After years of intense diplomatic canvassing, India has won a non-permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) after a gap of 19 years. India needed 128 votes but secured 187 in the 192-member UN General Assembly, which met on Tuesday.
India was standing unopposed for the Asia seat after the only other contestant in this category, Kazakhstan, withdrew from the race in December last year.
Reacting to the development, Foreign Minister SM Krishna said, "This marks major shifts on world stage as well as the civil nuclear deal. The overwhelming support to this reflects expectations of international community from India."
Each non-permanent country stays on the council for two years, alongside the permanent powers: Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States, who have the right to veto any council resolution.
What New Delhi would be looking at now is a claim for a permanent seat when serious negotiations begin for expanding the Security Council next year.
Germany too made it to the Security Council. Had Germany lost, it would have been a setback for India because G-4, which wants the Security Council expansion, are all in UNSC now and can work together.
(With agencies input)