'Mistaken' for government officials, seven Indians abducted in Afghanistan

No one has yet claimed responsibility for the abduction, but Baghlan Governor Abdul Hai Niamati blamed groups opposed to the Afghan government.

Published: 07th May 2018 03:42 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th May 2018 01:57 PM   |  A+A-

Image used for representational purpose only.

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: In what was billed as a case of mistaken identity by the local media, seven Indian engineers and an Afghan national were kidnapped by Taliban gunmen in Afghanistan’s northern Baghlan Province on Sunday. The gunmen reportedly mistook them for government employees.

The engineers were travelling to a government-run power station in a minibus when they and their Afghan driver were stopped and abducted, Baghlan police spokesman Zabihullah Shuja said. The engineers worked for Da Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat, which runs power-generating stations in the country. No one has yet claimed responsibility for the abduction, but Baghlan Governor Abdul Hai Niamati blamed “groups opposed to the Afghan government” and said efforts are on trace the engineers and negotiate their release.

ALSO READ | Afghan officials working with tribal elders to rescue abducted Indian engineers

“We are in contact with the Afghan authorities and further details are being ascertained,” the Indian Ministry of External Affairs said.“Abductions for ransom are common in Afghanistan,” a senior official who has served in Afghanistan told TNIE. “Now that winter is over and the ‘fighting season’ has resumed, you can expect more such incidents,” he warned.

Another official, however, said the timing of the incident was “significant, given that India and China recently announced they would work together in infrastructure projects in the country. This has rattled Pakistan, which opposes any Indian presence in Afghanistan. Now, the ISI-backed Taliban will find it difficult to attack Indian interests in the country for fear of annoying Big Brother Beijing.”

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

IPL2018