Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala’s government has no role in bringing back four widows of Islamic State fighters from the state who are imprisoned in Afghanistan, and it is a matter for the Centre to decide, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Monday.
In response to a question about the Centre’s alleged lack of interest in bringing them back to India, Vijayan told reporters here that it was a matter for the Centre to decide and that the state government had nothing to do with it.
According to him, a stance on the matter is required because it is a national issue.
The chief minister also stated that women from the state are imprisoned in Afghanistan “It is necessary to determine whether they are willing to travel to India. It’s also a good idea to get their family’s take on things.”
Vijayan stated that the Centre should make a decision after considering all of these factors.
On March 15, last year, a Delhi-based website released a video purportedly showing four Keralite women, Nimisha Fathima, Rafeela, Soniya Sebastian, and Merrin Jacob, expressing their desire to return to India.
The women were allegedly heard saying in the video that they were living among several fighters and other families who had surrendered to the Afghan government in 2019 after their husbands were killed.
The mother of Nimisha Fathima has expressed hope that the Centre will pardon her daughter and return her to India.
She was responding to reports that the Central Government was allegedly unwilling to return her daughter and three other IS widows of Indian origin who were being held in a Kabul jail.