India may be poised to play a leading role in the Commonwealth and take over the mantle from the United Kingdom in a way, as it hopes to set up in the country a secretariat of the grouping of former British colonies.

Prince Charles discussed with his interlocutors during his visit to the country last week the idea of a bigger role for India in the 52-member grouping owing to its benign and non-interfering approach as well as track record, people aware of the matter told ET. A Commonwealth secretariat in India might be on the cards in the future, said one of the persons, who did not wish to be identified.

Experts said that a bigger role in the Commonwealth would be particularly appealing to India because China is not a member of the grouping, unlike many other international forums where China tries to dominate the agenda. However, they said, India needs to guard against Pakistan, which is a member of the Commonwealth and may seek to play the spoilsport at the…

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