“Our ties are so close because India believes in Afghanistan”
India Empire magazine’s Editor and Publisher Sayantan Chakravarty caught up with Mr Tahir Qadiry, Chargé d’Affaires, Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in India, who spoke on a range of issues—from international relations to education, trade to medical tourism, and more ...
Interview with Mr Tahir Qadiry, Chargé d’Affaires, Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in India
India Empire magazine would like to congratulate you on taking charge of the mission. Let me start by asking whether it would be fair to say that relations between India and Afghanistan are at their best ever, given the deep commitments that have been made, and the vigorous engagements that are taking place?
First of all, thank you so much for your words. The Indian-Afghanistan relationship has traditionally been a cherished and enduring one. We’ve much in common. Bollywood has played a great role in bringing us closer—an entire generation grew up on Bollywood songs. There are several actors who have over the years endeared themselves to our audience. Also, after elevating our relationship to that of a strategic partnership, things have become even better. Since 2003, India has contributed about USD 3 billion by way of aid and has designed and executed nearly 500 projects in Afghanistan. These have been executed in a way that has won over the hearts and minds of the Afghan people. One of the flagship projects has been that of building our Parliament—our house of democracy. This demonstrates the kind of importance India attaches to democracy in Afghanistan. India has built two sports stadiums. It has built a water dam. This shows India’s abiding commitment towards strengthening infrastructure in Afghanistan. H.E. our President and H.E. Prime Minister Narendra Modi have developed close ties. Let me also give you another very good example. It is not often that H.E. Prime Minister Modi tweets in a different language. Of late, he has been tweeting in two official languages of Afghanistan from his official twitter handle. That is symbolic of the depth in relationships between our two nations.