Amid the escalating security tension in Afghanistan between the Taliban and the Afghan military, country’s Army Chief General Wali Muhammad Ahmadzai is about to visit India on July 27, and will meet senior political and military leadership, as per sources.
Afghanistan’s deputy minister of acquisition and technical planning was also scheduled to visit India from July 11 and 16. However, his trip was rescheduled. “The visit is likely to happen later but the dates have not been fixed yet,” said an official. The supply of military platforms and equipment to Afghanistan as part of military assistance from India is likely to be a point of discussion during Ahmadzai's visit, an official said.
Over the last few years, India has supplied seven helicopters to Afghanistan. While four of them are Mi24 attack helicopters, the other three are Cheetal helicopters. Additionally, India has been training Afghan cadets at military academies. Earlier, Afghanistan had given a wishlist to India which consisted of offensive military hardware including artillery guns, tanks and armored vehicles.
India has invested three billion US dollars in infrastructure projects in Afghanistan over the years. This includes the building of roads, a critical dam and the parliament building of the country.
A month ago, the previous army chief in Afghanistan was removed by the government after casualties from the Afghan forces' side rose and the Taliban expanded its control over several provinces. General Wali Mohammad Ahmadzai was appointed then.
Apart from the army chief, the defence and interior ministers in Afghanistan were also replaced.
In the wake of US withdrawal from Afghanistan after an extended period of war against terrorism, the Taliban insurgents are redeveloping their grip in the war-torn country by capturing the important border regions, raising alarm for the Afghan government and military forces who already fear of severe political instability in the country.
Meanwhile, reports about Pakistan's collaboration with the Taliban to target Indian assets in Afghanistan have emerged.