Eleven Afghan Sikhs granted visas by India

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Jul 26, 2020, 10.57 AM(IST)

Afghan Sikhs Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

The Ministry of External Affairs said on Thursday that there has been a recent spurt of attacks on Hindus and Sikhs in Afghanistan by terrorists at the behest of their "external supporters" and India has been providing necessary visas to members of these communities who want to come.

As many as 11 Sikhs from Afghanistan have been granted short-term visas by the Indian Embassy in Kabul, four months after an Islamic State-backed attack at a gurdwara in Kabul’s Shor Bazaar killed at least 25 members of the community.

They are expected to reach Delhi on Sunday.

The Ministry of External Affairs said on Thursday that there has been a recent spurt of attacks on Hindus and Sikhs in Afghanistan by terrorists at the behest of their "external supporters" and India has been providing necessary visas to members of these communities who want to come.

"We have been receiving requests from the members of these communities. They want to move to India, they want to settle down here, and despite the ongoing COVID situation, we are facilitating these requests," MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said.

He said once those who want to come and settle in India arrive in the country, their requests will be examined and acted upon based on existing rules and policies.

The move comes after the Afghan Sikh community, which numbers less than 700, made multiple appeals to the Embassy and wrote to Home Minister Amit Shah seeking immediate evacuation and rescue.

A heavily armed ISIS-Khorasan (ISIS-K) suicide bomber attacked a gurdwara in the heart of Afghanistan's capital on March 25, killing 25 Sikhs and injuring eight others.

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