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Editorial of the Day (26th Feb): At the high table-On the Raisina Dialogue

Context: External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar described India as a “bridging power” at the Raisina Dialogue, emphasising its role in finding common ground through a “multi-vector” policy and acting as a “Vishwamitra” or friend to the world.

Participation and Focus Areas

  • G-20 Foreign Ministers Meeting Impact: The simultaneous G-20 meeting in Brazil resulted in no senior ministerial attendance from the P-5, major G-7, or BRICS-10 countries at the Raisina Dialogue.
  • European Diplomatic Outreach: A notable presence of ministers from Central and Eastern Europe, including all ministers of the Baltic-Nordic forum, highlighted India’s diplomatic efforts to foster trade and investment ties with this economically competitive region.
  • Global Conflicts Spotlight: The dialogue heavily focused on global conflicts, particularly the Russian war in Ukraine, with discussions on military and naval strategies against an aggressive China. However, the absence of representatives from Russia and China limited the balance of these conversations.

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Limitations and Areas of Improvement

  • Lack of Diverse Perspectives: The minimal participation from South East Asia, Latin America, and South Asian countries (except Nepal and Bhutan) restricted the diversity of viewpoints, particularly on the impacts of global conflicts on these regions.
  • Omission of Key Global Issues: The dialogue did not address significant issues such as the Israeli war in Gaza, narrowing the scope of discussions on global conflicts.
  • Exclusion of Civil Society and Internal Debates: The absence of non-governmental civil society organisations and avoidance of internal debates on democracy within India led to a limited perspective on the challenges facing democracies worldwide.

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