"The attack on the Afghanistan Parliament is a despicable and cowardly act. There is no place for such attacks in a democracy," Modi tweeted.

"My prayers are with those injured. We stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Afghanistan in this hour," he said in another tweet.

Taliban militants attacked the Afghan Parliament this morning, with gunfire and explosions rocking the building, sending Lawmakers running for cover in chaotic scenes relayed live on television.

The insurgents tried to storm the complex after triggering a car bomb but were repelled and have taken position in a partially-constructed building nearby, officials said.

All the Members of Parliament were safely evacuated after the attack, which came as the Afghan President's nominee for the crucial post of Defence Minister was to be introduced in the Parliament.

A group of suicide attackers last tried to storm the Parliament in 2012 as they launched coordinated attacks in several parts of the capital, including several diplomatic enclaves.

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