India’s View on Palestine and The Muslim Factor at Home


India’s View on Palestine and The Muslim Factor at Home

India must be careful to ensure that its stand on Palestine is not seen as an extension of the domestic political controversy involving Muslims. In the past, the Israelis have dismissed India’s courtship of West Asia’s Islamic powers as the then ruling Congress Party’s sop to Muslim voters at home. Now, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s  stance on  Muslims, according to Sunanda K. Datta-Ray (senior journalist, columnist and author) “suggests that today’s ruling Bhartiya Janata Party can afford not to pander to the Indian Muslim lobby.”

Of course, New Delhi fully supported a sovereign Palestine in the recent United Nations General Assembly debate on the subject. Ruchira Kamboj, India’s UN representative, told the media: ‘In keeping with our long-standing position, we support the membership of Palestine at the UN and, therefore, we have voted in favour of this resolution.’  She  endorsed the view of the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, that ‘the State of Palestine is qualified for membership in the United Nations’, in accordance with Article 4 of its Charter and ‘should, therefore, be admitted’.

But Israel’s hysterical response to the UN move which the Biden administration’s veto aborted, warned that no solution is possible until attitudes have changed radically and there is some understanding of motives on both sides.

The BJP’s perception of India’s Muslim minority, writes Datta-Ray “is another imponderable.”

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