India's calibrated diplomatic manoeuvre to generate consensus in Seoul via Tashkent for entry into the elite club of Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) on Thursday was thwarted by a group of countries led by China despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging Beijing to support the emerging consensus.
According to government sources, Brazil, Austria, New Zealand, Ireland and Turkey along with China resisted the entry of Non-NPT (Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty) members into NSG during the three-hour-long special session in the South Korean capital. Although some members came on board during the long deliberation, the session ended without arriving at consensus on New Delhi's bid which sources termed as 'consensus minus one' indicating China remains the only block.
Sources said the meeting would continue on Friday and India would try to give a last push. “Foreign Secretary S Jaishakar, who is camping in South Korean Capital, had held a meeting with Brazil delegation and India is trying to build consensus among the member-countries opposing its bid," Sources said, adding that India's bid was supported by a majority of the countries including US, UK, France, Mexico, Switzerland and Italy. France, UK and US had reiterated their support for India's entry into NSG.
Earlier, New Delhi's hope of clinching the membership was riding high when Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit in Tashkent on Thursday. Modi requested China to make a fair assessment of India's entry to NSG. Although, it is not known what Chinese side told Indian delegation during the meeting, MEA confirmed the meeting between the two leaders was 'devoted' to India's bid for NSG. “In fact the rest of the meeting was devoted to this issue. Modi urged China to make a fair and assessment of India's application and judge India on its own merit," MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said.