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'Leave Kharkiv Immediately': Indian Embassy in Ukraine's Back-to-Back Advisories

The advisories come a day after Naveen, a medical student, was killed in Russian shelling on Kharkiv on Tuesday.

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'Leave Kharkiv Immediately': Indian Embassy in Ukraine's Back-to-Back Advisories
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The Indian Embassy in Ukraine on Wednesday, 2 March, asked Indian nationals to leave Kharkiv – the second-most populous city of the war-hit country – at the earliest, in two urgent back-to-back advisories.

The advisories came a day after a medical student named Naveen was killed in Russian shelling on Kharkiv on Tuesday, 1 March.

"For their safety and security, they must leave Kharkiv immediately. Proceed to Pesochin, Babye, and Bazlyudovka as soon as possible. Under all circumstances, they must reach these settlements by 18:00 hours Ukranian time today," the first advisory read.

The second advisory, released shortly afterward, reiterated the deteriorating situation in Kharkiv and stressed that Indian nationals must "leave Kharkiv immediately repeat immediately."

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"Those students who cannot find vehicles or buses and are in railway station [sic] can proceed on foot to Pisochyn (11 km), Babai (12 km) and Bezlyudivka (16 km)," the second advisory added.

It also urged Indian nationals to reach these settlements by 18:00 hours (Ukrainian time) on Wednesday.

In a briefing on Wednesday evening, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said that the advisory issued by the Embassy is on the basis of information received from Russia.

"We would urge all our nationals to leave Kharkiv immediately to safe zones or further westwards using any means available, including on foot, and keeping safety in mind," MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said.

Attacks on Kharkiv

On Tuesday, a series of missile attacks launched b Russia hit Kharkiv – which is home to 1.4 million people – leaving at least 10 people dead and 35 wounded.

An administration building in the middle of Kharkiv's Freedom Square was blown up in one of the missile attacks.

The city's mayor Ihor Terekhov said that three among those who died were children.

He said on his Telegram account, "Today we had a very difficult day. It showed us that it's not just a war, this is a massacre of Ukrainian people."

Terekhov added, "The missiles hit residential buildings, killing and injuring peaceful civilians. Kharkiv has not seen such damage for a very long time. And this is horrible."

Since then, four more people were killed and nine wounded during shelling in the eastern Ukrainian city, AFP quoted the emergencies services as saying on Wednesday.

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Efforts Underway To Bring Back Indians

As many as 30 repatriation flights will operate from 2 March to 8 March between the countries neighbouring Ukraine and India, bringing back 6,300 Indians stranded in the eastern European nation, news agency PTI quoted official sources as saying.

The flights will be operated by Air India, Air India Express, IndiGo, SpiceJet, and the Indian Air Force. As per the report, 21 evacuation flights will be operated from Bucharest in Romania, and four from Budapest in Hungary.

Four more flights will be operated to bring back people from Rzeszow, Poland, and one flight from Kosice, Slovakia.

(With inputs from AFP and PTI.)

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