Indian students hopping trains, from one border to another in Ukraine : The Tribune India

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Indian students hopping trains, from one border to another in Ukraine

Students fail to get response from Indian Embassy in Kyiv

Indian students hopping trains, from one border to another in Ukraine

Holed up near the Indian Embassy, youth head to Kyiv railway station.



Tribune News Service

Aparna Banerji

Jalandhar, February 28

Uncertainty looms for a majority of students looking to board a train from their respective destinations in Ukraine to the border in the hope of exiting the war-torn country.

Failing to get a response from the Indian Embassy in Kyiv, students stranded at a nearby school today boarded a train for Kovel in northwest Ukraine in an attempt to cross over to Poland. They had yesterday failed to board a train to Lviv, another border city.

Parents said they were sustaining on a “pouch of rice” a day. The biggest problem they faced was Ukrainians being given preference to Indians while boarding trains, forcing students to wait for long periods. At least 3,000 students spent a sleepless night at the Romanian and Polish borders. With Ukrainians having a separate queue, only 200 to 250 students were getting through to the other side daily. Crossing over largely depends on whether students have agents from universities or embassy officials to assist. Amid the mayhem, a Kapurthala student was successful in reaching Romania today.

Mehak Baweja, sister of student Shivam Baweja who boarded the train to Kovel, said: “Students walked to the Kyiv station in batches of 18 to 20 this morning. There was a huge rush for the train to Lviv and Ukrainians were given first preference. They took the only other option — train to Kovel. We made frantic calls to the embassy but to no avail. My brother is currently on his way to the Kovel border.”

Akarsh Dhingra, a management student at Poltava, has walked 80 km, spent sleepless nights and travelled back and forth from various borders. He also waited the entire night at the Lviv station and finally boarded a train to the Slovakian border this morning.

With no pass available for Indian students to cross over, he returned to Lviv. He has now boarded another train to the Shehyni border, from where he has already returned twice.

Brother Saksham said: “Students don’t know from where they will finally get the passage. It’s a never-ending spiral. But he will keep trying. It is too cold and they are surviving on biscuits.”

Silver lining: Kapurthala lad makes it

Kapurthala lad Ramanpreet Singh (22), a student of National Pirogov Memorial Medical University, Vinnytsya, crossed over to Romania after a night’s wait. His father Jagbir Singh said an agent from the university brought first and third-year students in a bus to the border and helped them cross over. “Until Saturday, Ramanpreet was in a hostel bunker,” he added.

About The Author

The Tribune News Service brings you the latest news, analysis and insights from the region, India and around the world. Follow the Tribune News Service for a wide-ranging coverage of events as they unfold, with perspective and clarity.

#indians in ukraine #russia ukraine crisis #russia ukraine war #ukraine crisis


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