Apart from Pakistan and China, all the immediate neighbours of Afghanistan attended the meeting and unanimously approved the joint ministerial statement.
New Delhi: For a long, an impression was given by its detractors that New Delhi has been 'passive' in formulating its strategies on Afghanistan, but on Wednesday, the vintage Modi Government was in full steam action and scored 'major strategic and diplomatic success'.
"The Dialogue exceeded our expectations. The NSAs easily arrived at a complete consensus, which enabled us to issue the joint Delhi Declaration," said a key source on the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan.
Presided over by NSA Ajit Doval, trusted foreign policy aide of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the deliberations were third in the format. The two previous ones – 2018 and 2019 – were hosted by Iran.
"There was an extraordinary degree of convergence on the assessments of the situation in Afghanistan and the principal challenges in Afghanistan and the region. These included the security situation, heightened risk of terrorism and the impending humanitarian crisis," the informed source told 'Organiser'.
The Delhi Declaration would go as a big setback to those South Asian and regional players who presumed they had 'primacy' in deciding the fate of Afghanistan.
The Declaration was firm that there should be "non-interference in internal affairs" of Afghanistan.
It expressed deep concern over the suffering of the people of Afghanistan arising from the security situation in Afghanistan and condemned the terrorist attacks in Kunduz, Kandahar and Kabul.
The Declaration also emphasised that "Afghanistan's territory should not be used for sheltering, training, planning or financing any terrorist acts".
All these have certainly all the potential to unnerve one or two regional players – who for long perhaps have been making all sorts of plans to 'abuse' land, territories and foot soldiers in Afghanistan vis-a-vis the sinister designs.
There was yet another important takeaway from the Nov 10 meeting, and it was "stressed that no one should boycott the consultation process due to bilateral agendas".
For the first time, all Central Asian countries, not just Afghanistan's immediate land neighbours, participated in this format of deliberations.
The NSAs appreciated India's timely and efficient organisation of this Dialogue and reiterated the need to continue regular consultations among regional countries in this format.
Later in the day, NSA Ajit Doval had bilateral meetings with his counterparts from Russia, Kazakhstan and Iran. These were substantive meetings and reflected the personal chemistry of NSA with his counterparts.
The source said some of the focus issues discussed with Russia were future high-level exchanges, defence cooperation, and deepening interaction between the NSCs.
With Kazakhstan, besides Afghanistan, there were discussions on enhancing connectivity and trading routes between the two countries.
Importantly, in the meeting with Iran, bilateral trade and the current state of relations were discussed.
"Iran having hosted the previous two NSA-level meetings, discussions on how to carry forward this process also took place," the source said.
In his opening remarks earlier kick-starting the meeting, Mr Doval had made a clarion call that this is the most appropriate "time for close consultation".
Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, Nikolai P. Patrushev and Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani¸ Secretary, Supreme National Security Council of Iran, attended the meet. Other countries were Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Iranian top representative, Ali Shamkhani's visit to India is considered significant from the India-Iran perspective as well.
Observers say Shamkhani came to India amid an increased Iranian activity regarding Afghanistan.
Iran last month hosted a meeting of the foreign ministers of countries bordering Afghanistan.
The foreign ministers of Iran, China, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Russia approved a joint ministerial statement.