As is commonly known, peacekeeping by the United Nations is an instrument developed by the organization to help countries facing conflict with the motive to create conditions for everlasting peace.
Peacekeepers ” which include soldiers, policemen, & even civilians “monitor and observe peace processes in post-conflict areas and assist ex-combatants in implementing the peace agreements they may have signed. These peacekeepers are often referred to as Blue BeretsÂ orÂ Blue HelmetsÂ because of their light blue berets or helmets.
India has actively played a role in the United Nations Peacekeeping missions. As a fact, India has been the largest troop contributor to these missions since its inception in 1948. India has taken part in 43 Peacekeeping missions with a contribution of over 180,000 troops and a considerable number of police personnel as well. As of 31st August 2016, India was the 2nd highest contributor of the year with a total of 7,471 personnel (6,507 troops, 899 police personnel & 65 military experts). Recently Indian Peacekeepers were lauded by the UN for their efforts in preventing carnage in the south Sudan conflict which resulted in the death of two of our soldiers. The first all women contingent in a Peacekeeping mission, a Formed Police Unit, was also provided by India & deployed in 2007 to the UN Operation in Liberia.
India has contributed ever since the mission in Korea in 1950-54. One mission where India”™s contribution was highly instrumental was in Congo during 1960-64 where 39 of our personnel laid down their lives. Capt GS Salaria was posthumously awarded the Param vir Chakra for action in Katanga, Southern Congo. India has also contributed $5 million to the United Nations Peace building Fund.
India is currently involved in numerous missions like in Lebanon, Sudan, Ivory Coast, etc. Prime Minister Modi has often said that India is a heavy contributor to UN Peacekeeping Missions and for a country like ours which believes & acts for universal peace, a place on the United Nations Security Council is indisputable. We have had our soldiers lay down their lives in foreign nations fighting foreign entities, and we will continue to support these missions with all our strength.
Hats off to our soldiers, policemen & civilian personnel who have served and continue to serve in such harsh & dangerous conditions.