Amid growing tension in Afghanistan, with the Taliban staking claim to its territory, India has decided to evacuate about 50 diplomats and security personnel of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) from Kandahar, by sending a special Indian Air Force flight, The Hindu reported.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in its statement said that the move is purely precautionary, and has stemmed from reports that if the Taliban continues to push on to the southern city of Kandahar, the fighting in the city with Afghan Defence and Security Forces (ANDSF) could get fierce.
As per officials, the staff that returned to Delhi will be sent back if the situation improves. Alternatively, some may travel to Kabul to continue their consular operations, if required.
In April 2020, the government decided to suspend operations at India’s other two consulates in Jalalabad and Herat.
While the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had said the decision was taken on the heels of the COVID-19 pandemic, security concerns were believed to be the reason they have not been sent back yet.
(With inputs from The Hindu)