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India condemns attack on Afghan Sikhs, PM Modi extends assistance


Mumbai: Prime Minister Narendra Modi condemned the terror strike in Afghanistan’s Jalalabad province and termed it as an attack on country’s “multicultural fabric”.
Taking to Twitter on Monday morning, PM Modi said that India stands ready to assist Afghanistan “in this sad hour”
At least 19 people were killed in Afghanistan’s Jalalabad as a suicide bomber targeted a convoy of Sikhs, which was on its way, to meet President Ghani. Most of those died in the blast were Hindus and Sikhs, including the only Sikh candidate in upcoming legislative elections.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj also expressed heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims. The minister said that she will be meeting the family members at 6 pm on Monday.
The attack happened at a market located near the provincial governor’s compound where President Ashraf Ghani was holding meetings.
Avtar Singh Khalsa, a longtime leader of the Sikh community who had planned to run in the parliamentary elections set for October, was killed in the attack.
Criticising the attack, the Indian Embassy in Kabul on Sunday tweeted: “We strongly condemn the heinous and cowardly terrorist attack in #Jalalabad today evening which resulted in the death of 20 innocent Afghans, including 10 members of the Afghan Sikh Community, and injured more than 20 persons.”
“We convey heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and pray for early recovery of the injured…The attack again underlines the need for united global fight against international terrorism without discrimination and accountability of those who support terrorists in any manner,” it said.
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh also condemned the attack and extended help to the victims and their families.
He further called upon the global community to come together to fight “against barbaric forces of terror.”
Afghan President Ghani, who is on a two-day visit to Nangarhar, earlier on Sunday, attended the inauguration of a new hospital complex.