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India’s election to the UNSC & it objectives for the world

India’s election to the UNSC & it objectives for the world

UPSC CSE Mains Syllabus: GS-2 Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.


  • India has been elected to the U.N. Security Council as a non-permanent member. This is a significant diplomatic victoryfor the country.
  • It has long been pushing for reforms at global institutions.
  • India was the only contestant for the Asia Pacific seat.
  • But the Indian foreign policy establishment took no chances as the election would be done by secret ballot at the UN General Assembly and two-thirds of the voteswere needed for victory.
  • India secured the seat with 184 votes in the 193-strong General Assembly.

India’s objectives:

  • India sought the support of member countries by highlighting its commitment to multilateralism and reforms.
  • India had launched a campaign brochure which highlighted its demand for transparency in mandates for UN peacekeeping missions and push for the India-led Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism, and called for joint efforts for UN reform and expansion of the Security Council.
  • A “new orientation for a reformed multilateral system” (NORMS) would be India’s overall objective during the two-year tenure that will begin next year.
  • Achieving India’s objectives would depend on how it will conduct diplomacyin the global body, build alliances and raise issues that go beyond the interests of the big five.
  • India has long been of the view that the structure of the UN Security Councildoesn’t reflect the realities of the 21st century.
  • It has also got increasing support from member countries for its push for reforms.

What are ‘non-permanent seats’ at the UNSC?

The UNSC is composed of 15 members:

five permanent members — China, France, Russian Federation, the United States, and the United Kingdom — and 10 non-permanent members who are elected by the General Assembly.

The non-permanent members are elected for two-year terms — so every year, the General Assembly elects five non-permanent members out of the total 10.


These 10 seats are distributed among the regions of the world:

  1. five seats for African and Asian countries
  2. one for Eastern European countries
  3. two for Latin American and Caribbean countries and
  4. two for Western European and Other Countries.

India begins its term in the beginning of 2021, and will hold the position until the end of 2022.



  • The five permanent members of the Security Council have resisted the attempts to reform UNSC.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic has already shaken up the global order and sharpened the rivalry between the U.S. and China.
  • It has also opened up fresh debates on strengthening multilateralismand multilateral institutions. 
  • In this context, the challenges before India are many.

Road ahead:

  • The Security Council is one of the most important multilateral decision-makingbodies where the contours of global geopolitics are often drawn.
  • India should avoid the temptation of taking sides at a time when the Security Council is getting more and more polarised.
  • To serve its interests and push for its agenda of multilateralism and reforms, India should adopt value-based positionsthat are not transactional, aspire for the leadership of the non-permanent members of the Council and be the voice of the weaker nations.

Source:” The Hindu“.


India’s election to the U.N. Security Council as a non-permanent member is a significant diplomatic victory for the country. With this can India achieve the objective of a multilateral world and UNSC reforms?