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IAF aircraft to leave for Romania to bring back Indian citizens stranded in Ukraine

New Delhi [India], March 1 (ANI): Indian Air Force C-17 aircraft will leave for Romania at 4 am on Wednesday to bring back Indian citizens stranded in Ukraine.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked the Indian Air Force to join the evacuation efforts under Operation Ganga earlier today.

The sources said that leveraging the capacities of the Air Force will ensure that more people can be evacuated in a shorter time frame and it will also help to deliver humanitarian aid more efficiently.

The Union government has launched ‘Operation Ganga’ to bring back stranded students and Indian citizens from the conflict-torn Ukraine. Special flights are being operated by Air India, SpiceJet and Indigo as part of the ‘Operation Ganga’ mission.

All Indian nationals have left Kyiv and nearly 60 per cent of Indians in Ukraine have left the country so far, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said on Tuesday.

Shringla said at a media briefing that enquiries reveal that all Indian citizens have come out of Ukraine’s capital.

“All of our nationals have left Kyiv. The information with us is that we have no more nationals left in Kyiv, nobody has contacted us from Kyiv since. All our enquiries reveal that each and every one of our nationals have come out of Kyiv,” Shringla said at a media briefing on the evacuation of Indian citizens from Ukraine in the wake of Russia’s military operations.

He said out of an estimated 20,000 Indian citizens in Ukraine, 60 per cent have left the country since the first advisory was issued by the government.

“We had an estimated 20,000 Indian nationals in Ukraine at the time we issued our first advisory. Approximately 12,000 have left Ukraine so far, which means 60 per cent of the people have left the country. Of the remaining 40 per cent, roughly half remain in the conflict zone in Kharkiv and the other half have either reached the western border of Ukraine or are heading towards the western border. They are generally out of conflict areas,” Shringla said.

He said a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi was held on the Ukraine situation today.

“The meeting began with the expression of deep regret and condolence of the tragic death of India student Naveen Shekharappa who was studying in Ukraine. We remain very concerned about the situation in Kharkiv and other areas which are currently in the conflict zone,” he said.

The Foreign Secretary said he had called the Ambassadors of Russia and Ukraine and reiterated strongly India’s demand for urgent safe passage for all Indian nationals.

“Evacuation of Kharkiv is now our top priority,” Shringla said. The seventh flight carrying 182 Indian nationals stranded in Ukraine reached Mumbai from Romania’s Bucharest as part of Operation Ganga on Tuesday. (ANI)

This report is auto-generated from ANI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Source: The Print

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