Modi decides against attending UN climate summit

  • Chetan Chauhan, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Sep 17, 2014 20:30 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will not be attending United Nations Climate Summit called by UN Secretary General BanKi moon as the government believes it was being held at the behest of rich nations to iron out its differences with the developing world on the new climate treaty to be readied by November this year.

The UN secretary general had invited all head of states including Modi for the summit but the Indian Prime Minister had opted out. And it was also aimed to tell United Nations that it cannot by-pass the climate convention and hold parallel negotiations with the head of states.

On Tuesday, Ban said that he would have like Modi to attend when asked why leaders of India, China and Russia not attending the summit. About 120 head of states including US President Barack Obama are attending the climate summit starting on September 23. Modi will, however, attending UN General Assembly during his US visit starting on September 26.

“We don’t approve the way UN Secretary General’s office has been used to push climate agenda by the rich countries,” said a senior government functionary. “There is lot of pressure on India and China to agree to proposed climate treaty but we are resisting jointly”.

A UN background note for the summit calls upon all countries to take responsible action for mitigating climate change with carbon emission levels almost touching the threshold level of 400 particles per million (PPM).

The government is sending environment minister Prakash Javadekar for the summit where he is expected to express India’s dismay at the proposed climate deal being discussed. “I will express India’s point of view strongly at the summit. We will not allow out interest to be compromised at any cost,” Javadekar said.

At the sidelines of the summit, India will also sign an agreement of phasing out of mercury called Minamata Convention.

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