Behind the scenes: How India undertook an unimaginable evacuation drive from Sumy


oi-Vicky Nanjappa


Google Oneindia News

New Delhi, Mar 09: Amidst the continuing battle in Ukraine, India confronted a Herculean activity in evacuating its nationals, particularly college students. India had again to again diplomatic engagements with Russia and Ukraine and on Tuesday all of the Indian nationals stranded at Sumy in japanese Ukraine have been evacuated.

Behind the scenes: How India undertook an impossible evacuation drive from Sumy

The journey for the 700 college students was not a straightforward one. They travelled round 175 kilometres in buses and reached Poltava, which has has not been affected by the continuing battle.

The scholars then took trains to the western borders of Ukraine after which crossed over into the neighbouring nations. “Happy to inform that we have been able to move out all Indian students from Sumy. They are currently en route to Poltava, from where they will board trains to western Ukraine.

Flights under #OperationGanga are being prepared to bring them home,” ,” Arindam Bagchi, the spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a tweet.

India was able to evacuate the students after Russia agreed to a ceasefire on Tuesday to facilitate the creation of a humanitarian corridor. The evacuation for India was not easy and on Monday, it had to abort an attempt to pull out its nationals from Sumy.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi dialled both Russian and Ukrainian Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelenskyy. He conveyed in detail to both the leaders about India’s concerns for the safety of its nationals.

This was followed by a call by Foreign Secretary, Harsh Shringla to his counterparts in Ukraine and Russia. During the calls it was finally agreed to have a cease-fire and create humanitarian corridors to ensure the safety of citizens.

In addition to this, the diplomats of India’s Permanent Mission to the United States stayed in touch with the International Committee of Red Cross. They in turn reached out to their volunteers in Ukraine who helped in the evacuation of Indians and other nationals out of Sumy.

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Story first revealed: Wednesday, March 9, 2022, 9:59 [IST]

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