By Santo D. Banerjee
UNITED NATIONS (IDN) – India has been elected to several important subsidiary bodies of the 193-member UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) which is at the heart of the United Nations system to advance the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental.
It is the central platform for fostering debate and innovative thinking, forging consensus on ways forward, and coordinating efforts to achieve internationally agreed goals. It is also responsible for the follow-up to major UN conferences and summits.
India won an election to a crucial non-governmental organisation committee after gathering the highest number of votes besides getting elected by acclamation to other subsidiary bodies in five separate polls.
Following the elections on April 16, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin told the Press Trust of India that the “results reflect, yet again, the broad support and many friends India has amongst UN members”.
India topped the election to the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations – a standing committee of ECOSOC. Its main tasks include consideration of applications for consultative status and requests for reclassification submitted by NGOs and consideration of quadrennial reports submitted by NGOs in General and Special categories.
In one round of secret balloting, the Council elected Bahrain, China, India and Pakistan in the Asia-Pacific States category and Brazil, Cuba, Mexico and Nicaragua (Latin American and Caribbean States) to serve a four-year term beginning on January 1, 2019.
India got the highest number of votes (46), followed by Pakistan (43), Bahrain (40) and China 39. Iran lost the elections, obtaining only 27 votes. The Council elected by acclamation 11 other nations to serve the same four-year term.
India was also elected by acclamation to the Commission on Population and Development for a term beginning April 16, 2018 and expiring in 2021. The Commission assists the Council by arranging for studies and advising on population issues and trends, integrating population and development strategies and population and related development policies and programmes.
The Council elected India and Kuwait (Asia-Pacific States) by acclamation to the Commission for Social Development, filling outstanding seats for a four-year term beginning on the date of election.
The Commission advises ECOSOC on social policies of a general character and, in particular, on all matters in the social field not covered by the specialised inter-governmental agencies.
India was among the 17 members elected by acclamation to the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. The elected members will serve a three-year term beginning on January 1, 2019 and expiring on December 31, 2021. They include Algeria, Burkina Faso, Nigeria and Swaziland, Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Thailand, Belarus, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico Austria, France, Turkey and the United States.
The Commission acts as the principal policymaking body of the UN in the field of crime prevention and criminal justice. Its mandate includes improving international action to combat national and transnational crime and the efficiency and fairness of criminal justice administration systems.
Besides, India was among 14 nations elected by acclamation by the Council to the Executive Board of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS). The elected members will serve three-year terms beginning January 2019.
India along with 15 other UN member states was elected by acclamation to the Executive Board of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) for a three-year term beginning January 2019. [IDN-InDepthNews – 21 April 2018]
Photo: India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin (right) casting vote for election to the ECOSOC Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations. Credit: twitter.com/MIB_India
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