PM Narendra Modi phone call with President Vladimir Putin

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The Kremlin claimed Indian students in Kharkiv had been “held hostage” by Ukrainian security forces who were using them as “a human shield” to “block them from leaving for Russian territory,” only hours after its envoy to New Delhi announced Russia was working on a “humanitarian corridor” for the safe transit of trapped Indians across the Russia-Ukraine border.

prime minister Narendra Modi phone call with President Vladimir Putin

In their readout of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s phone call with President Vladimir Putin, the Russians stated this. The Indian statement, on the other hand, made no mention of this. “The leaders examined the situation in Ukraine, particularly in the city of Kharkiv, where many Indian students are stranded,” the Prime Minister’s Office stated. They talked on how to evacuate Indian people from war zones safely.”

“All required directives had been granted,” according to the Kremlin statement, “and the Russian military was doing all possible to secure the safe withdrawal of Indian people from the fighting zone and their return to their homeland.”

“The Russian side, in particular, is attempting to organize an urgent evacuation of a group of Indian students from Kharkiv (the Russian name for Kharkiv) via the humanitarian corridor along the shortest path to Russia,” the statement stated.

“At the same time, according to the most recent information, these students are being held captive by Ukrainian security forces, who are using them as a human shield and preventing them from departing for Russian territory in any manner imaginable.” “The Kyiv authorities bear all responsibility in this matter,” it stated.

“According to our knowledge, Ukrainian authorities forcefully retain a big number of Indian students in Kharkiv who seek to leave Ukrainian territory and proceed to Belgorod,” the Russian defense ministry said during a briefing in Moscow.

“In truth, they are being kept as hostages and are being offered the opportunity to flee Ukraine over the Ukrainian-Polish border.” They volunteered to travel across areas where active conflicts are taking place,” the report stated.

“The Russian military forces are prepared to take all necessary precautions to ensure the safe evacuation of Indian people.” And, as the Indian side suggested, send them home from Russian territory using its military transport planes or Indian jets,” the ministry stated.

Indian officials in New Delhi described the scenario as challenging in a combat zone where inhabitants have been hunkering down in bunkers and underground shelters, and movement is restricted due to a curfew-like condition on the streets.

A high-level meeting with key ministries and officials was also led by the Prime Minister.

Around 4,000 Indians, primarily medical students, are trapped in Ukraine’s eastern and north-eastern regions, close to the Russian border.

At a press conference in New Delhi, Russia’s ambassador-designate Denis Alipov claimed the country is working on a “humanitarian corridor” across Russian territory so that Indians may be evacuated from the combat zones in Kharkiv, Sumy, and surrounding regions.

“We have received an Indian request for the immediate evacuation of all individuals trapped there to Russian territory,” he added. “We are currently actively working on the ways and means to initiate an operation to create humanitarian corridors so that people have a safe route to the Russian land.”

“I want to offer our sympathies to the family of Naveen Shekarappa Gyanagoudar and the whole Indian country over the tragedy,” Alipov said of the death of an Indian student at Kharkiv National Medical University. Russia will do all possible to safeguard the safety of Indian people in combat zones… as well as a thorough inquiry into this regrettable situation.”

 The Indian embassy in Ukraine has requested all Indians trapped in Kharkiv to leave immediately.

Meanwhile, the Indian embassy in Ukraine has requested that all Indians trapped in Kharkiv depart immediately. The embassy asked that Indians travel to Pesochyn, Babaye, and Bezlyudovka as soon as possible.

Later, the embassy emphasized the need of leaving Kharkiv: “For their safety and security, they must leave Kharkiv immediately, repeat immediately, given the developing circumstances.” For their protection, they should travel to Pesochin, Babaye, and Bezlyudovka as quickly as possible. Students who cannot locate autos or buses and are stationed at a train station may proceed on foot. Go ahead and do it now. Indians must get in these settlements by 6 p.m. Ukrainian time today (9.30 p.m. IST) under any circumstances.”

According to reports, four IAF C-17 Globemaster planes transporting around 800 personnel from Ukraine arrive at the Hindon airfield on Thursday. A C-17 airplane sailed for Romania on Wednesday morning, bringing humanitarian assistance to Ukraine.

An Indian squad has been stationed near the Ukrainian border in the Russian city of Belgorod. Kharkiv is around 40 kilometers from the Ukraine-Russia border, and an Indian embassy staff is on its route from Kyiv to assist with the evacuation.

“Be rest assured that the S-400 purchase will not be damaged in any way,” Alipov said in New Delhi in response to a query about the likely impact of Western sanctions on the missile deal. “We will see what the eventual impact of those harsh limitations that are being imposed will be on general trade and economic cooperation,” he added. There’s no doubt about that…

“We have bilateral procedures and methods of transacting in national currencies. Because some Indian partners are overly cautious about their exposure to the US and European markets, a lot will depend on their willingness to maintain the relationship,” he added.

He said that India had maintained an “unbiased” stance based on its assessment of the situation in Ukraine rather than because it is reliant on Russian weapons. “At the United Nations, we coordinate our stances and notify India about our strategy,” he added. “We do everything possible to keep India up to know what is occurring,” Alipov added.

Published By: Khushboo Mehta

Edited By: Kritika Kashyap

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