A day after India advised its citizens to return temporarily from Ukraine in view of the Russian troop-buildup around the country, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the Indian Embassy in Ukraine have set up emergency helplines for 24*7 assistance.

MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi announced the new measures via his official Twitter account, listing a host of phone numbers for “information and assistance.”

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Bagchi separately announced the launch of a 24*7 helpline managed by the Indian Embassy in Ukraine to ease the tensions of Indians currently residing in the country.

“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,” said the Indian Embassy, adding that Ukrainian International Airlines, Air Arabia, Fly Dubai, and Qatar Airways were still operating flights out of the country.

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“To meet the additional demand, more flights are being planned in the near future, including from Ukrainian International Airlines, Air India, etc. Details on the same would be shared by Embassy as and when confirmed,” the Embassy added.

The Embassy has also released a frequently asked questions (FAQ) sheet to help Indians in the country.

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The announcement comes a day after the Indian Embassy in Ukraine urged Indians “whose stay is not essential” to “consider returning temporarily” to India. The Embassy further urged Indians to avoid “all non-essential travel to and within Ukraine.”

As per data from 2020, there were 18,000 Indians, mostly students, living in Ukraine. While the number might have decreased over the past year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are still thousands of Indians in Ukraine.