Under Sankat Mochan Operation C-17, Airforce flight, carrying Indians stranded in South Sudan landed in Delhi after a brief halt at Trivandrum. With 156 people on board, the flight reached Trivandrum on Friday morning. The evacuees also included two Nepali citizens, besides nine women and three children. Minister of State for External Affairs, V K Singh, who accompanied the passengers, told reporters at the airport that 156 persons have been evacuated, of whom two are from Nepal.
South Sudan is witnessing heavy fighting between former rebels and government soldiers in several parts of the city.
There are over 550 Indians at Juba and another 150 in areas where the oil wells are located. "When we landed, 156 came out with us. There were 30-40 people who had already booked their tickets when the commercial flights started and 300 people did not want to be evacuated due to their business concerns and other activities. There are 9 women and three children among those evacuated," Singh said while executing Sankat Mochan operation.
On those who turned down the government's plea to be evacuated, Singh said, "we tried to convince them. I suppose business comes first, life comes later (for them)."
The C-17 aircraft was brought via Uganda and the minister also met the Ugandan Prime minister Ruhakana Rugunda who on his part assured of all help.