US Afghan pullout: India reaches out to Tajikistan With an eye on withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan starting July 2011, India has reaffirmed its bilateral ties with Tajikistan. During a four-day visit to Tajikistan this month, Army Chief General V K Singh offered a field ambulance unit, military training in counter-terrorism and mountain warfare, and more seats for officersâ€™ training in India. General Singh, the first Indian Army Chief to visit Tajikistan, was in Dushanbe from November 13 to 16. At a chance meeting with General Bismillah Khan Mohammadi, Chief of Staff of Afghan National Army, he exchanged notes on increasing Taliban footprints in Northern Afghanistan, particularly Badakshan province. The two military chiefs discussed the threat from Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists in Afghanistan and the scenario post-US Army withdrawal. US President Barack Obama has stuck to the July 2011 deadline to begin the pullout from Kabul. An ethnic Tajik and also the Afghan Interior Minister, General Bismillah Khan was undergoing medical treatment in Tajikistan. In Dushanbe, the Army Chief offered a field ambulance unit for the Tajik Army that had last month lost some 60 men to skirmishes with Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan terrorists in Rasht Valley, bordering the restive Ferghana Valley in Central Asia. The field ambulance unit comprises some 70-odd medical personnel to provide surgical and medical back-up on the front. India is already helping operate a hospital in Farkhor, just two kilometres from the Tajik-Afghan border, across the Amu Darya river.