Afghan MP deported from India back to Istanbul despite diplomatic passport

An Afghan lawmaker of Turkmen origin has been sent back to Istanbul from the Delhi airport despite holding a diplomatic passport that allows visa-travel to India. She and her family had arrived in Istanbul at the end of July.

Rangina Kargar.

Duvar English

An Afghan parliamentarian has been deported to Istanbul from India despite holding a diplomatic passport that allows traveling to other countries without visas, Indian Express newspaper reported on Aug. 26.

Rangina Kargar, a Turkmen born in Mazar-e-Sharif in 1985, is a lawmaker from Afghanistan’s Faryab province. She said that she landed in India from Turkey on Aug. 20, five days after the Taliban's takeover of the country, but was returned from New Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport.

Kargar, who had a doctor’s appointment at a Delhi hospital, said that she waited 16 hours at the Delhi airport – between 6 am and 10 pm – before she was sent back to Istanbul.

“They deported me, I was treated as a criminal. I was not given my passport in Dubai. It was given back to me only in Istanbul,” 36-year-old Kargar said.

“It was not good what they did to me. The situation has changed in Kabul and I hope the Indian government helps Afghan women,” she said.

Indian authorities at the airport have given Kargar no reason for her deportation, but she said that “it was probably related to the changed political situation in Kabul, maybe security.”

India Express quoted her as saying that she will remain in Istanbul and wait for the Taliban to form the government and “see if they allow women to sit in Parliament.”

Kargar said that it is now impossible for her and her family to return back to Afghanistan due to the takeover of the Taliban. Her family had arrived in Istanbul at the end of July.

Kargar is not affiliated to any political party and describes herself as a women’s rights activist.

Meanwhile, the Indian government released a statement on Aug. 26 with regards to the deportation of Kargar, saying it was an inadvertent error.

It reached out to Kargar and “apologised” for what happened. It also asked her to apply for an emergency visa, Indian Express reported.