Ukraine crisis: MP student spends night in bunker amidst fear of air-bombings

Ukraine crisis: MP student spends night in bunker amidst fear of air-bombings

Family fails to establish contact, spends sleepless night. Advocate mum shares her plight, seeks help from government.

ANKITA ANANDUpdated: Friday, February 25, 2022, 12:59 PM IST
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Bunker where the student spent night | FP Photo

Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): An MP student stranded in Ukraine amidst the war, spent entire Thursday night in bunkers trying to save himself from the anticipated air-bombings, he told Free Press over a phone call on Friday.

He was denied travel via Pegasus Airlines on February 22 that has left him stranded in the warzone as the airspace has been closed.

“Our local mayor issued a warning last night asking us all to switch our lights off and hide in a safe space. We didn’t know what to do. Having spent so many years here, we had heard about the bunkers. We contacted the locals and got to know their location. It was about 15 minutes away from my PG. It was 11.30 pm here (3 am IST). Four of us stayed in one bunker for hours,” says Abhas Parihar, a 5th year MBBS student in Ternopil, Ukraine.

“He texted us that he was going to hide in a bunker in the early hours today. I tried to call him. But he was unreachable. We kept trying all night and finally managed to establish contact in the morning. We were so scared and all of us could do nothing but pray,” says his mother Sunita Parihar, who practices law at Bhopal court.

Abhas and his friends returned from the bunker at around 3 am UA (7 am IST). But soon, another order was issued to repeat the process.

“When another warning came off about the air-bombings, it was too late to leave the building we were in. Our PG owners rushed to help us and told us about the bunker they have below their building. They told us all the safety measures we need to practice and hid us in their bunkers,” Abhas further adds.

He texted his mother again about hiding. She has shared a video urging the government to bring her son back.

“My son should have been in Bhopal today in my arms, not hiding from the air-bombs inside a bunker. When the Hamad International Airport explicitly said they didn’t require passengers in-transit to be vaccinated, the airlines should have allowed my son to board the plane,” says Sunita in the video.

“He was jabbed. A glitch and the hatred of airlines towards Indians has put my son’s life in jeopardy. I don’t care about the money we lost, I only need my son back. Safe,” she adds.

Abhas mentioned that the bombings have begun in many neighbouring areas that are way far from the capital or the border. The ATMs and banks are shut, grocery shops have a long queue outside them. He is relieved that he can at least inform his family his whereabouts time to time via internet, he adds.

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