After India evacuated staff posted in its consulate in Kandahar in view of the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan, the Ministry of External Affairs on Sunday said safety and security of Indian personnel is paramount, adding that the consulate general has not been closed in the war-torn country.
"India is closely monitoring the evolving security situation in Afghanistan. The safety and security of our personnel is paramount," the foreign ministry has said in a statement.
"The Consulate General of India in Kandahar has not been closed. However, due to the intense fighting near Kandahar city, India-based personnel have been brought back for the time being," MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said in a statement.
He also emphasized, "this is a purely temporary measure until the situation stabilizes. The Consulate continues to operate through our local staff members."
Referring to the functioning of visa and consular services in capital city Kabul, he said "Arrangements are being made to ensure continued delivery of visa and consular services through our Embassy in Kabul."
"As an important partner of Afghanistan, India remains committed to a peaceful, sovereign and democratic Afghanistan," he added.
Describing the security situation in Afghanistan as fluid and deteriorating, the Afghan envoy to India Farid Mamundzay has said the Taliban need to cease violence and there should be an end to the bloodshed.
"More than 200,000 Afghan civilians are displaced already. There is an active fight going on between Afghan forces and Taliban fighters in 200 districts out of a total of 375. There is also trouble in 18 border districts that share a border with several countries Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Iran," the envoy said.
(With ANI inputs)