A number of Indian students attempting to escape war-ridden Ukraine were stopped, harassed, and beaten at the country's border with Poland indicate several videos circulated on social media. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, sharing one such video, appealed to the government to share their evacuation plan with those stranded.
"My heart goes out to the Indian students suffering such violence and their family watching these videos. No parent should go through this. GOI must urgently share the detailed evacuation plan with those stranded as well as their families. We can’t abandon our own people," he tweeted.
In the video shared by Gandhi, guards in uniforms can be seen manhandling a few students, including girls, in the border area, where sounds of gun shots can also be heard. The students are pinned to the ground and can be heard screaming.
In another video whose veracity could not be independently verified, a student alleges that the Ukrainian border guards were hindering the exit of Indian students into Poland, and were accusing India of not helping Ukraine.
"Indian students are being tortured. They are not allowing us to cross over to Poland. Even women students are being harassed. They are being pulled by their hair and hit with rods. Some women students have suffered fractures and injuries," an Indian student in Ukraine told NDTV.
Around 16,000 students are estimated to be stranded in Ukraine. Most of them are students who have gone to Ukraine to study medicine.
An Air India flight had conveyed 219 students stranded in Ukraine to Mumbai on Saturday. Another flight from Bucharest had carried 250 Indian nationals, including many students, to Delhi on Sunday. Five such flights have operated so far. Further evacuation effort are underway, under Operation Ganga by the government of India.
Indian students in Ukraine have been asked to travel to the borders of the neighbouring Poland, Romania, and Hungary in order for evacuation.
In a welcome gesture, Poland is allowing Indian students who escape from Russian aggression in Ukraine to enter Poland without any visa, Ambassador of Poland to India Adam Burakowski announced.
Meanwhile, fighting is underway in Ukraine where Russian troops continue their military invasion of the resisting country. The delegations of the two nations are scheduled to meet for talks on Monday.
Round-the-clock helplines for Indians in Ukraine: