Second batch of Indians arrive from Lebanon
The second batch of 423 Indians, who were evacuated from strife-torn Lebanon, arrived in Chennai in the wee hours of Tuesday by a special Air India flight.
The evacuees, mostly from Tamil Nadu and Punjab, were received at the airport by Tamil Nadu Forest Minister N Selvaraj, Dairy Development Minister U Mathivannan and Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs Malay Mishra.
Out of those who arrived from Lebanon at 2.15 am, 269 were from Tamil Nadu, 139 from Punjab, nine from Kerala, three from Goa and one each from Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bangalore.
On arrival, each of the evacuees, who were happy to be back in the country, were given Rs 500 in cash each besides food packets and dairy products.
Several buses were kept ready to transport those from the state, mostly from the southern districts, to their homes. A few local buses were also made available for the convenience of those from outside the state, who have been put up in the Chennai Corporation guest house and other government guest houses.
They will leave later today by air or road for their respective home towns.
Besides the counters set up by the state government for distribution of money and food packets, a medical counter was also kept ready in case of an emergency.
Talking to newsmen, Selvaraj and Mathivannan said they were deputed by Chief Minister M Karunanidhi to receive the evacuees and ensure they were comfortable.
On Friday, a batch of 342 persons had arrived here from Lebanon by a special Air India aircraft.