Terrorism is the biggest problem before the world, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday.
Addressing the 12th BRICS summit, he asserted that there was a need to confront the countries that supported and sponsored terror. “We have to ensure that terrorists and those who support and sponsor terrorists should be held guilty and this problem is addressed in a collective manner”, he stated.
Mr. Modi acknowledged the Russian support to the BRICS Counter-Terrorism Strategy, which has acquired a definite shape. India would continue supporting this strategy, he said.
The BRICS summit is important, as it provides the Chinese and the Indian leadership an opportunity to exchange their thoughts on key priorities in the backdrop of the continued tension in eastern Ladakh. Both the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and BRICS have provided recent opportunities for exchange of ideas between the two sides.
In a speech that touched upon India’s global and regional concerns, Mr. Modi raised the issue of “credibility and effectiveness” of the institutions that were necessary for global governance. “It is India’s assessment that the United Nations Security Council requires reforms urgently. We expect support on this from our BRICS partners. Apart from the U.N., there are several international institutions that are not working according to the contemporary reality”.
India, which will begin a two-year stint as a non-permanent member at the Security Council next year, has been at the forefront of seeking expansion of permanent membership of the Council. That apart, it has also been raising the issue of making organisations such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) more effective, especially in the pandemic-hit world.
Referring to the post COVID-19 economic hardships of the world, Mr. Modi highlighted the importance of BRICS in that scenario. “BRICS countries will play a significant role in the recovery of the post COVID-19 world. 42 per cent of the world’s population resides in the BRICS countries and our economies are the major engines of the world. There is a lot of scope of increasing the trade among the BRICS countries”.
The Prime Minister introduced the “Aatmanirbhar Bharat” to the BRICS members. He pointed out that this was a campaign that amounted to be a “reform process”. “This campaign is based on the subject that a self-reliant and resilient India can become a force multiplier for the post COVID-19 world order”. A self-reliant India would make solid contribution to the “global value chains”, said Mr. Modi in Hindi.
The Prime Minister also addressed the issue of cooperation among the BRICS countries on the production of vaccine for COVID-19. India is in talks with Russia for the field trial of Sputnik V that is expected to begin in Uttar Pradesh from next week. India has led regional collaboration in South Asia for ensuring vaccine access to countries such as Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
President Xi Jinping, in his speech, also called for collaboration between Beijing and New Delhi.
Mr. Modi said, “Our production and ability to deliver the vaccine to millions will also help the humanity”. He urged for cooperation among the BRICS countries to defeat the pandemic.