Russia-Ukraine war: Chandigarh student braved 10km walk to reach border for evacuation

Published on Mar 04, 2022 03:13 AM IST

The throes of the Russia-Ukraine war is making Indian students hit rough weather; knocked sideways, Sadhav Gambhir, 21, a Chandigarh resident pursuing MBBS in the war-torn Ukraine had to walk around 10 kilometres to reach the border and cross into Romania in order to get himself evacuated

Sadhav Gambhir is among a few students of tricity who have returned in the past few days from Ukraine.
Sadhav Gambhir is among a few students of tricity who have returned in the past few days from Ukraine.
By, Chandigarh

The throes of the Russia-Ukraine war is making Indian students hit rough weather.

Knocked sideways, Sadhav Gambhir, 21, a Chandigarh resident pursuing MBBS in the war-torn Ukraine had to walk around 10 kilometres to reach the border and cross into Romania in order to get himself evacuated.

Detailing the ordeal, Sadhav, who lives in Sector 45-B, said they had to arrange the transportation on their own. Sadhav is among a few students of tricity who have returned in the past few days from Ukraine.

An MBBS third-year student, Sadhav is studying at Ivano-Frankivsk National Medical University. On February 24, a Russian missile reportedly hit the airport in Ivano-Frankivsk. “On that day we could see the smoke from the window of my friend’s residence,” he said, adding that he along with his friends arranged a bus and started travelling on February 26 towards the border.

The students said chaos and long queues made it tougher to cross the border as thousands were fleeing the country.

“There was kilometres-long traffic jam at the border as the vehicles lined up. We had no option but to walk around 10 kms to reach the border. We reached the border on February 26 evening but could only cross it the next morning,” he said.

Sadhav further said on February 24, there was chaos on the ground and sirens also started wailing. “We also saw a fighter jet over the city. We kept updating the families back at home who were worried for our safety,” he said.

A Sector-20 resident, Shelli, 20 years, who is pursuing MBBS at Zaporozhye State Medical University, said their flight was scheduled on February 24 from Kyiv but after reaching there, it was a panic situation. “Then we decided to travel to Lviv and we lived there with some of our friends for four days. There we faced the shortage of food and when sirens used to blow, we had to move into bunkers many times during the day,” said Shelli, who arrived on Thursday from Ukraine. After a delay in the train, we booked a cab from Lviv that took us to a city near the Hungary border. “It took us many hours to cross the border into Hungary,” she said.

Another student, Simranpreet Kaur Sidhu, an MBBS student at Uzhgorod Medical University and resident of Sector-127, Mohali, said the city was relatively safe but there was rush on the border. “We left on March 1 by bus and it took us many hours to cross the border as there were long queues,” she said.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Dar Ovais is a Chandigarh-based Hindustan Times correspondent who covers higher education.

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