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India hints at Pakistan hand in Kabul gurdwara attack

Family members cry after an attack in Kabul, Afghanistan, Wednesday, March 25, 2020.

Family members cry after an attack in Kabul, Afghanistan, Wednesday, March 25, 2020.   | Photo Credit: AP

The Taliban, which is in a fragile peace negotiation with the government of President Ashraf Ghani, has denied any role in the attack.

India strongly condemned Wednesday’s terror strike on a Gurudwara in Kabul, and pledged to help the Sikh and Hindu communities of Afghanistan. The attack began at 7.45 in the morning and continued till midday which left at least 11 dead. The attackers temporarily took around 200 devotees hostage during this time.

“We convey our sincerest condolences to the immediate family members of the deceased and wish speedy recovery to the injured. India stands ready to extend all possible assistance to the affected families of the Hindu and Sikh community of Afghanistan,” said a press release from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).

The incident drew condemnation from Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who conveyed his condolences to those who lost their lives in the attack. "I am shocked by the news of a terror attack on a Gurdwara in Kabul, Afghanistan," said Mr Gandhi. One of those who died in the attack is Tian Singh, a 71-year old Indian citizen from Delhi. Family members of Mr Singh have demanded that his mortal remains should be brought to India.

The Taliban which is in a fragile peace negotiation with the government of President Ashraf Ghani has denied any role in the attack. The MEA hinted at Pakistan’s involvement in the act and said the attack, which was carried out as both Afghanistan and India are combating the COVID-19 pandemic, was“reflective of the diabolical mindset of the perpetrators and their backers”.

India praised the Afghan security forces which freed the hostages and eliminated the fighters.

It is the first such strike against a minority community of Afghanistan after India legislated a new citizenship law in December which announced amnesty for persecuted minority religious communities of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 4:54:49 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/india-condemns-gurdwara-attack-promises-all-possible-help-to-sikhs-and-hindus-of-afghanistan/article31161447.ece

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