Peter Varghese sounds just like another mallu name doesn’t it, but it’s not. The Peter Noozhumuri Varghese I’m referring to is a key person; both for India and Australia.
A few facts about Peter:
- He was born in Africa(Kenya) in 1956
- B.A(Hons)from Queensland University
- Joined service in Department.of Foreign Affairs in 1979
- Since then has held key positions including International Adviser to the PM in 2003
- Married to Margaret O’Sullivan and has one Son
What makes him special are two facts, namely: he being the first Indian to be deputed from Australia as High Commissioner to India,and India currently on an economic boom. The thing that immediately comes to mind is the attacks on the Indian students a few months ago and more recently the Indian students being left high and dry after many colleges close down courses. And not to forget the issues with Uranium being refused, on what grounds, is anyone’s guess. Economic Pundits have been proclaiming India as the inevitable economic giant for years now, but the way it is positioned in another 10 years, India may finally arrive.
Now that half of the world seems disillusioned with China’s games at helping only themselves, their doubt able stance on Tibet, supporting Pakistan to spread terror in India and their own military enhancements; powers like the US are looking at redefining their relationship with India. Lets be honest, its all about vested interest’s.There is no free lunch and Hillary’s visit to India was a multi purpose one; some of it we can only guess, but some were obvious. China may well be the Frankenstein the US wants to ignore, and India the pacifist democracy with a booming economy. We have a lot to gain and so does the US, from the alliance.You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. But a line needs to be drawn. Now, Australia also wants a share of this giant pizza( I prefer that to pie). No harm in it, its business after all and we all have something to gain.
Now, what can Peter do for India and Australia is the big question. He has a tight rope walk ahead of him. He will be doubted as Pro-Australian in India and maybe the same in Australia,that of being soft towards his country of origin. Only time will tell as he may have been hit as soon as he assumes office, by the attacks’ issue as that is fresh in memory and will take predominance. He will need to be very tactful, as this has become a very sensitive issue for Indian’s. It will be safe to assume that his deputation is a wise move by Kevin Rudd to try and appease India. Whether it pays off or not remains to be seen. Its going to be one of the toughest deputations for Peter and more so because of the high hopes pinned on him from both sides. Lets wait and watch if his shoulders are strong enough to carry this responsibly and smoothly, or he will crumble under pressure. I read that he has a very sharp mind,hope that comes in handy. I will sign off by wishing Peter all the very best and that God gift him the strength, wisdom, courage and vision to see him through. Jai Ho