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Opinion: Was India’s UN Vote Against US and Israel Regarding Jerusalem a Right Move?

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By Pravin Mundkur

LEXINGTON, MA–Some Indian Immigrants, especially those who are now US Citizens, may have observed that India voted against the United States and Israel, with regard to the move by the US to recognize Jerusalem as essentially wholly part of Israel.

The question is, how do Indian Immigrants feel about this vote?

Pravin Mundkur​

The Indian Immigrant Community in the USA is a relatively new  community — most of us arriving in the USA only after 1965 and the passage of the “Civil Rights Act” by the Johnson Administration. Many of us, first generation immigrants, have felt welcomed in the USA and have managed to establish ourselves as a growing and successful community here. As such, we are always looking for stronger relationships between the US and India – the country of our origin and, for many, the country of our heart.  We tend to look for, and cheer, every positive step in this relationship. And we are dismayed if this takes any backward step.

India is on the verge of establishing a growing and favorable relationship with the United States and Israel. A relationship with the US has been troubled at times. In this, India can benefit greatly, as the US and Israel both have advanced Defense Technologies (among many other technologies) — technologies that India is trying hard to establish rapidly in India. With the threat from China, India needs all the help it can get.

On the counterbalance, India also has a relationship with the oil rich and Islamic Middle East — especially Saudi Arabia and Iran.  With Iran especially, India is working on getting a route to transport supplies to Afghanistan, and also to establish a lower cost route to trade with Russia and Europe.

While neither Saudi Arabia nor Iran have been propagating a “kinder and gentler” Islam, India has a sensitive relationship. For the longer term, India needs to develop a vision for its own Islamic population that is clear and distinct from that of Middle East. She needs to promote a vision that permits this Islamic population (as well as the majority Hindu, and Sikhs and Christians) to integrate well with the rest and to advance to a unified thinking suitable for the future of a nation. It does not need to antagonize Muslims, nor does it need to pitch strongly for them — unless they unequivocally support India on sensitive topics such as Kashmir or other topics.

In this situation, it appears that smartest vote for India would have been to simply stand aside and abstain. No need to involve in another hot issue. Jerusalem is far from India, but near and dear to Israel.

(Pravin Mundkur has been active in the Indian-American community. He holds a B.Tech for IIT, Powai, and an MS and MBA, from UC, Berkley, California. He is currently working on a BlockChain startup with his son Shiv Mundkur.)



  1. Comments to Pravin’s thoughts
    The thoughts coming from Indian Americans in USA — most of them would be that India should have abstained or voted with USA
    Indian Americans in USA are mostly professionals
    There are many Indians who work in Middle East abd tgeif livelihood depends on their work
    There are also many Moslems here and abroad who may feel otherwise of feel good for what was voted against USA resolution
    in India Kashmir and opposition parties may have caused big protests etc If the vote was with USA so for us living away from reality tough to say what us right
    India as against many countries is helping USA in terms of help to Afghanistan and spiritually staying with the founding fathers dreams of democracy
    Israel abd USA have best friends in India so this un redolution may not make more impact
    On the contrary countries who opposed the resolution will further guide advice etc to Palestine abd isresl to move forward with positive thoughts
    People should live Free and enjoy their spirit rather than race religion boundaries etc
    Any how Pravin wrote good comments

  2. Many of us who migrated to the United States in the 60’s and the 70’s have learnt one important thing about politics. ” All politics are local”. India did what it had to do based on where it is located and the local politics.


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