New Delhi: The Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union (JNUSU) has appealed to the university administration and the education ministry to provide necessary permissions for Afghan students, who secured admission at the university in January 2021, to travel to India.
In a letter, dated 13 August, the union said multiple such students from Afghanistan have reached out to it for assistance on an “urgent basis”.
JNUSU president Aishee Ghosh told ThePrint that final-year Afghan students also want an extension on their visas.
“While the continuing Afghan students already have their student visa and are living in India, the final-year students want an extension on their visa,” she said.
“The students selected in 2021 are yet to receive their bonafide certificates that will help them gain their student visa. These Afghani students have requested us to help them by getting the process completed as soon as possible.”
In its letter, the union said that other universities in Delhi have already helped their Afghan students.
“While other universities in Delhi have granted students in similar circumstances the required permission for their student visa, the Jawaharlal Nehru University has not given any necessary support to its students from Afghanistan,” reads the letter addressed to JNU Vice-Chancellor M. Jagadesh Kumar and the Ministry of Education.
In reference to this Ghosh added, “From our conversation with the students of South Asian University, we have gathered that after receiving a similar request from Afghan students, the university administration is in the process of getting approvals done so that they can come to India.”
Co-signed by JNUSU president Aishe Ghosh, vice-president Saket Moon and two other members of the union, the letter claimed that the students belong to both fresh and previous batches, adding that they have attempted to contact the university administration in their personal capacities to no avail.
The JNUSU also drew attention to the plight of women in the strife-ridden country and how, with the Taliban’s accelerated resurgence, they could be forced to abandon their education altogether.
“We must also bring to your attention that female students who are Afghani nationals will have to leave their education entirely if they are not provided the requisite documentation on time,” noted the letter.
ThePrint reached JNU spokesperson Poonam Kudaisya via text messages and calls for a comment but received no response until the publishing of this report. Calls to Professor Ravikesh, the university registrar, also went unanswered.
ThePrint reached the education ministry over email but is yet to receive a response.
Taliban resurgence in Afghanistan
In the past few weeks, Afghanistan has witnessed an accelerated resurgence of the Taliban as the US looks to withdraw its soldiers from the country by 11 September, after almost 20 years of war.
The Taliban have taken over 18 provincial capitals across the country, including Kandahar, the second-largest city. Some US intelligence assessments also suggest that the capital Kabul could fall to the terror group in a matter of weeks.
Amid all this, several reports have also emerged of the Taliban’s brutalities including unprovoked attacks on civilians and beheading of captured soldiers.
Women in the country remain especially vulnerable and media reports suggest that they are being forced to marry terrorists in occupied regions.
(Edited by Rachel John)