New Delhi: The upcoming fifth edition of the flagship seminar Raisina Dialogue will see domination by women with 40 per cent speakers where a wide range of subjects will be discussed with focus on geopolitics and geo-economics and is jointly organised by Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and Observer Research Foundation (ORF).
The three-day Dialogue from January 14 coming at the beginning of 2020 is expected to set the tone for India’s intensive diplomatic engagement this year.
In one of the largest gathering of the year, it will bring together 700 global participants from across 100 countries. While there are 80 speakers from Africa, for the first time in the history of the Dialogue, 40 per cent of the speakers is women. This will be a great opportunity for India to host the exchange of different views from international thinkers and leaders.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be present during the inaugural session. The gathering will discuss global issues and seek solutions in an effort to ensure universal stability. This year’s Dialogue is going to set the tone for India’s intensive diplomatic engagement this year.
There are going to be seven former Heads of State and Government, who will be sharing their views during the inaugural session on 2030 agenda, counter-terrorism, challenges facing the world related to globalisation, the role of technology in the modern world, and climate change.
According to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the theme this year is ‘Navigating the Alpha Century’, and there is a high level participation from 12 Foreign Ministers of Russia, Iran, Australia, Maldives, South Africa, Estonia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Latvia, Uzbekistan and EU.
Also, the Secretary General of the SCO and the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth are going to be attending the Dialogue. And, there will be the National Security Advisor of Afghanistan, the Deputy NSA of the US and several Minister of State including from Germany will also present their ideas. Almost 30 think-tanks from across the world will be attending the Dialogue either as a speaker or as a moderator will be presenting their views across different sessions.
While the corporate world is going to be represented by the world-renowned Indian American Dr Vivek Lall, Vice President for Strategy and Business Development, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, India’s first chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat will also be speaking in one of the sessions.
Foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar and Shashi Tharoor, Member of Parliament are among the speakers from India. On the sidelines of the Raisina Dialogue, Jaishankar is expected to have bilateral meetings with his counterparts.
Heads of government who will be engaging in the inaugural discussion include Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand, Hamid Karzai, former President of Afghanistan, Stephen Harper, former Prime Minister of Canada, Carl Bildt, former Prime Minister of Sweden, Anders Rasmussen, former Prime Minister of Denmark, Tshering Tobgay, former Prime Minister of Bhutan and Han Seung-soo, former Prime Minister of South Korea.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and the senior US officials including Deputy NSA and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Alice Wells will have bilaterals with their Indian counterparts.
While the visit of the Russian foreign minister is expected to discuss the current growing tensions in the Gulf region, where Russia too has major interests, the visit is also preparatory in nature as leaders of both countries are going to meet at least five times this year.