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  • 24 October, 2022

  • 6 Min Read

UN’s 77th Anniversary

UN’s 77th Anniversary

The world recently celebrated the 77th anniversary of the United Nations (UN) on October 24, 2022.

About United Nations

  • The United Nations (UN) is an international organisation that was established in 1945. It currently has 193 member countries.
  • Its mission and work are guided by the goals and principles outlined in its founding Charter, which are carried out by its various organs and specialised agencies.
  • Maintaining international peace and security, protecting human rights, delivering humanitarian aid, promoting sustainable development, and upholding international law are among its activities.


  • The International Peace Conference was held in The Hague in 1899 to develop instruments for peacefully resolving crises, preventing wars, and codifying rules of warfare.
  • It ratified the Pacific Settlement of International Disputes Convention and established the Permanent Court of Arbitration, which began operations in 1902. This court served as the forerunner to the United Nations International Court of Justice.
  • The League of Nations was the forerunner of the United Nations, an organisation conceived in the aftermath of World War I and established in 1919 under the Treaty of Versailles "to promote international cooperation and to achieve peace and security."
  • International Organization Conference of the United Nations (1945).
  • Representatives from 50 countries attended a conference in San Francisco (USA) and signed the United Nations Charter.
  • The United Nations Charter of 1945 is the organization's founding treaty as an intergovernmental organisation.

Components: All 6 were established in 1945 when the UN was founded.

Funds and Programmes:

  • United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
  • United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
  • United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat)
  • World Food Programme (WFP).

Specialized Agencies:

  • Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
  • International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)
  • International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)
  • International Labour Organization (ILO)
  • IMF
  • World Bank
  • International Maritime Organization (IMO).
  • International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
  • United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)
  • World Health Organization (WHO.
  • United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)
  • United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
  • United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP

What have the UN's contributions been thus far?

Increase in UN membership:

  • Following decolonization in the 1960s, the UN membership more than doubled from about 50 to 100.


  • The United Nations took the lead in decolonization in 1960, assisting around 80 colonies in gaining their independence.

Participation in Civil Society:

  • The United Nations is no longer just an organisation of nations; with the passage of time, more and more UN bodies have begun to engage with people within nations, experts, intellectuals, and the media.

Better Nutrition:

  • In comparison to the League of Nations, the UN has been able to sustain itself until now, which is an accomplishment.


  • The United Nations has successfully averted World War III.

What are the United Nations' major setbacks?

  • Arm Races and Cold War: Although World War III was successfully avoided, violence, arm races, nuclear races, and cold wars continue to occur among nations.
  • Power Suppressing Principles: The world body is still seeing a battle between 'principle' and 'power.'
  • While the UN represents the hopes of a peaceful and just world, the most powerful states are favoured by granting them commanding heights over international politics through the undemocratic instruments of veto power and permanent seats on the UN Security Council (UNSC).
  • The United Nations has been unable to present itself as a multipolar and multilateral organisation.
  • The UN had 5 permanent members with a total of 51 members when it was formed; it now has 193 members, but permanent members in the UN General Assembly are still 5.
  • Holistic Growth Laggard: The organisation had been unable to keep up with the increasing globalisation.
  • The United Nations has been a laggard in overall development; no institutional arrangement exists to deal specifically with pandemics or new technologies such as artificial intelligence.

What is India's Role in the United Nations?

  • India and the United Nations:
  • India is a founding member of the United Nations.
  • India has been an active participant in all UN initiatives, including the Millennium Development Goals, Sustainable Development Goals, and various UN summits, including those on climate change, since its independence and even before that.
  • Maintaining peace: In terms of the UN's peacekeeping mandate, India has done quite well in maintaining peaceful and friendly relations with the majority of nations.

UN Security Council and India:

  • India was elected as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for a two-year term beginning in January 2021.
  • India's non-permanent membership can be used to persuade other countries to join the fight against international terrorism.
  • Furthermore, India should strive to become a permanent member of the United Nations in the future.
  • Raising concerns about the need for reforms: India has recognised the urgent need for reforms in the UN, particularly at the UN Security Council, and has expressed concern about the issue.
  • Developing countries, including India, are now playing a larger role in both the global economy and politics.
  • However, these changes are not reflected in the UN Security Council, where all critical decisions are still made by the Security Council's veto-wielding permanent members.

The Way Forward

  • The United Nations has survived and thrived over the last 75 years, and there have certainly been incremental changes, but the time has come for the UN to change, and change for the better.
  • The UN Security Council urgently needs to undergo reforms; the sooner the better, the later the more obsolete.

Source: The Hindu

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