GUWAHATI, May 3 - Around 1700 persons from Assam, who are stranded abroad, have applied through the respective Indian Embassies to return home and the Government of India has chalked out a plan to bring the stranded Indians from foreign countries in phased manner on priority basis. Those stranded include tourists and students.
Highly placed official sources told The Assam Tribune that the External Affairs Ministry has chalked out an elaborate plan to bring back the Indians stranded abroad and the process is likely to start soon. But as all such persons cannot be brought back together, the Government has decided to bring them back on priority basis. Not all the Indians staying abroad are keen on coming back and those who want to return have applied through the Indian Embassies in those countries.
According to the plan chalked out, the first priority will be given to the persons who are facing deportation due to expiry of their visa. The next priority will be the migrant workers who have been laid off because of the coronavirus outbreak. Next in the priority list are the persons facing medical emergency, pregnant women and elderly. The persons who want to return due to death of close relatives will come next in the priority list, which will be followed by the stranded tourists and students whose institutions and hostels are closed.
However, the Government is of the view that the persons working or travelling abroad are well off and they will have to pay the expenses for their return to India. The Government will arrange special flights to facilitate their return home. Though the date for starting the operation to bring back stranded Indians yet to be finalized, the process is likely to start shortly.
Meanwhile, about 1700 persons from Assam have applied through the Indian Embassies of as many as 48 countries to return home and the highest number of 325 persons have applied from Kazakhstan, followed by 253 from Philippines and 215 from Kyrgyzstan. Sources said that a number of students from Assam are studying in countries like Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan and that is why the number of persons seeking to return from those countries is higher.
Sources said that according to records available so far, 110 persons each have applied to return to Assam from the countries like Canada, Nepal and Nigeria. Many people go for working in Canada and Nigeria and those seeking to return home from Nepal are mostly tourists. As many as 96 persons are seeking to return to Assam from Singapore and majority of them are believed to be tourists. Though a large number of people of Assam are in countries like the United States of America and Britain, not many have applied to return home. As per records, 55 persons from Assam have applied to return home from USA and 34 from United Kingdom. People from Assam go to the UAE both as tourists or to work and 73 of them have applied to return home, while, 27 have applied to return from Saudi Arabia. Ukraine has a number of students from Assam and 37 of them have applied to return home.