Sunday, 31 May 2015

India's participation in United nations peacekeeping forces

united nations peacekeeping missions are for helping nations in maintaining  peace in their respective countries .many countries are part of united nations peace keeping mission and India is one among them .India has been actively participating in UN peace keeping missions  from a long time and even India 's work and dedication in UN peace keeping mission have been appreciated . India as  being the  prime contributor to UN in its peacekeeping operations   has suffered the highest number of casualties among participating countries in UN peace keeping missions , accounting for 157 of 3,263 lives lost, as on August 31, 2014.
The death toll of Indian soldiers during  UN peace keeping missions proved that India has been significantly contributing in UN peacekeeping efforts.the Total troops from the time India began participating in UN peace keeping missions in 1950 has reached to 1,80,000 troops which  is the largest number from any country contributed in UN mission.Nigeria comes next as  having suffered 142 casualties during UN peace keeping mission.
UN statistics reveal that the 3,000 odd casualties are largely due to accidents, illness and what it calls ‘malicious acts’, which broadly cove
rs death in different kinds of conflict situations ranging from war to civil unrest.
The UN peace keeping force comprises of large number of defence personnel along with police and even civilians.It is a noble cause and a great initiative by the united nations in uniting different nations of the world.
The peacekeeping operations started in 1948, and the death toll crossed the 1000 mark in 1993. It took fewer years for the the figure to cross 2000, which occurred in 2004. The figure crossed 3000 in 2012. These figures have to be placed in the context of the widening scale and complexity of UN operations over the years.

The UN had deployed 1,04,184 uniformed personnel from 128 countries in its peacekeeping operations as of September 30, 2014, of whom 89,111 were troops. India was  the third largest among all the countries participated in UN operation which  consisted of 8,108 personnel as on August 31, 2014, of which 7,053 were troops. Only Bangladesh and Pakistan  accounted for a larger UN contribution, with 8,778 and and 8,283 personnel respectively.
The UN Operation in the Congo accounted for the largest number of Indian causalities – 39, followed by UN Emergency Force operations, in which the death toll was 27. In Congo, two infantry brigades made up of 11,354 troops, 467 officers and 401 junior commissioned officers took part in the operations. Six Canberra bombers of the Indian Air Force had also formed part of the force. Captain G. S. Salaria, who died in Katanga, Southern Congo, was posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra.
Referring to the changing environment in which the peacekeeping operations are being carried out, Lt. Gen (retired) Satish Nambiar observed in an article commissioned by External Publicity Division of Ministry of External Affairs earlier this year, “UN peacekeepers are increasingly being sent to regions where civil-war type situations prevail; where there are no agreements, or if there are, these are rather tenuous, or broken without compunction; where the consent or cooperation of the belligerent parties cannot be relied upon; where constitutional authority does not exist in many cases, or if it does, has limited authority.”

according to him “India’s spontaneous and unreserved participation in UN peacekeeping operations over the years has been a clear demonstration of the country’s commitment to the objectives set out in the UN Charter. Not in terms of rhetoric and symbolism, but in real and practical terms, even to the extent of accepting casualties to personnel (about 150 fatalities to date). This commitment has been acknowledged by the international community, successive Secretaries General and the United Nations Secretariat,” .

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