The Kafkaesque world of Afghanistan

Image source: Reuters

While the world’s largest democracy was celebrating its 75 glorious years of existence, an ode to its magnanimous struggle against an empire on which the sun never sets, not far from New Delhi, an ancient city in ruins was aghast with silence, the city of Kabul was in deep slumber unnerved by its new rulers

Amidst shrieks and cries, Afghanistan marked one year of America’s departure from the fabled land where even angels refused to tread. For an average Afghan life not just changed but got upended. With its entire top leadership still under sanction and the regime still lacking global recognition, there is no help that could change the dreadfulness called life for an average Afghan. While it is true that the Taliban government collected an estimated revenue of 400 million dollars, it is equally true that a large part of it stemmed from the illegal opium trade and reportedly the economy has significantly shrunk by 30-40% since the Taliban took over.

As a result, joblessness and associated penury dominate. People are forced to sell their children to meet two meals, women are being forced into prostitution, lot of them are taken as sex slaves by Taliban fighters

Women are the worst hit by the Taliban takeover. Over 1.1 million girls are out of school and the female labour force participation ratio that increased to 22% from 15% in the age when the US was in charge again fell to single digits!

Taliban’s hollow promise of building an equitable society is as real as its new ministry of vice and virtue’s aim to build a better tomorrow for all. The votaries of the Taliban’s usual argument is the reduction of violence vis a vis the pre-Taliban regime.

That claim is also untrue. In the last 6 months, more than 2000 people have lost their lives in cross-fighting between the Taliban and IS(K) which continues to wreak havoc in the country. Not to forget, the UN mission in Afghanistan report of exacerbated extrajudicial killings, arbitrary arrests and detention paint a sordid picture of Afghanistan’s present. The same report extolls a grim prospect of 40 million afghans facing the risk of death and doom

To top this, the recent drone strike on Zawahiri in a Kabul safe house exposes the Taliban’s duality on terrorism and their brazen lack of truth visa vis ties with Al Qaeda anything this would make international recognition far more difficult and almost impossible anytime soon

While The United States was leaving Afghanistan, the horrifying event of Zaki Anwari, the young footballer falling to his death shocked everyone’s conscience, the world didn’t make sense to him. It’s one year from now and Roya an ethnic Hazara girl’s parents were recently slaughtered and she was sold to the highest bidder in the weekly market. Not just for Zaki and Roya, but for millions of Afghans ever since the Taliban took over, the life is same, a new crisis befalls every day, new chaos comes with an evil face, and there is no way they can fight it or even run away from it, the world for them is Kafkaesque, with no help or solution in sight.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team

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Nikhil Khare

Nikhil Khare is an Indian RTS Officer

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