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India’s Ruling Party Credits PM Modi for Halting the Russia-Ukraine Conflict Two Years Ago for the Evacuation of Indian Students

Photo: Reuters

In March of this year, a campaign video released by India’s ruling party presented a compelling narrative that Prime Minister Narendra Modi played a pivotal role in halting the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war two years ago. The purpose, as claimed in the video, was to ensure the successful rescue and repatriation of nearly 20,000 Indian students stranded amidst the conflict. The emotionally charged video, which has now garnered significant attention with nearly 650,000 views on YouTube, portrays a reunion scene at an airport where a young woman, amidst tearful relief, credits Modi for bringing them home, citing that he “stopped the war” for their evacuation. The campaign video’s message is a potent one, touching upon themes of national security, the government’s responsibility to its citizens abroad, and the influence of India on the global stage. The video was shared by PM Modi on his YouTube page on March 10, under the caption: “Safety & security of all Indians assured as they are Modi’s Family.” This narrative, however, stands in contrast to the official stance taken by Indian officials at the time of the evacuation. Back then, suggestions that New Delhi had influenced Moscow to delay military operations were dismissed by Indian authorities. There was no official confirmation from either the Indian government or international bodies that such a cessation of hostilities had indeed taken place to facilitate the evacuation.

International relations experts point out that the claim of a single nation, particularly one not directly involved in the conflict, being able to halt a war between two other countries is extraordinary. Typically, such an action would require extensive international collaboration, likely under the auspices of the United Nations or through concerted efforts by influential nations.
The rescue mission, known as ‘Operation Ganga,’ was undeniably a significant undertaking, with the Indian government mobilizing considerable resources to evacuate its citizens from the war-torn region. The operation was broadly hailed as a success and showcased India’s capacity to conduct large-scale evacuation efforts.
It is important to scrutinize the claims made in political campaign materials critically. While the impact and success of ‘Operation Ganga’ are well-documented, the assertion that Prime Minister Modi was personally responsible for halting the conflict, even temporarily, lacks corroboration from independent sources and international accounts of the war’s progression.
The video’s emotional appeal and its presentation of the Prime Minister as a protective figure for Indian citizens are likely to resonate with the public and the families of those who were evacuated. However, without tangible evidence to support the claim of intervention in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the narrative remains a point of political messaging rather than a substantiated fact.
While the evacuation of Indian students from Ukraine is a matter of record, the claim that Prime Minister Narendra Modi halted the war to facilitate this process is unsubstantiated by publicly available information. It is a powerful assertion within a political campaign context, but one that requires careful examination against the complex backdrop of international diplomacy and conflict resolution. 
By Roxana Stanica

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