Kabul: Seven Indian engineers working in Afghanistan have been abducted, the local media reported today. The engineers were working on a power plant in Baghlan province, located in north Afghanistan, reported news agency Reuters.
- The engineers were travelling to a government-run power station
- They were kidnapped by unidentified gunmen on the way, say police
- India's Foreign Ministry says they are in contact with Afghan officials
They, along with their Afghan driver, were abducted by unknown gunmen while travelling to a government-run power station on Sunday, Reuters quoted a police spokesman as saying. The engineers were working for Da Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat (DABS), it said.
Baghlan Governor Abdulhai Nemati said the Taliban had kidnapped the engineers and moved them to Pul-e Khumri, 230 kilometres from Kabul. He said that when they contacted the Taliban, the terrorist group said they abducted the seven people assuming they were Afghan government employees, news agency IANS reported.
Mr Nemati said they are trying to rescue the engineers with the help of tribal elders.
The Ministry of External Affairs has confirmed the kidnapping of the seven Indian engineers. "We are aware of the abduction of Indian nationals from Baghlan province in Afghanistan. We are in contact with the Afghan authorities and further details are being ascertained," a spokesperson of the foreign ministry said.
RPG Enterprises chairman Harsh Goenka asked the government to rescue the kidnapped engineers.
India has been involved for long in trying to help with the economic development in the war-raved nation. Since 2001, the government has pledged at least $2 billion towards that effort since 2001.
Last year, New Delhi announced that it would take up 116 "high impact community developmental projects" across 31 provinces of Afghanistan.
With inputs from agencies