New Delhi: In what appears to be course correction after the Rangina Kargar episode, India has allowed five Afghans, including a former provincial Governor of Afghanistan having a diplomatic passport into the country.
The decision comes days after India deported Afghan Member of Parliament Kargar, a move that invited criticism at home and diplomatic circles globally.
According to a senior official, who confirmed that a week ago five people including a family all possessing Afghanistan diplomatic passports had arrived at the Indira Gandhi International Airport Delhi from Dubai. Their arrival was informed to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and entry into the country cleared.
“A senior doctor with Afghanistan government arrived with his wife and two children and Samangan’s governor Mohammad Dawood Kalakani,” said the official, adding that since all flights to Afghanistan had been stopped from India, they all first went to Iran then Dubai and finally arrived in Delhi.
The diplomatic/official passport facilitates visa-free travel under a reciprocal arrangement with India for 30 days.
On July 20, Rangina Kargar, member of the Wolesi Jirga where she represents the Faryab province had claimed that upon her arrival at the IGI Airport from Istanbul on a Fly Dubai flight, she was not allowed to come outside the airport though she held a diplomatic passport.
After the incident, a joint secretary-level officer in the Union Ministry of External Affairs had apologised to her for the incident and offered her an emergency visa.
The official added that after Kargar’s episode, instructions were issued regarding diplomatic passport holders and allowed them hassle-free entry to the country.
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