New Delhi. 22 June  2020. In a serious development in Afghanistan the Sikh community leaders Nedan Sikh was abducted from the Paktika province in Eastern Afghanistan recently and Indian government  has condemned this heinous crime. Nedan Singh is Gurusewak at the local Gurudwara of Tsamkani district in the Paktika province .

Official Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Anurag Srivastava said,”We strongly condemn the abduction of Mr. Nedan Singh, a leader of the Hindu and Sikh Community of Afghanistan, by terrorists. The targeting and persecution of the minority community members by terrorists at the behest of their external supporters is a matter of grave concern. India is in touch with the Government of Afghanistan for ensuring safety , security and well being of the minority community in Afghanistan. We hope that the Government of Afghanistan would be able to secure safe and early release of Mr Nedan Singh.”

It may be recalled that a militant attack in late March killed 25 Sikhs in  Kabul. In a  war-torn country where  minorities are subject to constant threats by militants and discrimination by government, the Hindus and Sikhs in Afghanistan are a scared lot and live in perpetual fear .

As per the TOLO News of Afghanistan close to 99 percent of former Hindu and Sikh citizens of Afghanistan have left the country over the past three decades. The Sikh and Hindu population number was 220,000 in the 1980’s. That number dropped sharply to 15,000 when the mujahideen was in power during the 1990’s and remained at that level during the Taliban regime. It is now estimated that only 1,350 Hindus and Sikhs remain in the country.