New Delhi: Scores of refugees hit the street here on Monday to protest against the takeover of their country Afghanistan by Taliban. The protestors, led by Afghan women, gathered at the heart of the national capital where they demonstrated their angst against the status change of Afghanistan from a democratic nation to an Islamic country, as well the future lies ahead for the women there.
“We wanted our voice to be heard,” 26-year old Rukhsar Khanum, a refugee living in the Bhogal area said. The women gathered there said that they want to assert that Afghans do not see the Taliban as a legitimate government and urge the world to not recognize them as well.
Recognising the Taliban is equivalent to providing legitimacy to the atrocities we have faced or the inhabitants there (Afghanistan), especially women, are forced to undergo. It means that the world will officially declare us (Afghan women) as slaves who have no rights and value even less than an animal under Taliban regime,” said 24-year-old Sadaf Raheem.
The protest was called by the National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW) and All India Progressive Women's Association (AIPWA), outfits of the Communist Party of India (CPI-ML) at Mandi House.
There was a sentiment of resentment for the United States among the protesters, especially after the dramatic departure of the US government after fighting the Taliban forces for 20 years and leaving the nation at the brink of collapse.
The protesters also shared disappointment with the world leaders as they claim that everyone knew what was happing in Afghanistan but did not do anything.
“Not just our president (Ashraf Ghani), but every other nation abandoned us. The countries have their diplomatic missions in Afghanistan. Despite being in India, I was getting information from my relatives about how fast the Taliban was capturing territories. Do you imagine that the world leaders were caught by surprise? They all were updated but just chose to act,” said 22-year-old Bushra, an Afghan woman pursuing her post-graduation from Jamia Milia Islamia University.
“It was not news for the world leaders about how fast the Taliban was making advances. The US continued to maintain that the rogue forces would never defeat Afghan and US forces till Heart was lost. It was a lie structured to show the world how Afghanistan was struggling to keep the country from falling into Taliban hands whereas, in reality, the nation was forced to surrender gradually to the Taliban. It was led by the US and all the other nations remained silent to the atrocity,” said Kavita Krishnan, Secretary, AIPWA, and a member of the politburo of CPI (ML).
However, the people gathered expressed a huge hope from India in providing shelter and dignified life, till Afghanistan becomes habitable for them, especially women.
“Under Taliban, there is no dignity even in the death. My mother and other women of the family have suffered enough atrocities of Taliban. I don’t want to submit myself to it. However, I hope the Indian government open its heart and door to my hamwatan (fellow countrymen) who are in desperate need to be rescued. Accept us all on humanitarian ground,” said Rukhsar.
Meanwhile, Indian scientist and social activist Gauhar Raza said that this is the time for India to practice its old age tradition of 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbkam' (the whole world is one family). “Our government should not accept the victims on religious lines. Give refuge to everyone without classifying them under religion. See them as human and act as a human does,” he added.
Raza’s criticism was based on a statement by the Ministry of External Affairs where it had said that India will help Afghan Sikhs and the Hindu community living there on priority. The statement drew criticism as the communities hold only a tiny share among the Afghan population. (UNI)