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What is India's role in SAARC?

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Quick Answer

India is one of the founding member nations of SAARC, or the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, and is the home of two regional centers within the organization, the SAARC Documentation Centre and the SAARC Disaster Management Centre. Additionally, according to the official SAARC website, India holds a permanent seat on the SAARC Board of Directors, and Indian representatives have twice served as secretary general of the organization.

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Full Answer

According to the International Democracy Watch, SAARC was founded by India and six other Southeast Asian nations in 1985. The organization was created to promote understanding and cooperation in a variety of fields between countries in the region. India has been a member of SAARC consistently since the organization's beginnings, and Indian representatives were heavily involved in drafting the charter that all the nations eventually signed.

India also frequently plays host to SAARC committee members when they meet for organizational summits. For example, the 1986 summit, in which the duties of the SAARC secretariat were revised and expanded, was held in Bangalore, India. In 2007, the 14th SAARC Summit was held in Delhi, India. This summit was notable because it marked the first time a new country was invited to become a member of SAARC when representatives from Afghanistan signed the charter.

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