NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday emphasized on quid pro quo when it comes to relations with India’s neighbours on the Eastern and Western flank. Underlining unprecedented economic opportunity in rise of India and China, he asked both the countries to have mutual respect; whereas he asked Pakistan to move away from terror to have before dialogue could take place.
The Prime Minister was speaking at the inaugural address of the Raisina Dialogue 2017 setting tone of the Government’s flagship geopolitical brain storming event in Delhi that will see attendance 0f 490 representatives of 69 countries. The dialogue is modeled on Singapore’s Shangri La Dialogue.
“I see the rise of India and China as an unprecedented economic opportunity for our two countries, and for the whole world,” PM Modi told the gathering, while admitting that the rising ambitions were “visible stress points”.
India has been striving to reason with China on several issues of utmost national importance – entry to the nuclear trade regulatory group Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and proscribing of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) Chief Masood Azhar at the UN Security Council Committee. In both the cases Beijing has been unrelenting in its blocking of India’s aspirations. New Delhi has also responded by using the presence of Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama to needle Beijing. The move has not gone unnoticed in the Eastern neighbour that termed it as “shortsighted”.
The Chinese media too, has taken a belligerent stance, warning India against using what it called the "Dalai Lama card" and said New Delhi was "shortsighted".
Obliquely hinting at the unaccommodating stance of Beijing towards New Delhi’s interests, Modi said: “At the same time, it not unnatural for two large neighbouring powers to have some differences. In the management of our relationship, and for peace and progress in the reigon both our countries need to show sensitivity and respect for each other's core concerns and interests."
For Pakistan, with whom India has been embroiled in a bitter wrangling for better part of the year 2016 over terror attacks, Prime Minister Modi gave a tough message – walk away from terror.
“India alone cannot walk the path of peace. It also has to be Pakistan's journey to make. Pakistan must walk away from terror if it wants to walk towards dialogue with India,” the Prime Minister said. They Narendra Modi government has opted for a muscular foreign policy when it came to Pakistan’s unheeding to India’s call for abandoning terrorism.
The PM said that India’s strategic intent has been shaped by our civilization ethos- realism, co-existence, cooperation and partnership.
This year’s attendees will include former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.