New Delhi: To bring back Indian citizens returning from Ukraine under Operation Ganga, India took a significant move by deploying its Russian-origin transport aircraft to evacuate stranded Indians from Russia. Air Force is taking all precautions and not sending its American-origin C-17 aircraft and would instead deploy the Russian-origin Ilyushin-76 for the evacuation mission from Russia.
‘Indian Air Force is deploying Russian-origin Ilyushin-76 heavy-lift transport aircraft to Russia to bring back Indian citizens returning from Ukraine. India is not deploying American-origin C-17 planes for the mission’, ANI reported, quoting government sources. The Il-76 is expected to get clearance for take off shortly, the sources said.
They added that a number of Indian students from Ukraine are moving into the Russian territory from the Ukrainian side with assistance from the Indian government. India has, so far, deployed only C-17s and commercial planes to bring back citizens from Poland, Romania and Hungary to evacuate citizens returning from there. In the ongoing war in Ukraine, Russia and America are on different sides and there is a possibility that Russians may not like the presence of American origin planes in their airspace.