Russia, Feb 16: Given the ongoing military build-up on the borders of Ukraine by Russia keeping the world on its toes, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Wednesday set up a control room to provide information and assistance.
The development comes after a day the Indian embassy in Ukraine advised Indian citizens, especially the students, to temporarily leave that country given the uncertainties of the current situation.
In view of the prevailing situation in Ukraine, a Control Room has been set up at @MEAIndia to provide information and assistance:
📞Phone: 1800118797 (Toll free)
— Arindam Bagchi (@MEAIndia) February 16, 2022
Meanwhile, discussions are underway with civil aviation authorities and various airlines on how to increase the number of flights between India and Ukraine, the source said.
The Indian embassy in Kyiv said it has been receiving calls about the non-availability of flights from Ukraine to India and advised Indians not to panic, but book the earliest available and convenient flights to travel home.
“The embassy of India has been receiving several appeals about non-availability of flights from Ukraine to India. In this regard, students are advised not to resort to panic, but book the earliest available and convenient flights to travel to India,” it said in a statement.
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However, Ukrainian International Airlines, Air Arabia, Fly Dubai and Qatar Airways are operating flights at present from Ukraine.
The government is exploring the possibility of increasing the number of flights between India and Ukraine to facilitate the return of Indians from the eastern European nation.
It also asked Indian nationals to avoid all non-essential travel to and within Ukraine.
“We are aware that many Indian students are presently in Ukraine, and their families are anxious about their wards, particularly about getting flights to India,” a source said.
Russia has deployed around 100,000 troops near its border with Ukraine besides stationing warships into the Black Sea for naval exercises, triggering concerns among the NATO countries about a potential invasion of Ukraine.