NEW DELHI, June 19: India’s candidate for the post of UN Secretary General, Mr Shashi Tharoor, said that his nomination would not affect India’s chances at bagging a permanent seat in an expanded United Nations Security Council.
Mr Tharoor arrived in Delhi last night and today met officials in the external affairs ministry and political leaders. He met the Prime Minister in the evening to formulate a strategy. Emerging from his 30-minute meeting with the PM, Mr Tharoor said India has a reasonable chance for success in the race for the top UN job. “We would not have been in this race if we didn’t believe there is a reasonable prospect for success,” he told reporters.
Earlier, speaking to the media after an hour-long meeting with the CPI-M general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, and the Politburo member, Mr Sitaram Yechury, Mr Tharoor’s said India’s bid for a UNSC permanent post is part of the reform process that began in 1992. “For us, Secretary Generalship is a matter of immediate future whereas permanent membership is a long-term issue. And my candidature will not affect India’s chances at all,” he said.
On the stalled UN reforms issue, he said it was necessary to meet the challenges of the new political realities. “The present Security Council reflects the geo-political scenario of 1947 and not 2006,” he said.
Mr Tharoor said he addressed the CPI-M leaders’ questions on various aspects of his candidature. He said he believes his experience of working with the world body for the past 28 years would could come in handy during his campaign as he had functioned from the ground up and was well-versed with challenges of making the UN system work.