Tuesday, March 08, 2022

Last flight from Poland in: Stopped even for stragglers, says minister

New Delhi: Along with the Indian student Harjot Singh who sustained bullet injuries in Ukraine, a grey C-17 globemaster aircraft brought back 201 people and at least two dogs from the war-torn country on Monday, completing all evacuations through the Polish border. Three lights in the hazy sky seen at around 06:10 pm announced the arrival of the flight at Hindon airport.

Over 3,000 Indians have been evacuated through Poland under Operation Ganga.

As soon as the aircraft parked alongside eight other C-17s and a smaller white aircraft, an ambulance reached it. The ambulance took Singh directly to the Army’s Research and Referral hospital in Dhaula Kuan.

“Harjot is okay. There was some delay in getting him out as there was an attack on Vinnytsia airport because of which there was a heavy jam. After a lot of effort, our embassy in Ukraine was able to get him out. They reached the airport at around 04:30 am,” said minister VK Singh who also returned on the same flight. He was in Poland to coordinate the evacuation of Indian citizens. Many aboard the flight on Monday were from the eastern city of Kharkiv that was being bombed heavily.

He further said, “He has been sent to the Research and Referral hospital for treatment. No one can treat bullet wounds better than the army hospital.”

He added that embassy officials have been left behind at the border in case more people reach there. Now, Indians from most Ukranian cities have been evacuated, barring the north-eastern city of Sumy.

“By the time this flight took off, we had evacuated 3,000 children. No more people were coming. Even for the stragglers, we stopped the aircraft. It is possible that there are some children who did not come, so at the border check-post there are people from the embassy so that if someone comes they can be brought home. There is no announcement on any windup of the operations. But I was to bring back all students who reached us till the end. So, I have taken the last flight from Poland,” said VK Singh.

08/03/22 Anonna Dutta/Indian Express

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