'If Anything Happens, It Will Be Govt's Failure': Indians in Sumy Head to Border

The Russian military announced a temporary ceasefire in two areas of Ukraine, Mariupol, and Volnovakha.

2 min read

"We are afraid. We have waited a lot and and we cannot wait anymore. We are risking our life; we are moving towards the border. If anything happens to us, all the responsibility will be of the government and Indian Embassy."

This is what students of the Sumy State University, located in a town 40 kilometres away from Ukraine’s north-east border, said in a video message on Saturday, 5 March, as the Russian invasion of Ukraine entered its tenth day.

In a breakthrough, the Russian military announced a temporary ceasefire in two areas of Ukraine – Mariupol and Volnovakha – to allow civilians to evacuate on Saturday.

In light of this news, distressed students from Sumy State University headed towards the humanitarian corridors initiated by Moscow, saying that "if anything happens to them, it will be the failure of Operation Ganga".

Meanwhile, addressing a press conference on Saturday, the spokesperson for Ministry of External Affairs, Arindham Bagchi claimed that the Indian students were 'safe in the campus'.

"Problem is in Sumy. We strongly urge both sides for a ceasefire, hope it happens soon as there is shelling, can risk lives. Indian students are safe in the campus... We have our teams now moving towards the east... Problem is shelling," Bagchi stated.

A day earlier, the students said that the Indian embassy had informed that 130 buses would be operating at the Belgorod border in Russia, around 64 kilometres from the hostel.

"But we are not getting permission from the Ukrainian government," a student stated.

The Ukrainian authorities have asked the students to stay indoors due to the curfew that has been imposed in Sumy.

While evacuations have been carried out in the western part of Ukraine, with people fleeing to Poland and Slovakia, the same has not been possible in the eastern side due to heavy fighting and lack of transportation options.

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