When Central govt was aware of developments, why didn't they bring students earlier from Ukraine, asks Mamata Banerjee

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Wednesday, March 02, 2022, 04:58 PM IST
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WB CM Mamata Banerjee | Photo: PTI

Even as Governnent of India continues to evacuate stranded Indians prominantly students from war torn Ukraine, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday targeted the Central government asking when the Govt was aware of developments, why didn't they bring the students earlier.

India has launched Operation Ganga to evacuate its nationals. The union government is planning to operate 26 flights in the next three days to evacuate the Indian nationals. According to an estimate, total 18,000 student are stranded in war-torn Ukraine.

Ms Banerjee said, "Somebody died, some people are moving from here & there. somebody is waiting in bunkers, somebody is waiting in Romania, somebody is not getting food. They search for food & get killed." She also asked, "When the Govt was aware of developments, why didn't they bring the students earlier?"

"I don't want to criticise govt, especially for matter of external affairs, because we're one. But sometimes I've seen that external affairs matter, because of some coordination gap & political business, we're lagging behind and our students are stuck there," the CM of West Bengal added.

Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Singhla on Tuesday said that so far 12,000 Indians have been evacuated from Ukraine, which is 60 per cent of country's total population in the war-ravaged nation.

Meanwhile, SpiceJet will operate special evacuation flights from Kosice in Slovakia on March 3 and 4 and from Bucharest in Romania on March 4 and 6 to bring back home Indian nationals stranded in Ukraine.

The airline will use its Boeing 737 MAX aircraft for these special flights. SpiceJet will operate ferry flights to Kosice on March 2 and 3 from Delhi and to Bucharest from Delhi and Amritsar on March 4 and 5.

The airline has already operated two evacuation flights under 'Operation Ganga'.

SpiceJet's evacuation flight from Budapest with Indian students will be arriving at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi at 6.30 pm today.

This comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday deputed four Union Ministers to neighbouring countries of Ukraine to coordinate evacuations of stranded Indians amid ongoing Russian military operations in Ukraine.

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