India has aligned its position with those of Eurasian states at the UN Security Council (UNSC) in order to avert the possibility of sanctions on Myanmar that could hurt its ongoing projects

The Indian divergence from the positions taken by western states at UNSC — the US, the UK, Estonia and France — is over the issue of imposing sanctions. India feels they will hurt the masses more than the military junta. Despite a bloody crackdown that has killed hundreds of civilians in Myanmar, India has avoided mentioning the word sanctions in its statements. Its position has been strengthened by the stand taken by Vietnam, which has taken over the Presidency of UNSC for the month of April.

Vietnam’s UN Permanent Representative Dang Dinh Quy said if the UNSC was to impose sanctions, Vietnam will comply “as long as it does not exert a negative impact on the lives of people and the humanitarian situation of the country concerned”. Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla made similar observations a fortnight back. “Don’t adopt tactics that seem reasonable if you are far away. Global sanctions will impact food security which will lead to inflation in Myanmar,” he had said.

With two veto wielding UNSC members — Russia and China — also ranged against sanctioning Myanmar, India will be able to preserve its interests that include a port being built by the Adani Group, a first-ever link to the North-East from the Bay of Bengal via Myanmar territory and transfers of military equipment.