On Sunday, the first batch of Sikh evacuees from Afghanistan reached India. Approximately 700 Hindu and Sikhs Afghan Nationals have registered with Embassy of India in Kabul and are seeking an immediate return to India, and today, 11 of them landed in Delhi via a special flight.
As per an ANI report, the group consists of four children, one minor girl, three women, and three men.
Afghanistan has a rather minuscule Sikh community, that is facing persecution from the Pakistan backed Taliban. There have been several reports in recent days -- from abductions to attacks on Sikh temples and community areas.
Many have passed away amid the turmoil, and as 60-year-old Delhi based Sikh, Nidan Singh Sachdeva, told ANI, there prevails an "atmosphere of fear" in the region.
Incidentally, Sachdeva who arrived in India today, had recently been kidnapped by terrorists and later rescued by security forces. Fellow repatriate, 16-year-old Sunmeet Kaur had also faced a similar ordeal.
Coming as this does in the wake of the controversial citizenship Amendment Act, many on social media have linked the CAA with the repatriation efforts. Others still took it upon themselves to call out those who had opposed the Act.
It is unclear whether they will fall wholly under the ambit of the CAA which intends to grant citizenship to those who fled persecution from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan before December 2014. It will however aid them and many others in gaining a fast track entry in seeking Indian citizenship.
"There is no greater blessings in life than giving refuge to the truly persecuted . So, proud of India's CAA law. Character and integrity of Nations and individuals is only tested through these sincere, caring, loving measures," wrote one user.
Many also seemed to sympathise with the grim situation that had forced these individuals to make the journey to India.
Take a look:
(With inputs from agencies)
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