2,320 Kerala students in Ukraine: CM Pinarayi Vijayan seeks Centre's help

Pinarayi, Jayashankar
Pinarayi Vijayan and S Jaishankar.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has requested the central government's intervention to ensure the safety of students from the state stranded in Ukraine, which is engaged in a military confrontation with Russia.

The chief minister said there are 2,320 students belonging to Kerala in the eastern European nation.

Vijayan, in a letter on Thursday, requested to Union Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar to make necessary arrangements for the return of these students by special flights.

“We are seriously concerned with the present situation in Ukraine, and worried about the safety of our students pursuing education in that country. … Many of the students are staying back as they do not want a break in their studies. I am writing this letter to request the kind intervention of your goodself with the authorities in that country for ensuring the safety of our students,” the chief minister says in the letter.

Two students from Kerala, who are stuck in Ukraine, told Manorama News TV that they could hear sirens from distant places. “We could hear scary sirens from all around our place. We were told to sit at home. We are worried,” one of them said.

The other student hoped the Indian government would step in quickly to solve the crisis. “We cannot go back home because of the unaffordable fares. Hope our governments will help us,” he said.

The Indian embassy has asked Indians in that country to maintain calm and remain safe wherever they are. The Indian embassy issued a fresh advisory as Russia carries out a military operation in Ukraine, triggering a major confrontation between the two sides.

"The present situation in Ukraine is highly uncertain. Please maintain calm and remain safe wherever you are, be it in your homes, hostels, accommodations or in transit," the Indian embassy said.

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