Help Us! We Are Stuck at Bangladesh Border Amid COVID-19 Outbreak
Video Editor: Deepthi Ramdas
I, along with other MBBS students, am studying in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Due to the coronavirus outbreak, several travel restrictions have been imposed, including closure of schools and colleges. We too were told to go home but unfortunately, the Petrapole-Benapole land port is closed. We reached here on 23 March, at around 6 pm after travelling for 12 to 16 hours from Dhaka.
As of 24 March, we are still stuck here at the border, without food for 12 hours. Home seems far away. Including myself, around 70 Kashmiri students are stranded at the India-Bangladesh border. Where do we go?
We have tried making requests to the authorities but our distress calls have fallen on deaf ears. Early in the afternoon, there was ruckus at the junction as some were being allowed to pass. So why not us?
We appeal to the government of India to evacuate us from here as soon as possible like they did for Indian citizens in other countries like China and Iran.
We request that a flight to Delhi be arranged for us. If we can’t do that today (24 March), we won’t even be able to take a domestic flight, we’ll be stuck here and even Bangladesh might be locked down soon.
Our parents are worried about us. We are receiving endless calls asking what we are doing next. We request the Home Ministry and the Ministry of External Affairs to send help.
Government Sources’ Response to The Quint
Government sources told The Quint that in view of the advisory on restrictions in movement from other countries to India as well as within the country, border crossings are suspended. Therefore, the students are advised to go back to their hostel for the sake of their own as well as the community’s health and safety.
The sources further say the college’s principal has denied reports that students were asked to vacate the hostel and has confirmed they will be accommodated there.
The sources say that the students reached the border despite advise against the same by the High Commission of India in Bangladesh and knowing fully well the restrictions in force in India due to COVID-19.
(All 'My Report' branded stories are submitted by citizen journalists to The Quint. Though The Quint inquires into the claims/allegations from all parties before publishing, the report and the views expressed above are the citizen journalist's own. The Quint neither endorses, nor is responsible for the same.)