Former Afghan prime minister and Hizb-e-Islami party chief Gulbuddin Hekmatyar has warned India against giving asylum to those who have links with the previous Afghan government. In an interview given to a channel, he said that if India does this, the Taliban will also respond in the same way. Hekmatyar is known as the ‘Butcher of Kabul’. He is also being seen as a powerful player under the Taliban regime.
This answer was given on the issue of Kashmir
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar said in an interview to CNN-News18 that if India’s giving asylum to the Taliban’s opponents creates any apprehension, then they should refrain from giving such asylum. He said that “India, by giving political asylum to the opposition of the incoming Afghan government and giving them a platform to conduct activities against the government, will force the Taliban to do the same thing.” Along with this, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar clearly said on the issue of Kashmir that Afghanistan and its new rulers are not interested in interfering in the Kashmir issue. He also said that it would be easier to use Afghan soil against Pakistan than against India.
India should make up for the historical mistakes
He said that “I would also like to emphasize that the soil of Afghanistan can be used more effectively against its neighbors than against non-neighboring countries. India should not have such apprehension.” Gulbuddin Hekmatyar said that “India should reconsider its failed policies regarding Afghanistan and compensate for its historical blunders of supporting the two occupiers (Soviet Union and US).”
Hekmatyar and his army of the Pakistan-backed Hizb-e-Islami guerrilla group are accused of killing thousands of civilians during the siege of Kabul between 1992 and 1996. However, 72-year-old Hekmatyar was pardoned by the then President Ashraf Ghani in 2017. Gulbuddin Hekmatyar was also the Prime Minister of Afghanistan twice in a short tenure of about one year each, from June 1993 and June 1996.
Hekmatyar in an important role in forming the new government
Hekmatyar has survived all the dangers in Afghan politics. During the Cold War, he was part of the mujahideen who were trained by the US to fight the Soviet Union. Since then he has been both friend and foe of the Taliban for the past three decades. After 9/11, the US declared him a ‘global terrorist’ for his open support to al-Qaeda. When the US started the war in Afghanistan, Hekmatyar took refuge in Pakistan with the blessings of his patrons in the ISI. In 2017, Hizb-e-Islami leader Hekmatyar Ashraf returned to Kabul after reaching an agreement with the Ghani government. Hekmatyar contested the presidential election in the year 2019 against Ashraf Ghani, in which he was defeated. He is currently participating in discussions with Taliban leaders, Hamid Karzai and other heads of state to form a new government in Kabul.