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Mahendra Pande asked: How India views the coming of Muslim Brotherhood into power? Would it give rise to Islamic extremism?

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  • P.K. Pradhan replies: Ever since the popular protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak started in Egypt, India has expressed its support for the will of the people of Egypt. Now India is ready to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Cairo and has shown no hesitation in doing so. After the elections, India welcomed the verdict of the people of Egypt and congratulated its leader Mohamed Morsi. India’s External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna visited Cairo in March 2012 and chaired the sixth India-Egypt joint commission meeting. He met the top leadership of the country including the Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi. During Krishna’s visit, India and Egypt signed four documents on cooperation in the field of environment protection, cultural exchange, agriculture and standardisation. Both the countries have also identified areas, such as, trade & economic cooperation, science & technology, culture and information technology, to further strengthen their cooperation.

    It would be too early to predict the rise in Islamic extremism with the coming of Muslim Brotherhood to power. It is expected that Muslim Brotherhood will practice moderation and rather conduct itself as a responsible political party than an underground Islamist organisation. The party has promised to build a modern democratic state and is under pressure to satisfy both the conservative elements and the secular-minded sections of the Egyptian society. A lot depends upon the direction in which the party and the leadership would like to take the revolution.