NEW DELHI :
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said India’s approach to development partnerships was “mainly human-centric", contrasting it with other forms, which he said, forced countries into “dependence partnerships" giving rise to colonial rule and global power blocks.
In his speech at the virtual inauguration ceremony of the Mauritius Supreme Court building in Port Louis, Modi took a swipe at China saying: “India is making development partnerships that are marked by respect, diversity, care for the future, and sustainable development."
The Supreme Court building in Port Louis is part of the five projects under a $353 million special economic package extended by India in 2016. It is also the first India-assisted infrastructure project in the Mauritian capital. With China aggressively stepping up efforts to woo India’s neighbours, New Delhi has focused on delivering promised assistance to its neighbours.
The inauguration of the Supreme Court building comes amid military tensions between India and China along the common border.
“For India, the most fundamental principle in development cooperation is respecting our partners. This sharing of development lessons is our only motivation. That is why our development cooperation does not come with any conditions. It is not influenced by political or commercial considerations," Modi said.
The obvious contrast was with China whose ambitious ‘Belt and Road Initiative’ (BRI) was called out by India and other countries for burdening developing countries with unsustainable debt, propagating predatory lending practices, and imposing environmental costs.
“India’s approach to development is mainly human-centric. We want to work for the welfare of humanity. History has taught us that in the name of development partnerships, nations were forced into dependence partnerships. It gave rise to colonial and imperial rule. It gave rise to global power blocks, and humanity suffered," Modi added.
Mauritian Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth said: “India has accompanied Mauritius all along its journey towards socio-economic progress".