Why and how Indian students are returning to Ukraine despite ongoing war | Explained News,The Indian Express

Months after they fled Ukraine at the height of the conflict with Russia, many Indian students are now heading back to the war-torn country. A look at why they are choosing to return.

Monday, Sep 19, 2022

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HomeExplainedWhy and how Indian students are returning to Ukraine despite ongoing war


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Why and how Indian students are returning to Ukraine despite ongoing war

Months after they fled Ukraine at the height of the conflict with Russia, many Indian students are now heading back to the war-torn country. A look at why they are choosing to return.











Written by Divya Goyal
, Edited by Explained Desk
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Ludhiana | Updated: September 17, 2022 9:32:04 pm



































Students back at Vinnitsya National Medical University.Seven months after the Russia-Ukraine war forced nearly 20,000 Indian students, most of them studying medicine in Ukraine, to return home to India, many are now making the journey back to their colleges in the war-torn European country, even as the war continues. More Indian students are expected to head back to Ukraine in coming weeks after the government of India told the Supreme Court that they cannot be accommodated in Indian colleges and universities. A look at how and why Indian students are choosing to head back to the war-ravaged country.

At the height of the war, the students had mostly left Ukraine after crossing the borders of Poland, Hungary, Slovakia or Romania, but now, as they return, they have been doing so via Moldova, a small country to the southwest of Ukraine. With the airspace over Ukraine still closed, the students have been taking a connecting flight from Delhi, with an eight-hour layover at Istanbul (Turkey), which takes them to Chisinau, the capital of Moldova. From there, they further take a bus to get across the border, and thereafter another bus to the city where they study. Most of the students have been returning to western Ukraine cities such as Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and Vinnytsia which, they say, are “comparatively safer” and away from war zones. However, some students have also started returning to Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital.

Why the Moldova route?

Students say that returning to Ukraine via Moldova is the easiest and most hassle-free option available currently because the country has been issuing e-visas. “One just has to apply online and we get the visa within 3-7 days. Other neighbouring countries such as Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania have cumbersome visa processes. Visa applications of many students have been rejected by these countries. These countries offer Schengen visa which takes too much time and is mostly rejected. Moldova, on the other hand, is offering e-visa, both in transit and tourist categories, which is approved within days and is also cheaper,” said a student who has returned via Moldova.

Students are now spending close to Rs 1 lakh for returning to Ukraine and this includes air ticket cost, visa and other miscellaneous expenses. However, some agents are charging students as much as Rs 15,000 to Rs 25,000 for arranging visas for Moldova. Kritee Suman, a student who returned via Moldova, says, “The air ticket can cost at least 60k and the visa fee for Moldova is 60 Euros (Rs 4,700 approximately). Even if we add other expenses, a visa cannot cost more than Rs 10k so students should apply on their own instead of paying agents who are fleecing students. I spent around Rs 1 lakh on my return trip to Ukraine.”

https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/indian-medican-students-ukraine-war-explained-8156765/


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