After Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his troops inside the Ukrainian territory on February 24, stranded Indians looked towards the Ministry of External Affairs for the evacuation process to begin. Almost 12,000 Indians left Ukraine since the first advisory was issued by the Indian government last month. Moreover, not a single Indian is left in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv. Prime Minister Narendra Modi "has spoken to the leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Romania, Slovak Republic and Poland regarding safety and facilitation of evacuation of Indian nationals from Ukraine" and several other flights, including those from the Indian Air Force, are being sent to the war-ridden country.
More Than 600 Students Stranded In Ukraine
However, students in the northeastern city of Sumy have struggled to receive an update on the date and time for their evacuation. Viraj Walde, one of the Indians stuck in the city, told the Indian media over the phone that not a single Indian from Sumy State University had been evacuated. He said, "More than 600 Indian students are stuck here in Sumy university. The embassy has neither evacuated us nor given any assurance to that effect. Since the last five days, there has been continuous firing, shelling and bombing in the city," he said. Their final exams were about to start from March 15", NDTV reported.
Food And Drinking Water Supplies Depleting
Walde said that after the temporary advisories were issued for evacuation before the Russian operation began, the University asked the students who had exams pending to wait. Thus, the Indian students remained. However, with rapid escalation underway, students are terrified, and their mental state is deteriorating. The conditions are becoming worse by the day as food and drinking water supplies are rapidly depleting ATMs are running out of cash.
Even though the Indian embassy has sent ambassadors to inform students to leave the city only through the western borders of the country, which provide a gateway to countries like Poland, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia and Moldova, students in Sumy are not able to evacuate since the city lies in the northeastern part of Ukraine. Therefore, they can't move to the western side under the prevailing conditions.