PM Modi ‘Saddened’ by Gurudwara Attack in Kabul; 25 Dead
It’s been reported that there were around 150 worshippers inside the gurudwara at the time of the attack.
India on Wednesday, 25 March, condemned the attack on a gurudwara in Afghanistan's Kabul, which has left at least 27 people dead and wounded 10 others, according to local media.
One of the deceased is an Indian. Tian Singh from Delhi, was in Kabul and his family has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to help in bringing back the mortal remains.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) released a statement, saying:
“Such cowardly attacks on places of religious worship of the minority community, especially at this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, is reflective of the diabolical mindset of the perpetrators and their backers.”MEA statement
The MEA also commended the Afghan security forces for their “valorous response to the attack”.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also condemned the incident in his address to the people of Varanasi on 25 March. He said, “I am saddened by today's terror attack at Gurudwara in Kabul. I express my condolences to the families of all the deceased.”
Earlier on Wednesday, Afghanistan's Interior Ministry had said the police responded promptly to the attack and were at the site. According to Afghan news outlet TOLOnews, the attackers included “suicide bombers.” “Three attackers are still fighting with security forces, and one is shot,” it quoted a security source as saying.
According to news agency Associated Press, the attack has been claimed by the Islamic State Group.
Sikh lawmaker Narindra Singh Khalsa said he received a call from a worshipper inside the gurudwara telling him of the attack, and rushed over to help, The Associated Press (AP) reported. There were about 150 worshippers inside the gurudwara at the time of the attack, he said.
Earlier this month, Afghanistan's Islamic State affiliate struck a gathering of minority Shiite Muslims in Kabul, killing 32 people.
Sikhs have suffered widespread discrimination in the conservative Muslim country and have also been targeted by Islamic extremists.
Under Taliban rule in the late 1990s, they were asked to identify themselves by wearing yellow armbands, but the rule was not enforced, according to AP.
In recent years, large numbers of Sikhs and Hindus have sought asylum in India.
In July 2018, a convoy of Sikhs and Hindus was attacked by an Islamic State (IS) suicide bomber, as they were on their way to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in the eastern city of Jalalabad – the capital of Nangarhar province. Nineteen people were killed in the attack.
(With inputs from Associated Press and TOLOnews)
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