Institute Lecture & MEA Distinguished Lecture: The Role of the UN in the Contemporary World

Event Speaker: 
Ambassador Asoke K. Mukerji
Event Time: 
03:27 PM to 04:27 PM
Event Venue: 
Seminar Hall

The United Nations was conceptualized to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war during the height of the Second World War by a group of 26 nations, including India. The structures of global governance to meet this objective were created to secure this objective. The functioning of the United Nations is commonly looked at from the way its three main pillars have responded to the vision of its founders. While its socio-economic and human rights pillars have registered significant progress, the impact of its political pillar has not been uniformly successful, with more than 65 million people across the world today impacted by violent conflicts. What should be done to revitalize the political pillar of the United Nations? How can India, one of the original members of the United Nations, play a role in this context? These are the issues that need to be placed for a wider discussion in the public domain.”
About the Speaker: Ambassador Asoke K. Mukerji

Ambassador Asoke K. Mukerji is currently an elected member of the governing Council and Executive Committee of the United Service Institution of India (USI), which is India’s oldest think tank, and a member of the National Executive Committee of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).

He served in the Indian Foreign Service for more 37 years, before retiring from New York as India’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in December 2015. His tenure was marked by the remarkably swift implementation, within 75 days and with the co-sponsorship of 177 countries, of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's proposal for the UN to declare an International Day of Yoga. He headed the Indian negotiating team for the adoption of Agenda 2030 on Sustainable Development by the UN General Assembly.

Prior to this assignment, he was Special Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs responsible for International Organizations, International Cooperation in Counter Terrorism, Cyber Issues as well as Foreign Policy Planning and Review. He was among the first Indian diplomats to serve in the newly created World Trade Organization in Geneva between 1995-1998, and Chaired the WTO’s Committee on Specific Commitments in trade in services. He represented India in 11 international trade disputes at the WTO.

He has served as Ambassador of India to Kazakhstan, Deputy High Commissioner of India (with personal rank of Ambassador) to the United Kingdom, Deputy Chief of Mission to the Russian Federation and India’s first resident Charge d’affaires in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan. He has headed India’s largest consular post as Consul General Dubai. His other diplomatic assignments include Belgrade and Washington DC.

He writes and lectures regularly on India’s foreign policy. He has been a public speaker at the universities of Cambridge, Oxford, St Andrews, Columbia, Princeton, Harvard and Rochester. He has published 7 books. His latest book "India and the United Nations: 1945-2015 – a Photo Journey", was presented by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon during the 70th anniversary Summit of the United Nations in September 2015.