For decades, India has been an unfailing supporter of the Palestinians at the UN. Despite the improvement in relations between India and Israel since 1991, this policy has continued. But India’s current government, which has sought expanded ties with Israel, is now signaling that it might jettison this policy, reflecting major changes within Indian public opinion. Vijeta Uniyal writes:
[India’s] firm support for the “Palestinian Cause” at international forums prompted commentators to refer to India as the 23rd Arab state. Many commentators within India have kept questioning the wisdom of an unconditional support for the Palestinians. They have pointed out the absence of support on the part of the Arab states with regard to the issue of cross-border Islamist terrorism sponsored by neighboring Pakistan. They have also questioned the morality of supporting a cause that employs terrorist tactics to achieve political aims—as thousands of Indians get slaughtered by terrorists year after year. With Islamic State now recruiting in the Indian subcontinent, the calls for a tough stand against global terrorism have grown stronger at home. . . .
The political base that elected Prime Minister Modi to the office is overwhelmingly supportive of Israel. During the recent Gaza conflict, Indians youth showed unprecedented support for Israel. At the height of the conflict the hash-tag “IndiawithIsrael” was trending prominently on social media. On August 16, the city of Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) witnessed a 20,000-strong rally in support of Israel.