The rise and rise of India at UN
WASHINGTON: India may have made elections at the United Nations and affiliated bodies look easy with its unassailable record of wins that grew by a count of one on Friday — a seat on the world body’s human rights council with the highest vote tally of all.
But such elections are anything but easy. Ask Russia, a permanent member of the UN Security Council. It lost its re-election bid to the same body in 2016. In the past three years, every country that contested an estimated 10 elections or thereabouts at the UN or related bodies has lost at least once, except two states, according to a UN official. India happens to be one of the two, winning every race it entered.
Even the five permanent members of the Security Council — the US, the UK, Russia, France and China — have tasted defeat at least once in recent years.
India won a three-year term on the UN Human Rights Council on Friday, retaining its winning streak while securing the maximum number of votes, 188 of the total of 197. “We choose our battles well,” said Syed Akbaruddin, India’s permanent representative to the UN. “Put in a lot of effort. Work seamlessly at all levels and across the globe. This enables us to garner support of our many friends all over the world.”
The most spectacular of Indian wins was the election of Dalveer Bhandari, for a second term, to the International Court of Justice in November 2017. Just months before, in April, India secured the election of Judge Neeru Chadha to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea. There was the election in 2016 of Aniruddha Rajput to the International Law Commission. India’s record of electoral victories at the UN is currently better than all the five permanent members.