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India on Right Side of History: Experts Reject Ukrainian Deputy FM's 'Senseless' Remark

© AP Photo / Altaf QadriFirst Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine Emine Dzhaparova speaks at an event in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, April, 11, 2023.
First Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine Emine Dzhaparova speaks at an event in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, April, 11, 2023. - Sputnik India, 1920, 17.04.2023
While in New Delhi, Ukraine's Deputy Foreign Minister Emine Dzhaparova claimed that "India was on the wrong side of history" by maintaining close ties with Russia, its 'time-tested' partner.
Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Emine Dzhaparova's recent remarks on Indo-Russian relationship did not go well with the Indian expert community, as well as with the Indian diplomats.
Dr. Ajay Patnaik, a professor at the Centre for Russian and Central Asian Studies at India's premier institution for international relations, Jawaharlal Nehru University, went as far as to say that her statement had "no sense" and was mere rhetoric.
"The Ukrainian leader's remarks sounded like a slogan. What is the right side, what is the wrong side of history depends on who is saying it," the JNU academician told Sputnik on Monday.
According to him, the people who believe US hegemony should continue, the US domination should continue, the world should be unipolar or there should be unilateral actions, and there should be NATO expansion, they think they are on the right side of history.
But those who oppose it, he said, believe that the world is moving towards a multipolar world, or moving away from the hegemony of one single currency the dollar to many national currencies getting prominence, they think they are on the right side of history.
A G20 signage made from flowers is displayed at the main venue of the G20 financial conclave on the outskirts of Bengaluru, India, Friday, Feb. 24, 2023. - Sputnik India, 1920, 14.04.2023
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"If the view is the world should have more democratically run financial institutions like the IMF and the World Bank, if not find alternative institutions like the New Development Bank, they think they are on the right side of history as that is the future towards which the world is moving and if you don't go along with that you will be left behind by history," Patnaik opined.
Patnaik argued that Dzhaparova's statement shouldn't be given much importance because she is a leader of a country that is in the thick of a conflict. That's why she may call for all sorts of rhetoric to plead her nation's case and prove its point.
The New-Delhi-based geopolitical expert pointed out that India has good relations with both Ukraine and Russia and the South Asian nation has purchased Ukrainian goods in the past, including spare parts for its defense equipment.
However, India has had a very strong relationship with Russia for decades that it can't break. If New Delhi's trade with Moscow was nothing, its economic ties with Russia were nothing, then nobody would have expected India to speak with President Vladimir Putin and his government there.
"Whatever rhetoric the Ukrainian deputy Foreign Minister might have used, I don't think there was any sense in her statement. If India takes a hostile position to Russia, how can Western countries expect India to bring Moscow to the negotiating table for peace talks?" Patnaik asked.
Patnaik explained that New Delhi hasn't taken this stand because of convenience. Over the years, on global issues, India's dislike of unilateral actions in Iraq, Syria, Libya, and erstwhile Yugoslavia, these things have pushed the country much closer to Russia.
He asserted India has realized that there is a need for a multipolar world. Many countries are currently not members of SCO but want to join the grouping, while many others want to join BRICS.
"This is the future and if India is making these efforts, it is not on the wrong side of history, it is on the right side of history," the JNU professor summed up.

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Meanwhile, Lt Colonel JS Sodhi, an Indian Army veteran and the editor of the geopolitical news website, Global Strategic & Defence News, echoed similar sentiments.
"India is not on the wrong side of history, in fact, India has created history by having good relations with Russia and the West, as India has shown that a non-aligned and neutral foreign policy is the correct approach wherein a nation should keep its national-interests and national-security supreme," Lt Colonel JS Sodhi said.
The retired Indian Army officer noted that India has emerged as a global geopolitical leader by not succumbing to any pressures during the ongoing Ukraine conflict, and has done what suits India's national security and national interests.
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India has always maintained that any issue should be resolved through dialogue and diplomacy.
"This is the reason that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has had 5 phone conversations with President Putin and three phone calls with [Ukraine's] president Zelensky, which no other global leader has done so far, as India enjoys immense respect globally," Sodhi added.
The ex-Indian Army official elaborated that New Delhi doesn't forget time-tested and true friends and its continued relations with Russia are an apt and appropriate example of that.
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