India on Thursday said it has not received any report of a hostage situation regarding Indian students in Kharkiv and that it has requested the support of Ukrainian authorities in arranging special trains for taking students out from the city and neighbouring areas.
India’s comments came hours after Russia claimed that some Indian students in Kharkiv were taken hostage by Ukrainian security forces.
“Our Embassy in Ukraine is in continuous touch with Indian nationals in Ukraine. We note that with the cooperation of the Ukrainian authorities, many students have left Kharkiv yesterday,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said.
“We have not received any report of any hostage situation regarding any student. We have requested the support of the Ukrainian authorities in arranging special trains for taking out students from Kharkiv and neighbouring areas to the western part of the country,” he said.
India had asked Russia to facilitate the safe passage of Indians from various conflict zones after the killing of an Indian student in shelling in Kharkiv on Tuesday. Bagchi said India has been coordinating effectively with the countries in the region including Russia, Romania, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and Moldova for evacuation of Indians from Ukraine.
“A large number of Indian nationals have been evacuated from Ukraine in the last few days,” he said. “We appreciate the help extended by the Ukrainian authorities to make this possible. We thank Ukraine’s western neighbours for receiving Indian nationals and for accommodating them while they waited for flights to take them back home,” he added.