India’s ministry of external affairs (MEA) has mobilised its officials in Hungary, Poland, Slovak Republic and Romania for evacuation of Indian citizens from Russian invasion-hit Ukraine. 

MEA teams in the countries of Hungary, Poland, Slovak Republic and Romania have been dispatched to the land borders with Ukraine to ‘assist’ in evacuation of Indian citizens from Ukraine. 

Over 15,000 Indian students have been left stranded in invasion-hit Ukraine, who need immediate evacuation. 

India’s evacuation arrangements, on Thursday, hit a major setback after the Ukrainian government closed its airspace following announcement of a full-scale invasion of Ukraine by Russian President Vladimir Putin. 

Also read: Meghalaya students left stranded in Russian invasion-hit Ukraine

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Meanwhile, the Indian embassy in Ukraine’s capital – Kyiv has written to the Ukrainian government urging safety and security of Indian students in the country. 

“We will handle the evacuation with utmost precaution. Roadways have been mapped out to evacuate Indian nationals from Kyiv and reach safer places,” India’s foreign secretary Harsh V Shringla said.

“We are in touch with the ministry of defence to keep provision for airlift (of Indians) capacity, in regard to the situation in Ukraine,” foreign secretary Harsh V Shringla said.

The Indian foreign secretary further said that external affairs minister S Jaishankar is expected to speak to the Ukrainian foreign minister on Thursday.

He added: “Our Embassy in Ukraine continues to be functional. A number of advisories have been issued by embassies on the situation as it evolves. We’re consulting universities, student contractors in the process of providing welfare and safety of our students.”

“A number of steps have been taken to deal with the emerging situation in Ukraine. We started the registration of Indian nationals in Ukraine about a month ago. Based on online registration, we found that 20,000 Indian nationals were there,” India’s foreign secretary Harsh V Shringla said.

“4000 Indian nationals have already left Ukraine in the past few days,” he added.

Notably, Russian ground forces, on Thursday morning, ‘invaded’ Ukraine from several directions just minutes after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced launch of a major “military operation”. 

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