Kabul, May 12: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today interacted with Indian Embassy staffers and ITBP officers and also lend an ear to local Sikh and Hindu families, saluting them for showing “courage and bravery” in strife-torn Afghanistan.
On a two-day visit to the Afghan capital, Singh told the staffers of the Indian embassy that they were doing a great job and also creating goodwill among the people of Afghanistan, sources said.
Besides embassy staffers, the Prime Minister also met ITBP security officers deployed in this country.
“I salute your courage and bravery,” the Prime Minister said, as he met Indians stationed in Afghanistan.
Singh held interactions with five groups—among them were some families of Afghan Sikhs and Hindus—and enquired about their problems with Indian ambassador Gautam Mukhopadhyay carrying out the introductions.
Singh met these groups in the compound of Haramsarai—the residence of Afghanistan's last King Zahir Shah, where he is staying.
The Afghan Sikhs highlighted the problems being faced by their relatives and families who had moved to India many years back but were still facing problems in being granted citizenship.
The families also told the Prime Minister about the lack of cremation grounds for them in Kabul.
There are an estimated 531 Sikh families in Afghanistan -- 153 of them in Kabul itself, and their total population is over 2,000. PTI