Peace preserves and promotes life; war destroys and devastates it. Peace is from Allah and war from Satan. War is resorted to as a means of solving problems; but on the contrary, it enhances and complicates problems. This can be seen in Russia’s imposed war on Ukraine.

In this respect Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s bold advice to Putin on the sidelines of the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) held in Samarqand must be appreciated by the whole world. Mr. Modi told Mr. Putin, “Today’s era is not of war.” He stressed the need of finding ways to address the pressing problems of global food and energy security crisis. It was a bold advice to mellow down the megalomania of Putin which has brought the world to the brink of a world war. Besides, the war has affected the whole world and given rise to tensions, military expeditions and inflation. In this respect, India’s efforts to normalise its relations with its stronger neighbour China are important. Therefore, it is in our interest that we adopt the policy of conflict resolution and reconciliation. It is also in the interest of China, however strong it may be, and also in the interest of the whole world.

Seven months into Ukraine invasion, Russia is facing reverses and it is clearly on the back foot. The smaller and weaker Ukraine has inflicted heavy casualties on stronger Russia, which three decades back was a challenger to the US. Ukrainian president Zelensky claimed on September 12 that within 12 days his forces had retaken about 6,000 sq. kms. territory. No doubt the liberal military aid from western countries helped Ukraine a lot. But the courage and valour of Zelensky and the solid support of his people definitely played a significant role. The whole world salutes the spirit of Ukrainians. It assures smaller nations that courage and self-confidence play a major role in safeguarding freedom and territorial integrity of a country.

In this war about 6,000 Ukrainian civilians lost their lives. About 13 million Ukrainians are displaced, 9000 Ukrainian troops were killed and thousands rendered injured. Russia also had to pay a heavy price for its misadventure. According to US estimates, 70,000 to 90,000 Russian troops were killed or wounded. Ukraine’s cost of destruction is estimated to be $113 billion, while the cost of recovery needs $750 billion.

The whole world has to willingly or unwillingly share this burden. Therefore, mankind’s welfare lies in peace and reconciliation and never in war and conflict. People of the world, come let us join hands and build human society on faith in God, moral sense and human brotherhood.

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