A person from Kolkata had filed a petition at Home Ministry against Tamal Bhattacharya, who was recently evacuated from Afghanistan, for praising the Taliban. According to reports, in the petition, one Raj Choudhury has stated that Bhattacharya praised the Taliban for their ‘good food’ and ‘playing cricket’. The petition further read that such praises of a terrorist organization are problematic. The grievance cell of the Home Ministry has accepted the application.
Raj Choudhury has also requested the home ministry keep Tamal Bhattacharya under watch, because it is possible that he has been sent by the Taliban to spy on India, he writes in the petition. He said that Tamal has posted several photographs of himself with the Taliban, and he has said he was treated well by the Jihadi organisation, which means he may have links with the group.
34-years-old Bhattacharya was one of the ten Bengalis who were successfully evacuated by the Government of India from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Afghanistan. After his evacuation to India, he had claimed that he had escaped death by leaving Afghanistan but also praised the Taliban for being “trustworthy.” He had been working as a physics and chemistry teacher at an army school (Kardan International school) in Kabul since March this year. He is a mechanical engineer by training and was living in the staff quarters of his school in Afghanistan. After the Taliban took over, he locked himself up inside the residence of the principal.
Tamal had pleaded Indian Govt for help
In a statement, he had alleged that he contacted the Indian embassy but could not reach the Hamid Karzai International airport despite several attempts. On Friday at around 11 PM, he managed to reach the gate of the airport, but the US security forces allegedly returned him due to the unavailability of government officials and documents. While speaking to Anandabazaar Patrika, he said, “Please Modiji, Amit Shah der apna ra bolun, jate amader kotha bhebe druto kono bebosta kora hoi (Please inform PM Modi and Amit Shah so that immediate action is taken for our evacuation).”
Tamal praised the Taliban after returning back to India
Reports suggest that he claimed that the Taliban not only treated him well but also provided him good food. “They (Talibs) also played cricket with us,” he claimed. This is despite the fact that he had earlier pleaded with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah to evacuate him immediately from Taliban-controlled Kabul.
In an interview with TV9 Bangla, Tamal claimed that he ‘escaped’ death by leaving Afghanistan but also praised the Taliban for being ‘trustworthy’. “We thought they (Talibs) would capture us and kill us… This fear remained with me for 5-6 hours until we were rescued from my school to the Kardan International school. We chatted with the owner of the school and the Talibs present there. They assured us that there was nothing to fear. They said that they would protect us. They promised to guard me and all other teachers…And the truth is that the Taliban kept their promise.”
Tamal was praised by Islamist radicals and fundamentalists for speaking the “truth about Islam”. On the other hand, several netizens questioned his doublespeak.