New Delhi | India is about to begin the largest evacuation since Independence of its nationals stranded overseas amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The first phase of the operation to bring back stranded Indians will likely start this week.
After the growth of the pandemic, most of the countries of the world have grounded commercial flights which has led to lakhs of Indians being stuck outside the country.
The reports say that Ministry of External Affairs has prepared a plan for the evacuation of about 14,800 Indians in the first phase who are stranded in 13 different countries. Flights will take off to Philippines, Singapore, Bangladesh, UAE, UK, USA, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Singapore, Oman, Bahrain and Kuwait.
As per the Home Ministry, evacuations will be a paid service and only those Indian who display no symptoms of COVID-19 will be allowed to travel and come back to India. Even after their arrival in India, all persons will be examined and they will be quarantined for 14 days, on payment basis.
As per estimates by the government, the number of Indian nationals stranded abroad could be in lakhs. The government is arranging for their travel by aircraft and naval ships.