India’s role on the international stage was moulded by history rather than by the pump and circumstances of war, As a separate entity of the British empire, India became a founder member of the League of Nations in the same way as Australia and Canada, and thus acquired a somewhat unique international status long before independence. During the days of the league when India’s interests were affected, such as in matters of trade or the position of Indians overseas the Indian delegation did not hesitate to make known its independent position, for what it was worth. Some Indian delegates were in demand for chairing meetings riddled with contention and controversy, because of their reputation for impartiality and talent for mediation.
These were the small beginnings of India’s later entry into the United Nations in 1945 again as a founder member before independence. The drafting of chapter IX and X of the UN Charter, which deals with international social and economic cooperation, was entrusted to a group that was presided over by an Indian. It is important however, to bear in mind that the Government of independent India had no part in the drafting of the UN charter, although it accepted the obligations contained there in. The UN was primarily the creation of three powers-the USA, UK and Russia.
The size, population, resources and potential of India lent it the weight of a medium power in the functioning of the United Nations. The fact that India was among the first nations to liberate itself from the imperialist domination through non-violent means endowed it with a moral obligation to work in and outside the UN for the independence of nations still under colonial rule. India has served on the security council for 10 years of 5 terms, on the Trusteeship council for 12 years or 4 terms, on the Economic and Social council for 21 years of 7 terms.
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