There is now a genuine concern that the country would be overtaken by the Taliban in a matter of 2-3 years following the withdrawal of foreign forces and a more hard-line government will once again be back at the helm in Kabul. Too many age-old, unsolved, geo-political equations will once again come back to the fore and India, principally, will be forced to reassess its priorities in Afghanistan – this time against the paucity of time and proper support of its international allies who will have vacated the theatre by then. An unending cycle of violence will have a spill over effect across many borders that surround Afghanistan.
Key to such developments will be the political, security and economic threat that could be imposed upon India given that it has for decades supported elected Afghan governments while maintaining a distance from the Taliban. India’s support of successive governments has been steadfast since the 2001 Bonn conference, following the collapse of the Taliban regime till present. The time for New Delhi to reorient its policies towards Kabul and the Taliban is drawing near.