India returns to the Security Council for the first time since 1992, also marking the first time that both China and India will be on the United Nations Security Council. China as one of the five permanent members and India as one of the 10 rotating non-permanent members are now part of the most prestigious and powerful UN entity, responsible for war, peacekeeping and sanctions. This will also be the first time the Security Council will witness the simultaneous presence of all BRIC and IBSA countries (India, Brazil and South Africa) and three of the four G4 countries.
Bolstered by an overwhelming 98 percent votes, SM Krishna, India’s external affairs minister, said, “our immediate priorities in the council will include peace and stability in our near and extended neighbourhood, including Afghanistan, the Middle East and Africa, counterterrorism, including the prevention of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to nonstate actors, and the strengthening UN peacekeeping,”
Over the last few years, the region north of India and west of China has seen considerable tensions, especially in the regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. While India is worried about the growing nexus between China and Pakistan, it will also have to tackle the rejuvenation of Afghanistan as troops pull out. Asian terrorism which has reared its ugly head in recent years is an active threat in the region and will require the might of both China and India. Additionally, the involvement of India in the UNSC will balance powers in Asia. As a growing economic and diplomatic power, China has been commanding an increasing influence over the region, analysts also feel India’s presence will not only be vital for Asian security but also for future energy and infrastructural developments.