India refuses to back the Chinese BRI project in SCO summit

Shanghai, China:

The 18th Shanghai Co-operation Organisation (SCO) summit in Qingdao witnessed India’s refusal towards a high profile Chinese project in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) in India. Except India, all other seven members of SCO supported the project which is part of Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

In the period earlier, PM Narendra Modi had agreed to India’s support to the connectivity projects that are inclusive, transparent and respect territorial sovereignty. Also mentioned that India till date has maintained CPEC (part of BRI initiatives) for very long,  although it violates territorial integrity.

Further, he had said, ” Physical and digital connectivity is changing the definition of geography. Therefore connectivity with our neighbours and in the SCO region is India’s priority.

It is understood that the document relating to the high profile Chinese project in PoK, the only 17 paged joint document was released in the end of the 18th SCO summit, before Modi gave any plenary promises to support the connectivity projects.

In the SCO summit on 9th of this month,  Modi gave new acronym to the word ‘Secure’ which he expects to be followed by the SCO. S- Security of citizens,  E- Economic development, C- Connecting the region, U- Uniting the people,  R- Respect among nations and E- Environmental protection.

SCO was found at a summit in Shanghai in 2001 by the President of Russia, China, Kyrgyz Republic,  Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.  India and Pakistan became it’s members last year and PM Modi is the first one to attend it over the years. Modi promised full cooperation overall saying, “We should together set a goal for the 25th SCO summit. We should work together as a committee. India is committed to extend full co-operation to a successful outcome of the summit.”

Vijay Gokhale, the foreign secretary of India said on Sunday that India’s position on the BRI is spelt out, that “India supports all the connectivity initiatives but they should be keeping in mind territorial sovereignty, integrity along with viability and sustainability in all areas.”