Air Force C-17s called on by PM Modi to boost Ukraine evacuation
New Delhi, Mar 01: In a bid to step up the evacuation of Indians from Ukraine, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called in the Indian Air Force, sources tell OneIndia.
India has already taken various measures to step up evacuation efforts from the war hit Ukraine. With the IAF joining in the evacuation process would be further ramped up.
The PM feels that leveraging the capabilities of India's Air Force will ensure that more people can be evacuated from Ukraine in a shorter time frame. This would also help deliver humanitarian aid more effectively, the PM said.
The source also said that the IAF is likely to deploy several C-17 aircrafts as part of Operation Ganga.
The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by PM Modi last evening. He told the meeting that the government was working round the clock and leaving no stone unturned to ensure that all Indians are evacuated safely from Ukraine.
Earlier, PM Modi met with President, Ramnath Kovind today amidst the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. During the meeting, the PM briefed the President about the various issues including the Ukraine crisis.
Following the Russian military offensive against Ukraine, India has brought back over 1,000 stranded citizens from that country since Saturday when the first evacuation flight from Bucharest with 219 people on board landed in Mumbai under Operation Ganga.
As many as 688 Indian nationals returned here on Sunday from strife-torn Ukraine on board three Air India evacuation flights from Romanian capital Bucharest and Hungarian capital Budapest.
Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said that approximately 13,000 Indians are stranded in Ukraine as of now, and the government is making efforts to bring them back as soon as possible.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a series of meetings including in which it was decided four union ministers would visit countries bordering Ukraine to oversee the evacuation.
Union Ministers Hardeep Puri, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Kiren Rijiju and Gen. V K Singh will travel to neighbouring countries of Ukraine to coordinate the evacuation mission and help students. These Ministers have gone as Special Envoys of India.