India To Evacuate Nationals From Afghanistan As Condition Worsens
(This was originally posted in India Today by Manjeet Negi)
With the security situation worsening in Afghanistan due to the expansion of Taliban territories, India has decided to evacuate its nationals and officials from Kabul and other cities. “Plans have been worked out for the evacuation of our staff and other personnel present in Afghanistan in the cities of Kabul, Kandahar and Mazar-i-Sharif,” top government sources told India Today. Due to the ongoing security situation in the Afghan cities and hinterland, it is becoming untenable for embassies and consulates to operate. Afghan officials themselves have started fleeing the areas under their government control fearing Taliban attack, the sources said.
After US President Joe Biden announced in April that America would completely withdraw its troops from Afghan soil and global forces started interacting with the Taliban, the areas under the control of the outfit have expanded significantly. There have also been instances where Afghan security personnel has joined ranks with the Taliban.
On Monday, over 300 Afghan troops crossed into Tajikistan from the Badakhshan province. India had four consulates in Afghanistan along with the embassy in Kabul, which has military officials working as defence attachés and helping in the training of Afghanistan’s army and police forces It is not yet clear whether the entire staff will come back or some elements will remain there, but the evacuation plan is at advanced stages and maybe carried out in the near future.
The Indian consulates in Jalalabad and Hairat city stopped operations sometime ago while the operations in Kandahar and Mazar-i-Sharif are still on. India has been contributing in a big way to the development of Afghanistan post-2001 invasion by the United States after the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York.