Book Discussion: India and the Global South: Prospects and Challenges

by Diplomatist Bureau - 10 May, 2024, 12:00 99 Views 0 Comment

On the 8th of May at IIC, New Delhi, an informative discourse unfolded at a book discussion centered around “India and the Global South: Prospects and Challenges,” edited by Ambassador Surendra Kumar. Chaired by Ambassador Shayam Saran, President of the India International Centre (IIC), the discussion brought together a distinguished panel comprising Dr. Rajiv Kumar, former Vice Chairman of Niti Aayog; Ambassador Lakshmi Puri, former Ambassador and Founding Deputy Executive Director of UN WOMEN; Shri T.K Arun, former Resident Editor of The Economic Times, and Ambassador Surendra Kumar himself, Founding President of IAFA.

This book, curated with meticulous attention, features contributions from a dozen eminent experts, including luminaries like Dr. Shashi Tharoor, Ambassador Shivshankar Menon, Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Ambassador Kanwal Sibal, Dr. Seshadri Chari, and Professor C. Raja Mohan. Its profound insights render it indispensable for scholars, policymakers, and anyone intrigued by the complexities of international relations and India’s burgeoning global influence.

Central to the discussion was the recognition of the Global South as a formidable force in the global arena.

The Chair summarised the discussion by saying that, “While there may be doubts about its (Global South) coherence and distinct identity, enough people, both from the North and the South, recognise its existence. Notably, the emergence of key economies like Indonesia, India, Brazil, and South Africa leading four summits underscores its importance. It’s crucial that these leading emerging economies drive the transition from being rule-takers to rule-makers, as highlighted in the recent G20 summit agenda.”

Regarding India’s role, the Chair highlighted that it’s essential to understand that our influence lies not just in economic metrics but in setting examples. While we may not become the third-largest economy imminently, our developmental pathway serves as a model for other developing nations. Unlike the energy and resource-intensive paths of industrialized countries and even China, India has the opportunity to pioneer a more sustainable trajectory.

Domestic policies directly contribute to this, but our impact extends globally. However, we still lack the capacity to actively participate in crucial global negotiations. Despite our intellectual capabilities, India remains noticeably absent from many discussions. It’s imperative to enhance our capacity and become more engaged in these negotiations across various sectors.

This book serves as a clarion call for India to embrace its pivotal role in shaping the future of the Global South. As we navigate the intricacies of international relations, it is incumbent upon India to not only lead by example but also actively contribute to global discourse and decision-making. With concerted efforts to enhance capacity and foster proactive engagement, India can truly emerge as a beacon of progress and a driving force in shaping a more equitable and sustainable world order.


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