As the 2014 deadline for US troops drawdown from Afghanistan nears, Defence Minister A K Antony on Thursday raised a red flag over the security fallout of the American move, but said India has a “back up” plan to secure itself from the likely terror spillover. At a media interaction on the sidelines of the DefExpo-2014 show here, Antony, however, said he would not reveal what the backup plan is. But he made it clear that India has “no military role” in Afghanistan.
“We are concerned about the fall out after the withdrawal of forces. We are very much concerned about that,” he said. “As the defence minister, I cannot reveal our backup plan,” he said, exhibiting his sense of humour and the burden of responsibility. “We have taken precautionary steps. What steps we have taken, I cannot reveal,” he added. India and several other nations have expressed fears of terror outfits, that oww allegiance to Taliban, raising their heads after the troops withdrawal. Security circles also fear a terror spillover in Jammu and Kashmir.
Though it keeps away from having a military presence in Afghanistan, India would assist the Afghan National Army (ANA) in capacity-building. Around 1,000 personnel from the ANA are being trained at Indian military academies and other basic training schools.
Considering importance of Afghanistan in its neighbourhood security calculus, New Delhi has given nearly a $2 billion development aid to Kabul and has expressed willingness to supply military transport helicopters.