Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Thursday, January 17th, 2019

CEO’s Visit to India

CEO Abdullah Abdullah is on a five-day visit in India to participate in a Counter-Terrorism Conference in Jaipur. The Conference is organized by India Foundation in association with Sardar Patel University of Police Security and Criminal Justice. The conference is considered as one of the most high-profile events on counter-terrorism, and it is expected to have attendance of at least five Indian Union ministers along with foreign secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and national security advisor Ajit Doval. It will also bring together counter terrorism practitioners, policy makers and public intellectuals from India and abroad. The first Counter-Terrorism Conference was held in March, 2015 in Jaipur. This is the second edition of the conference and its theme is “Tackling Global Terror Outfits”.
Afghanistan is one of the countries that have been suffering from terrorism to a large extent. The counter-terrorism efforts in the country have not been able to bear ripe fruits. Now, that country is striving to stand on its own, counter-terrorism policy and efforts would play a decisive role; therefore, every sort of support regarding both of theoretical and practical nature must be sought and appreciated. If there can be any sort of guidance and support from the Counter-Terrorism Conference, Afghanistan must get it readily.
CEO Abdullah also met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday and thanked him for India’s economic and military support to Afghanistan. He reiterated that the foundation of the relations between the two friends (Afghanistan and India) is strong and these relations and cooperation must further expand; and the strategic agreements between the two countries must be implemented as Afghanistan is prepared for this.
Indian Prime Minister Modi also stressed the need for relations between the two countries to be strengthened and said that his country will help Afghanistan in economic and security sections.
It has to be realized that India has always strived to guide its support for Afghanistan’s stability.
People of Afghanistan also consider India as its friend. The public opinion in Afghanistan is highly in support of greater Indian influence in the country, and it is because of the fact that through most part of its relation with Afghanistan, India has been a true friend.
India seeks to expand its economic presence in Afghanistan in the post withdrawal era. In particular, it wants to improve transport connectivity and economic collaboration with countries in Central and South Asia. More such projects are likely to come up, which includes setting up Iron ore mines, a 6 MTPA steel plant (by SAIL—Steel Authority of India Limited), an 800 MW power plant, Hydro-electric power projects, transmission lines, roads etc.
Undoubtedly, India has played a significant role in the reconstruction and rehabilitation process in Afghanistan. India’s extensive developmental assistance program, which equals around USD 2 billion, is an indicator of its abiding commitment to peace, tranquility and prosperity in Afghanistan during this critical juncture of security and governance transition. This makes India one of the leading donor nations to Afghanistan, and by far the largest among the regional countries.
India seems to believe that development of Afghanistan requires reliable and lasting investment in Afghanistan that can help it exploit its natural resource properly. Therefore, India stands at the forefront of the promotion of investment in Afghanistan and a consortium of public and private Indian companies has been selected to make one of the largest investments in the country’s mining sector, in the Hajigak iron ore reserves.
India also realizes the fact that there can be stability in Afghanistan only if all the major actors and countries have a stake in its stability, development and growth. Realizing this India has been increasing efforts to attract regional and trans-regional investment into Afghanistan that provides a reliable alternative to the dominant narrative of extremism and offers job opportunities to its population, by initiating events like the Delhi Investment Summit on Afghanistan in June 2012. Recognizing that the region holds the key to peace in Afghanistan, India has an important role in confidence building measures in the region in accordance to the Istanbul Process.
It also helped initiate a dialogue on Afghanistan through different platforms like the Afghanistan-India-US trilateral and the Afghanistan-India-Iran trilateral platforms that seek to bring together international partners with disparate worldviews to follow the common goal of securing peace and prosperity in Afghanistan. India also expressed its assistance to international cooperation on Afghanistan at the UN and at various international conferences that are focused on the future of Afghanistan, including the seminal Tokyo Developmental Conference in July 2012.
In the post withdrawal Afghanistan, as there are security, financial and political challenges, Afghan people and government would require true support and assistance; therefore, India’s support for Afghanistan is of immense importance and the people of Afghanistan also realize this fact and they wish that India should keep its assistance continue until it is able to stand on its own.