Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Ufa, Russia. This was the second time when Modi and Ghani had met in three months.
Important points of the meet:
- Both leaders discussed Afghanistan’s security situation and India’s assistance in reconstruction efforts in the war-torn country.
- They discussed the security situation in Afghanistan, particularly in the context of post-2014 when America pulled out most of its forces from there.
- They reviewed the status of Indian assistance which confines to humanitarian and social areas.
- So far India has invested over USD 2 billion in several projects including in infrastructure and social sectors for reconstruction of Afghanistan.
- Relations between the people of Afghanistan and India traces to the Indus Valley Civilisation.
- In 1999, India became one of the key supporters of the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance.
- India’s support and collaboration extends to rebuilding of air links, power plants and investing in health and education sectors as well as helping to train Afghan civil servants, diplomats and police.
- In 2005, India proposed Afghanistan’s membership in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).
- During the 15th SAARC summit in Colombo, India pledged another $450 million alongside a further $750 million already pledged for ongoing and forthcoming projects.