India to grant priority e-visas to Sikhs, Hindus in Afghanistan

Following the attack on Karte Parwan Gurdwara in Kabul that resulted in the death of two persons, India has decided to grant e-visas to over 100 Sikhs and Hindus in Afghanistan on priority.

Meanwhile, Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISKP) on June 19 claimed the responsibility for the Karte Parwan Gurdwara attack in Kabul. ISKP released a statement claiming responsibility for the attack. According to ISKP, 'Abu Mohammed al Tajiki' carried out the attack which lasted for three hours.
The group claimed that besides submachine guns and hand grenades, four IEDs and a car bomb were also used in the attack.
It further claimed that about 50 Hindu Sikhs and Taliban members were killed in the attack and the attack was conducted as revenge for the insult of Prophet Mohammed by an Indian politician.

However, the Bharatiya Janata Party has suspended its spokesperson Nupur Sharma from the party's primary membership and expelled its Delhi media head Naveen Kumar Jindal after their alleged inflammatory remarks against minorities.

Initial inputs suggested that an explosion took place outside the gate of the Gurdwara killing at least two people. Another explosion was later heard from inside the complex and some shops attached to the Gurdwara caught fire.

The holy Guru Granth Sahib from Gurudwara in Afghanistan's capital city Kabul was retrieved from the complex, from which plumes of smoke were seen billowing out after the attack early this morning, according to visuals posted on social media.

Visuals posted by locals on social media show a barefoot man carrying the Guru Granth Sahib on his head. The visuals show two or three more people, all walking without footwear accompanying him.

According to Sikh religious belief, the Saroop, a physical copy of the Guru Granth Sahib is considered a living guru. The transportation of Guru Granth Sahib is governed by a strict code of conduct and as a mark of respect, the Guru Granth Sahib is carried on the head, and the person walks barefoot.

According to reports, the Holy Book was taken to the residence of Gurnam Singh, president, of Gurdwara Karte Parwan.

Religious minorities in Afghanistan, including the Sikh community, have been targets of violence in Afghanistan. In October, last year 15 to 20 terrorists entered a Gurdwara in the Kart-e-Parwan District of Kabul and tied up the guards. In March 2020, a deadly attack took place at Sri Guru Har Rai Sahib Gurudwara in Kabul's Short Bazaar area in which 27 Sikhs were killed and several were injured. Islamic State terrorists claimed responsibility for the attack.

(ANI)

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