Achieving influence in world affairs will depend on how well New Delhi overcomes key challenges
As the Russia-Ukraine crisis escalated earlier this year, India’s response to it generated a heated debate in Western capitals. New Delhi was accused of not supporting Ukraine and siding with the West as it refused to publicly name Russia as the aggressor. India’s external affairs minister S. Jaishankar responded to it frontally by arguing that India’s foreign policy is not about sitting on the fence just because it may not be agreeable to some other countries. “It means I am sitting on my ground," he said. Arguing that “Europe has to get out of the mindset that Europe’s problem is the world’s problem but the world’s problem is not Europe’s problem", Jaishankar made it clear that “I am one-fifth of the world’s population. I am today the 5th or 6th largest economy in the world… I feel I am entitled to have my own side. I am entitled to weigh my own interests, and make my own choices… There is no country in the world which disregards its interests."
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