Road to refuge for Afghan nationals through India-Pakistan border may also face Covid hurdle | India News – Times of Nation
Immigration sources here say Attari international border is already closed for passengers due to the Covid-19 pandemic. ‘Only those passengers are allowed to enter or exit India who have permission from the ministry of home affairs and fulfil Covid-19 norms; secondly, there is hardly any possibility of Afghans arriving here because they would not be allowed by Pakistan to reach their Wagah international border. Even if they somehow manage to reach the Attari international border, they wouldn’t be given entry without proper permissions and documents,’ says an immigration source here.
According to Pakistani media reports, many Afghans had gathered at Spin Boldak border in South Kandhar province of Afghanistan hoping to sneak into Pakistan through Chaman border in Balochistan province. However, the Pakistani government has temporarily closed the border to prevent the entry of Afghan refugees.
Sources say that majority of Afghan refugees have arrived India by air.
Meanwhile, Border Security Force (BSF) has beefed up security at the Attari international border in the wake of the Taliban wresting control of Afghanistan. ‘Terrorist groups in Pakistan could try to infiltrate Afghan jehadis into India, so we have augmented the security all along the international border with Pakistan in Punjab,’ said a BSF source.
On the other hand, a group of 20 people, including 19 Pakistanis, have been allowed to cross over to Pakistan via the Attari international border, said assistant sub-inspector Arun Pal, the protocol officer at Attari. They had arrived here from Rajasthan’s Jodhpur, Maharashtra’s Nagpur and Chattisgarh.
However, another group of 78 Pakistani Hindus who had arrived India about one-and-a-half years ago, but couldn’t return due to the Covid-19-induced lockdowns, was denied to cross the border. Pal said that they had arrived from Rajasthan, but none of them had RT-PCR test reports. ‘They were asked to get the RT-PCR reports for crossing the border,’ he said.
(News Source -Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Times Of Nation staff and is published from a timesofindia.indiatimes.com feed.)
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