India is in talks with countries such as Hungary, Romania, Kazakhstan and Poland for continuing education of students evacuated from Ukraine, Foreign Minister S Jaishankar said on Wednesday. Responding to a discussion in Lok Sabha about the situation in Ukraine, Jaishankar said the Ukrainian government has also offered relaxation to students for taking two important exams in their medical training.
He said the Ukrainian government has decided that there will be a relaxation for students regarding promotion from the third to the fourth year. “The compulsory CROC exam has been postponed to next academic year. As for the students in the sixth year, the degrees would be awarded without taking the compulsory CROC-2 exam. The criterion would be solely academic achievement,” Jaishankar told the House, noting that Hungary had offered to allow students who had been evacuated from Ukraine to complete their medical courses at its universities.
“Besides Hungary, there were offers from other countries. We have been in contact with Hungary, Romania, Kazakhstan and Poland about continuing education for the students evacuated from Ukraine. Because these countries have similar education systems,” he said. He noted that the ministries of education and health were involved and were exploring ways for those who had been evacuated from Ukraine to continue their education.
The Ministry of Finance has also asked banks to assess the impact of the crisis in Ukraine on the education loans they offer to students in Ukraine, the minister told members. “There are 1,319 students who have outstanding loans,” he said. Responding to issues identified by members during Tuesday’s discussion, the minister said some students did not leave because they believed it would disrupt their education.
Several universities had refused to offer online courses at the time, he said, adding that a university in Kiev said they cannot convert to an online system. “There was one in Odessa who said we could take online classes until February 25th. A university in Kharkiv – the embassy kept calling them and even sent someone to meet – they were not willing to meet,” he said. Some universities suggested students stay because it doesn’t get serious, he said.
Referring to reports at the time that Russia was withdrawing some of its units, Jaishankar said that when he personally checked it from the Ukrainian side, they asked the students not to panic because they had things under control. He said such an alert had placed the students in a dilemma.
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