India wants to see Myanmar emerge as a stable, democratic, federal union, the Ministry of External Affairs said

Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla who is on a two-day visit to Myanmar reaffirmed India’s strong and consistent support to the ASEAN initiative and expressed hope that progress would be made in a pragmatic and constructive manner, based on the five point consensus, the Ministry of External Affairs said on Thursday.

During his meeting with the Chairman, State Administrative Council and other senior representatives of the Southeast Asian country, the Foreign Secretary also emphasized India’s interest in seeing the country return to democracy at the earliest, the Ministry said.

The Foreign Secretary who reached Myanmar on December 22, also met members of civil society and political leaders, including the National League for Democracy, called for resolution of issues through dialogue.

He is also scheduled to meet Myanmar-based Ambassadors, and representatives of the UN, the MEA added.

Foreign Secretary Shringla also called for complete cessation of all violence, the MEA said in its statement.

The Foreign Secretary conveyed India’s continued humanitarian support for the people of Myanmar, the Ministry said.

In the context of Myanmar’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, he handed over one million doses of “Made in India” vaccines to the Myanmar Red Cross Society.

A part of this consignment would be utilized for communities living along Myanmar’s border with India. A grant of 10,000 tons of rice and wheat to Myanmar was also announced.

Foreign Secretary Shringla also expressed India's continued support for people-centric socio-economic developmental projects, including those along the India-Myanmar border areas, as well as India’s commitment for expeditious implementation of ongoing connectivity initiatives such as the Kaladan Multimodal Transit Transport Project and the Trilateral Highway, the Ministry said.

He also reiterated India’s commitment to continue with the projects under Rakhine State Development Programme and Border Area Development Programme for the benefit of the people of Myanmar, the MEA added.

According to the Ministry, the visit also provided an opportunity to raise matters relating to India’s security, especially in the light of the recent incident in Churachandpur district in southern Manipur.

Foreign Secretary Shringla stressed the need to put an end to any violence and maintain peace and stability in the border areas.

Both sides reiterated their commitment to ensure that their respective territories would not be allowed to be used for any activities inimical to the other, the MEA said.

India shares an approximately 1700-km long border with Myanmar. Any developments in that country have a direct impact on India’s bordering regions. Peace and stability in Myanmar remain of utmost importance to India, specifically to its North Eastern Region, the Ministry said.

As a democracy and close neighbour, India has been involved in the democratic transition process in Myanmar and in this context has worked with various stakeholders in developing capacities on democratic systems and practices.

India proposes to renew these efforts for Myanmar to emerge as a stable, democratic, federal union in accordance with the wishes of the people of Myanmar, the Ministry added.