Ukrainians Welcoming Indian Students With Unopen Arms

( – Ukrainian residents have offered anything but a warm welcome to medical students from India who are returning to the war-torn country to finish their degrees. Roughly 18,000 were evacuated following Russia’s invasion in 2022, and most hoped to continue their coursework at other universities in nearby nations. About 3,400 have had no choice but to return amid the continued conflicts. Citing the Indian government’s decision to profit off Russian oil despite bans resulting from the war, many Ukrainians are demanding that the Indian students leave immediately.

The Times of India reports that numerous Indian students have made attempts to transfer back out of Ukraine, but restrictions have left many of them without any other options. Those who managed to secure transfers are paying more and suffering the added expense of moving to yet another foreign country. Individuals who have remained in India are concerned they’re damaging their careers. Some have opted to continue with online classes, but they fear they may not receive validation of the credits they earn remotely.

Russian oil has suffered severe price caps from the United States and several other allied countries since its attack on Ukrainian soil. But instead of caving under the pressure, according to The New York Times, Moscow opted to take its business elsewhere — namely, any country willing to buy at more competitive prices. Not only did India jump on the deal, but it now purchases about 45% of Russia’s crude supply. Even worse, it resells that same oil to countries that have caps on the Kremlin’s stock, essentially bypassing the sanctions and funding Putin’s war in the process.

Returning Indian citizens have been feeling the sting. Times of India states that some shopkeepers refuse their business, while other establishments are simply rude to the unwanted visitors. NDTV reports that not everyone is punishing the students for their government’s actions. Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, called them an important part of his country’s society and hoped they might all celebrate Diwali — a Hindu-based light festival — together once the war was over.

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