pillar and an influential voice in the international forums," she added.
Referring to Afghanistan, she said its soil should not be used to mount terror attacks against any country.
"Following recent developments in Afghanistan, it is absolutely imperative that the approach of the international community is guided by United Nations Security Council Resolution 2593 that was adopted under India's August presidency of UNSC. It has clearly reaffirmed that Afghanistan soil cannot be and should not be used to mount terror attacks against any country," the minister said
She also highlighted the COVID-19 pandemic and how India played an important role in curtailing the spread of the pandemic.
"The way in which the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc across the globe has exposed the inadequacies of multi-lateral systems in effectively responding to perhaps the biggest challenge of contemporary times. NAM with its diverse shared developmental experience and youthful and dynamic population has the potential to take the lead and be a force for global good.

"On our own part, we have been part of the solutions, rather than the disruptions. India has supplied more than 70 million doses of vaccines to 93 countries and two UN entities, including the UN Peace Keeping Force as our own domestic requirements, are going to come down by virtue of inoculating population with 94 crores (940 million) doses of vaccines," said Lekhi.
"We will be expanding our cooperation in the field of COVID-19 vaccines along with CoWin as an IT platform that has been made available to all or anyone who is seeking that support," she added.
She also shared her past association with the organisation. "This moment is almost like a deja vu moment personally for me. I can recall my time as a young volunteer from my college during the 80s for the NAM Youth exchange programme in Delhi University," she said.
She said over the decades, these core NAM principles have provided the potential and moral impetus for the decolonisation process leading to the independence of many of the countries represented in this room today.
"It brought to the fore an international culture of justice and peace and an emphasis on promoting mutual interest, solidarity and respect for national sovereignty," she said.
The minister also advised the grouping for honest introspection about the movement in order to ensure the continuing relevance and influence of NAM.
"While we reflect on past achievements, this is equally a time for honest introspection about our movement - what must we do to ensure the continuing relevance and influence of NAM on global outcomes. Whether it is achieving 2030 developmental targets, countering the scourge of terror, combating climate change or defeating the pandemic?" she said.
"Our founding leaders had envisaged the Non-Aligned Movement as a way to carve out autonomous space on the geopolitical landscape for the developing countries. We need to ensure that we stay committed to that cause so that we actually realise the aspirations of our people for socio-economic, scientific and technological developments," she added.
Lekhi also urged the organisation to revisit and revitalize the methodology of discussion and decision-making in NAM.
"It was created to pursue the interest of developing countries. This has been our strength but we risk becoming irrelevant if we do not check the divisive tendencies within our movement. We also need to revisit and revitalize our methodology of discussion and decision-making following arbitrary and non-criteria-based procedures will not hold us in good stead," she said.
"Whether we are willing to make compromises for the sake of our collective interest and for the sake of effectively addressing new global challenges like the pandemic, terrorism, climate change will finally determine whether or not NAM remains relevant in a fast-challenging world?" she added. (ANI)

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