PM Modi to rush 4 special envoys to evacuate Indians in Ukraine

New Delhi, first published 28 Feb 2022 at 11:09 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a high-level discussion on Monday on the situation in Ukraine and the trapped Indian students caught in the crossfire of the Russian invasion.

According to official sources, several Union ministers may travel to neighboring countries of Ukraine to oversee the evacuation of students. Hardeep Puri, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Kiren Rijiju and VK Singh are among the ministers expected to travel for the mission.

Sources suggest that Jyotiraditya Scindia will look into Romania and Moldova, Kiren Rijiju will go to Slovakia, Hardeep Singh Puri will go to Hungary and General VK Singh will be in Poland to handle the evacuation.

Meanwhile, two Air India evacuation planes from Bucharest, Romania, and Budapest, Hungary, carrying 490 Indians stranded in Ukraine, landed at Delhi airport on Sunday morning.

India began the evacuation of its residents trapped amid the Russian military incursion into Ukraine on Saturday, with the first evacuation flight, AI1944, bringing 219 people from Bucharest to Mumbai in the evening.

The second evacuation plane, AI1942, left Bucharest with 250 Indians and arrived at Delhi airport around 2:45 a.m. Sunday, authorities said. Authorities said Air India’s third evacuation plane, AI1940, took off from Budapest with 240 Indians and landed at Delhi airport around 9:20 a.m. on Sunday.

The move comes in the wake of a troubling development in Ukraine, in which Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered nuclear deterrent forces to be placed on a “special regime of combat duty”, possibly alluding to the readiness of tactical nuclear troops.

Since the start of the Russian military invasion on February 24, Ukrainian airspace has been blocked for civil aviation operations.

Read also | Ukraine-Russia war: India considers Budapest route for stranded students

Read also | Russian-Ukrainian war: Poland allows Indian evacuees to enter the country without visas

Read also | Russo-Ukrainian War: Hotlines for Indians stranded in Ukraine; check numbers by state

Last updated Feb 28, 2022 1:44 PM IST

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