Karnal, March 3
“We were 33 students stuck in a basement for six days in a war-torn Kharkiv and had to survive on limited food and water supply. After a relaxation in the curfew on March 1, we decided to walk to the railway station so that we could move to the border. Amid chilling weather, we had to walk for eight kilometres to reach the railway station,” said Suraksha, a resident of Nigdhu village in Karnal.
Suraksha is fourth-year MBBS student in Kharkiv, who landed in Delhi today along with Subham of the same village and a fourth-year medical student in Kharkiv.
Trains packed, no place to sit
We were afraid after witnessing the devastation there. Ukrainians were not allowing Indians to board trains. The train was full with no place to sit. We stood for 24 hours to reach to the western part of Ukraine. — Suraksha, MBBS student
Students travelling sans food, water
After getting no response, we decided to move to the border at our own risk. Most students did not have food and money, but all helped each other to reach Moldova border. We had to travel for 10 kms. — Harpreet, MBBS student
“We were afraid after witnessing the devastation there. Ukrainians were not allowing Indians to board trains, but we managed somehow. The train was full with no place to sit. We stood for 24 hours to reach to the western part of Ukraine,” she said, adding that they somehow managed to hire a taxi to reach Poland border, where the Indian Government has made arrangements for evacuation.
Subham, who is still traumatised, narrates the same story. He said it was a second birth for all who have returned safely to India.
Harpreet, a fifth-year MBBS student and a resident of Basant Vihar, said he was in Odressa and had spent days in constant fear as they were not getting any response from the Indian Embassy.
“After getting no response, we decided to move to the border at our own risk. Most students did not have food and money, but all helped each other to reach Moldova border. We had to travel for 10 kilometres as there was a long queue on the border,” he added.
“Students were afraid of the constant bombardment. We had to pay extra to reach Maldova,” said Saurabh, a third-year MBBS student, who returned on March 1. He is a resident of Sector 6 here.
Meanwhile, Karnal DC Anish Yadav said of the 138 students stuck in Ukraine, 75 have returned, 39 had reached to neigbouring countries, two were on the way and 11 were still stuck in Ukraine.
“We are in touch with the family members of all students and have established a control room at the mini secretariat,” the DC added.
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