Mumbai: An Air India Express flight carrying 182 students stranded in the war-hit Ukraine reached here on Tuesday morning as part of the Operation Ganga evacuation process, officials said.
The AIE flight IX-1202 arrived here from the Henri Coanda Airport in Bucharest (Romania) and the evacuees — including around 24 from Maharashtra — were welcomed by Union MSME Minister Narayan Rane.
This is the second flight airlifting Indian nationals from Ukraine that has reached Mumbai, the first arriving here on February 26 with 219 relieved evacuees from the war-raged nation, besides other flights to New Delhi in the past few days.
Hundreds of anxious parents and relatives waiting outside the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport had a tearful reunion with their children.
Around 1,200 persons from Maharashtra, mostly students, are among the large number of Indians, who have been stuck in Ukraine after Russia launched its military operations on Europe’s second biggest country from February 24.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has directed the state authorities to coordinate with the Centre on the evacuation operations and extend all help to the evacuees returning here.
In the past few days, many students had issued SOS via social media, desperately seeking help and evacuation as the situation continued to worsen with shortages of even basics like food-water-medicines.