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India NAM-es its pal, snubs US

Jun 30, 2007 06:26 AM IST India India

New Delhi: India has rejected US Secretary of Sate Condoleezza Rice’s advice to the Non Aligned Movement (NAM) and made it clear it won’t snap is ties with the alliance.

Speaking at a function in Washington on Wednesday, Rice said: NAM “has lost its meaning,” she said. “One is aligned not with the interests and power of one bloc or another but with the values of a common humanity.”

Indian leaders reacted to Rice’s statement sharply. “The US should mind its own business,” said CPI General Secretary A B Bardhan.

The UPA Government was also embarrassed and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee clarified India was committed to the NAM ideals and believed it was still relevant in a multi-polar world.

Defence analysts, too, criticised Rice. “Rice was undiplomatic in trying to deliver a speech which sounded preachy. I don’t think we would advise the US on how to develop its policies,” said K Subrahmanyam.

In fact, analysts like Subrahmanyam say India is actually practicing. India has strategic partnerships with western powers like the US and EU but also with Russia.

India wants better ties with western allies like Japan and South Korea but also with china. India is a part of regional groupings like IBSA (India-Brazil-South Africa Forum), the India-Russia-China trilateral and the East Asia Summit, all of which exclude the US.

India is open to joining a new grouping with China, Brazil, Mexico and South Africa and says its not ganging up with the US, Japan and Australia against China.