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Indian students stranded in Ukraine are advised to carry national flag on vehicles: Union Minister

New Delhi: Indian students stranded in crisis-stricken Ukraine are advised to carry the national flag on their vehicles for safety, said Union Minister G Kishan Reddy on Saturday. Speaking to ANI, the Union Minister said, "Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to the Ministers and heads of the countries surrounding Ukraine. So if Indian travelling on buses, cars or two-wheelers, reach the border of Ukraine to get into another country, the Indian government has made sure that they are allowed entry without any problem. For the people who are reaching the border of Ukraine into Romania, the Indian government had taken measures to bring students from there for free of cost."Reddy further informed that the government has asked the students to carry the Indian flag with themselves as Russia has given a word not to take any action against the Indian students. "We have asked the students who are travelling on bikes, cars and buses to display the Indian flag prominently on the vehicles. People who are not carrying pictures of flags have been sent flags through social media. Russia has promised that it will not take any action against Indian students. We have asked them to reach the Ukraine border carrying the Indian Flags," said the Union Minister. Meanwhile, the first flight to Mumbai with 219 Indian nationals has taken off from Romania, said External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday. Amid the ongoing Ukraine-Russia crisis, the Indian Embassy in Kyiv has advised Indian citizens against moving to any of the border checkpoints without prior coordination with government officials at border posts. In an advisory to Indian nationals on Saturday, the embassy stressed that the situation at various border checkpoints is sensitive and it is working continuously with the Indian Embassies in the neighbouring countries for coordinated evacuation of our citizens. This comes as the Russian military continues to advance in the capital city of Ukraine, according to media reports. Explosions in parts of Kyiv were heard on Friday as Russian forces approached the city, media reports said on Saturday. Videos from eyewitnesses show explosions taking place in the Ukrainian capital city as some media reports said Ukraine and Russia are discussing a place and time for talks.

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