Near Future India May Not Open Embassy in Kabul

September 07, 2021

India may not revive its embassy in Kabul in the near future, but it has stated that it will maintain “people-to-people” contact in Afghanistan by having lines of communication opened with the Taliban’s highest ranks. According to reports, India’s government formed a high-level team, which included infamous National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, to focus on Afghanistan because India would not have any kind of “physical presence” there. According to well-placed diplomatic sources, India has stopped receiving Afghan students and others who come for medical reasons until commercial flights are resumed and the entire evacuation is completed.

According to the sources, New Delhi will not recognize the Taliban government, which is predicted to be formed soon, and thus neither side will be able to hire diplomats to the capitals of the other. Approximately 100-150 Indian nationals remain in Afghanistan, and the Indian government has yet to begin issuing e-visas, despite the fact that it had already overruled previously issued visas just days after the Taliban took control of Kabul.

Afghan nationals in India for medical treatment can now apply for visas through the Pakistan High Commission in order to travel to Afghanistan via Pakistan. According to sources, India has also requested help from Qatar and Russia in order to maintain communication channels with the Taliban. On July 11, 2021, India closed its consulate in Kandahar, the Taliban’s birthplace, and on August 10, just five days before the Taliban took control of Kabul city, the Indian consulate in Mazar-e-Sharif was also closed, while the Kabul embassy shuttered on August 16, and the entire diplomatic staff had already returned to New Delhi.

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