110 Sikhs from Taliban-occupied Afghanistan eagerly waiting to come to India: SGPC
28 Afghan-Sikhs, including 26 adults and two children, arrived in Delhi from Kabul on Wednesday (August 3) as part of the evacuation program of the SGPC, India World Forum and the central government.
According to a report in the Indian Express, SGPC is working with the India World Forum and the government to help evacuate people from Afghanistan. Concerns about the safety of Sikhs in Afghanistan have increased since the Gurdwara attack in Kabul in June. 2 people were killed in this attack.
30 more Afghan Sikhs, including children and infants, will arrive in India from Kabul today. 110 still in Afghanistan and 61 e-visa applications pending at issuing centre: SGPC pic.twitter.com/aWhfXHcXC3
— Aparna Bose (@AparnaBose4) August 3, 2022
On Wednesday, SGPC officials said that around 65 to 70 people have been evacuated recently and they will be brought back to India once their visa applications are cleared and flights are arranged.
SGPC, the highest religious organization of Sikhs, said that arrangements have been made for these Sikhs from Afghanistan to stay. At least 110 Afghan-Sikhs are still stranded there, SGPC said in a statement.
SGPC coordinator Surinder Pal Singh Samana said, “28 Afghan-Sikhs were rescued on Wednesday and are now staying at Gurdwara Sri Guru Arjan Dev in Tilak Nagar (Delhi). Gurdwara Samiti will soon provide accommodation for them. We are doing our best to help.
He said Viswa Punjabi Sangathan, Sobthi Foundation and other social organizations are likely to rehabilitate the displaced.
The Indian World Forum has urged the central government to issue e-visas to those still trapped in Afghanistan. It also sought to provide a rehabilitation package to those who took refuge in India after last year’s regime change in Kabul.
Final Farewell: After the brutal Taliban took over in 2021, the last remaining Afghan Sikhs and Hindus fled to India. Only 100 are now left in all of Afghanistan. Another batch arrived today.
Hear the horror recounted by eyewitnesses in this report I filed last year.pic.twitter.com/Lw0qCBPaxo
— Pooja Shali (@PoojaShali) August 3, 2022
Forum president Puneet Chandok said, “The (central) government is appreciated for sending aid to Afghanistan, but homeless Hindus and Sikhs in Delhi should also be helped in every way.”
He said people deported from Afghanistan “do not want to migrate” to other countries for citizenship and the Center should provide them with “long-term relief”.
According to Times of India, Gurudwara Sri Guru Arjan Dev President Pratap Singh said that most of the Sikhs who come here try to visit these countries because of the better facilities provided by the Canadian and US governments.
“Many of them have already left for Canada with the help of the Canadian government and Pulawar Foundation,” he said.
He said many Afghan Sikhs who have applied for asylum in the US are on its deportation and refugee lists.
It is known that on June 18, 2022, two people, including a Sikh, were killed in multiple blasts by terrorists at the Garde Parwan Gurdwara located in the Afghan capital, Kabul. The terrorist organization ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was in retaliation for insulting the Prophet.
According to reports, Afghan Sikhs are repeatedly targeted. On July 27, a blast occurred at the shop of a Sikh near Garde Parwan Gurdwara.
(with input in news agency language)
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Genres: World, India, Specialty