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Operation Ganga: 11 flights to bring back 2,200 Indians from Ukraine on Sunday

his included 3,000 Indians airlifted on Sunday by 12 civilian and three Indian Air Force flights.

Operation Ganga: 11 flights to bring back 2,200 Indians from Ukraine on Sunday
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More than 13,700 Indians safely evacuated from Ukraine have been brought back in special flights since February 22 under Operation Ganga, the government said on Saturday. This included 3,000 Indians airlifted on Sunday by 12 civilian and three Indian Air Force flights.

The civil aviation ministry said in a statement that India will operate 11 special flights on Sunday from Budapest, Kosice, Rzeszow and Bucharest, bringing in more than 2200 Indians back home.

It said three C-17 heavy lift transport aircraft of the IAF, which had taken off on Friday from the Hindan air base, landed back at Hindan airbase on Saturday morning. These flights evacuated 629 Indian nationals from Romania, Slovakia and Poland. These flights also carried 16.5 tonnes of relief load from India to these countries, the ministry said.

India has ramped up the evacuation efforts amid raging fighting between Ukraine and Russian forces, with four Union ministers—Hardeep Singh Puri, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Kiren Rijiju and Gen (Retd) V.K. Singh camping in countries adjoining Ukraine to supervise these operations.

India has been evacuating its citizens through special flights from Ukraine's western neighbours such as Romania, Hungary and Poland as the Ukrainian airspace has been shut down since February 24 when Russian President Vladimir Putin launched a special military operation in Ukraine.

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.

On Saturday, Russia and Ukraine agreed on a temporary ceasefire in the two cities of Mariupol and Volnovakha of southern Ukraine to allow civilians to evacuate the area.

This is the first ceasefire in the 10 days since Russia began their offensive against Ukraine, but other cities in the country continue to be bombarded by the Russian forces.

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