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Afghan truck drivers praise India for sending humanitarian aid to Afghanistan

Security personnel checking documents of outgoing trucks at Attari Wagah Border in Amritsar on Tuesday. (ANI photo)

Afghan truckers who came to Attari integrated check-post (ICP) to carry the first consignment of humanitarian aid of 50,000 tonnes of wheat to Afghanistan praised India for the kind gesture.

Since the Taliban took power in Afghanistan, the situation in Afghanistan is critical and millions of people are suffering from hunger and food crisis. Most of the people of Afghanistan are living below the poverty line, in such a situation, the humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan by India is like a ray of hope.

Arif, an Afghan truck driver told ANI the help that the Indian government is providing to Afghanistan by sending wheat will bring a lot of relief.

"The situation in Afghanistan is still not good but now gradually there is hope that everything will be fine. There is a lot of poverty in Afghanistan, people are suffering from hunger and they do not have food grains. India helped our people," Arif said.

Another truck driver Baba Gul, who is a resident of Kabul city, lauded the move by India.

"The food grains that India is sending to the poor people of our country is a big relief because the situation in Afghanistan is not good and the pockets of the people of Afghanistan is empty. There is no money, the people of Afghanistan have no work," said Baba Gul.

Rahimsha, who is also a truck driver, said that the people of Afghanistan need help for more things, in which medicine is also one. "India has helped our people, we are happy," he said.

In this endeavour, India has already supplied 500,000 doses of COVAXIN, 13 tons of essential lifesaving medicines and 500 units of winter clothing. These consignments were handed over to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Indira Gandhi Hospital, Kabul.

Foreign Secretary of India, Harsh V Shringla on Tuesday flagged off the first consignment of humanitarian aid of 50,000 tonnes of wheat to Afghanistan, in the presence of Afghanistan's Ambassador to India, Farid Mamundzay.

"We are extending our humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan, in the form of 50,000 tonnes of wheat. We are flagging off our first consignment of 2,500 tonnes in 50 Afghan trucks, today. It'll be delivered to the World Food Program for dissemination," said Shringla.

"This consignment will go from Attari ICP, Jalalabad, via Pakistan; many such consignments will be sent to fulfill the humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan in the next 2 to 3 months," added the Foreign Secretary.

In response to appeals made by the United Nations for humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan, the Government of India has decided to gift 50,000 MT of wheat to the people of Afghanistan. The supply will be effected by the Food Corporation of India (FCI) and transported from ICP Attari (India) to Jalalabad (Afghanistan) by Afghan transporters.

The shipment is part of the commitment made by the Government of India to supply 50,000 MT of wheat for the people of Afghanistan. The wheat assistance will be delivered in multiple consignments and will be handed over to the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.

"We have received information from other agencies including the United Nations that the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan is very serious, there is a shortage of food grains, there is a shortage of medicines, in view of all these things, this humanitarian aid has been sent from India to the people of Afghanistan," said Harsh V Shringla.

"India has a historical relationship with Afghanistan. India and the people of Afghanistan have a people-to-people contact. India has already sent the COVID-19 vaccine including, lifesaving medicines to Afghanistan. The next thing depends on how much and what things Afghanistan needs going forward, India will be ready to help considering the humanitarian aspect," added the Indian Foreign Secretary.

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