A day after Kabul airport serial blasts, MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi spoke on the evacuation situation in the worn-torn country saying thier overall assessment is that the vast majority of Indians who wish to return have been evacuated.
“Some more are likely to be in Afghanistan but they don’t have the exact number for that,” Arindam Bagchi said on evacuation.
Speaking about Afghans who have been evacuated to India, MEA said, “MHA has announced e-emergency visas. These are six-month visas. So they are currently coming here under the six-month visa regime. We will take it from there.”
“The last flight had 40 odd people. We were hearing reports that Afghan nationals were facing difficulties in reaching airport. We know some Afghan nationals, including Afghan Sikhs & Hindus, couldn’t reach airport on August 25. Our flight had to come without them,” MEA said.
On Kabul situation and recongnising the Taliban, MEA said, “The situation on the ground is uncertain (in Afghanistan). Primary concern is security & safety of people. Currently, there is no clarity about any entity forming a government in Kabul. I think we are jumping the gun regarding recognition.”
“We continue to monitor the situation very carefully (in Afghanistan). This is an evolving situation,” it added.
“We were able to bring out some Afghan nationals as well as nationals from other countries. Of these, many of them were Sikhs and Hindus. Primarily, our focus will be on Indian nationals, but we’ll also stand by Afghans who stood by us,” Arindam Bagchi further said.
“We’ve evacuated over 550 people in 6 separate flights, either from Kabul or Dushanbe. Of these, over 260 were Indians. The Indian government also facilitated evacuation of Indian nationals through other agencies. We were in touch with various countries, like US, Tajikistan,” Bagchi mentioned.
Evacuation flights from Afghanistan resumed with new urgency on Friday, a day after two suicide bombings targeted the thousands of people desperately fleeing a Taliban takeover and killed more than 100.
The U.S. warned more attacks could come ahead of the looming deadline for foreign troops to leave, ending America’s longest war.
As the call to prayer echoed through Kabul along with the roar of departing planes, the anxious crowd outside the city’s airport was as large as ever.
Dozens of Taliban members carrying heavy weapons patrolled one area about 500 meters (1,600 feet) from the facility to prevent anyone from venturing beyond.