After the Afghan embassy in New Delhi declared in a statement late September that it is ceasing its activities on October 1, 2023, Afghan consulates in Mumbai and Hyderabad have avowed to continue functioning as per Tolonews.
Indian Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said the Indian External Ministry is in touch with the Afghan diplomats “who are there in the embassy, as well as with the Afghan diplomats who are in consulates in Mumbai and Hyderabad.”
“However, we received communication last week … from the embassy, indicating that it intends to suspend operations at the end of September ... of course such a decision is an internal matter of foreign mission,” Bagchi said. “On our part, we will continue with our efforts to assist the people of Afghanistan.”
As per Tolonews Consul General of Afghanistan in Hyderabad, Zakia Wardak, and acting Consul General of Afghanistan in Mumbai, Sayed Mohammad Ibrahimkhil, met with senior officials of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs on October 3, 2023, according to a joint declaration of the consulates, which was shared by Zakia Wardak. The statement gave details of meetings between the Afghan Consuls General and Indian officials:
- The Indian government will not close the Afghan embassy in New Delhi and both consulates will remain functional and continue their operations for the benefit of Afghan nationals.
- The Indian government assured continued humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan.
Tolonews reported that declaration also criticized an "assertion" by Afghan ambassador in New Delhi Farid Mamundzai, saying that the Consulates General “unequivocally disavow and seek to clarify the assertion made by Mamundzai concerning the alleged closure of the Consulates General and other related allegations” and “it is crucial to note that Ambassador Farid Mamundzai has been absent from the Embassy for an extended period, and these decisions have been undertaken without prior consultation or consensus with the leadership of the Consulates General in Mumbai and Hyderabad."
“These decisions appear to be motivated by personal and internal matters within the embassy,” the statement said.
While India does not recognise the defacto authorities - Taliban administration in Kabul which calls itself as Islamic emirate of Afghanistan - New Delhi has continued to provide substantial humanitarian support in terms of 50,000 tonnes of wheat for which a coordinating agency on the Afghan side would be necessary even though this is being provided through the World Food Programme.
India has also offered 1000 scholarships to Afghan youth for online education which again requires coordination.
However in what form the Embassy will function remains to be seen?