India says it will prioritize Hindus and Sikhs in Afghan visas

The Indian government said on Tuesday it would prioritize welcoming Hindus and Sikhs from Afghanistan – a movement that drew comparison...

The Indian government said on Tuesday it would prioritize welcoming Hindus and Sikhs from Afghanistan – a movement that drew comparisons with a litigation citizenship law 2019, promulgated under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, that discriminates against Muslims.

The country’s interior ministry said it would introduce “emergency visa”To allow Afghans to stay in India for six months. He did not say whether Muslims, who constitute the majority of those seeking to leave Afghanistan as the Taliban gained the upper hand, would also be considered.

“We are in constant contact with the leaders of the Sikh and Hindu communities in Kabul,” said S. Jaishankar, Indian Minister of Foreign Affairs, said on twitter. “Their well-being will receive our priority attention. “

This distinction has aroused condemnation from some corners.

“Shameful that the response of the Indian government is now to view the desperate Afghan refugees not as humans fleeing persecution and certain death, but in terms of whether or not they belong to the Muslim religion,” said Kavita Krishnan, an opposition politician, said on twitter.

India also drew criticism after many seats were left empty on an Air Force flight on Tuesday which evacuated Indian citizens and officials from the country’s embassy in Kabul.

Officials in New Delhi have indicated that the country will “Be ready”Afghans who have worked closely with the Indian government and its mission in Afghanistan. It is not clear whether their religious status would be a factor in this process.

A spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

India has previously granted longer visas to Afghans fleeing persecution, regardless of their religion. Many Afghans emigrated to India when the Taliban took power about two decades ago. Some have settled in New Delhi, where a shopping district popularly called “Little Kabul” comes alive every evening with stalls selling traditional food.

U.S. and Afghan officials say India’s big rival Pakistan allowed free movement of Taliban leaders, and that the country continues to serve as a safe haven where combatants and their families can receive medical care.

But experts say India is navigating cautiously in its dealings with the new Afghan rulers. Indian diplomats recently Make efforts engage with the Taliban in US-led talks in Doha, Qatar.

Some in India have urged their government to engage directly with the Taliban. Vivek Katju, former Indian Ambassador to Afghanistan, told The Wire media last week that the country had become a “spectator” in Afghanistan and that Indian leaders did not know “where to turn”.

“Relations with the Taliban should take place,” Katju said in a telephone interview with The New York Times on Tuesday. “The mechanics of engagement should be such that it should be open and straightforward.”

Pakistani leaders, for their part, have not welcomed the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan.

“When you embrace someone’s culture, you believe it is superior and you end up becoming its slave,” Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Monday in a veiled reference to the United States and Western culture. “In Afghanistan, they have broken the chains of slavery,” Khan said during an appearance in Islamabad, “but the slavery of the spirit does not break.”

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Newsrust - US Top News: India says it will prioritize Hindus and Sikhs in Afghan visas
India says it will prioritize Hindus and Sikhs in Afghan visas
Newsrust - US Top News
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