While their countries are involved in a bloody war, far way in India, 16 Russians and 6 Ukrainians are staying together at a guest house in Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu in complete peach with each other.
The Russians and Ukrainians are stranded in the temple town and a good samaritan, Sathya Gopalan, took them under his wings and provided them free accommodation and food. Of the 22 tourists who are stuck here, 18 are women. Sathya Gopalan told IANS that he found them stranded and one woman was crying.
Gopalan while speaking to IANS said, “I found two Ukrainian woman tourists crying near the Arunachaleswarar temple in Tiruvannamalai and when enquired they told me that they don’t have any cash left and were not in a position to get food and accommodation. I immediately arranged accommodation at my guest house and several friends are helping with the food.”
Most of them had reached India on a one-month tourist visa and some reached on a three-month tourist visa. Sathya Gopalan said, “The visas of some of the tourists will expire by the end of March and have already written to the FRRO and other officers for providing an extension and mostly will get.”
Sathya Gopalan found that six Russian tourists were also struck in another guest house after they ran out of money. He then brought them to his own guest house.
He also put out a Facebook photo of the Russian and Ukrainian tourists sitting together in his guest house and called for other stranded tourists to contact him if they need help.
After his post on the social media, Russians and Ukrainians from Rishikesh, Puducherry, and other places came down to Tiruvannamalai and started staying at his guest house.
Gopalan said, “There are medical doctors, engineers and teachers among those who are on a visit to India. While accommodation is given free of cost by me, some Ashrams here provide food on a rotational basis to the tourists.”
He also said that Ukrainians and Russians are living in a very friendly manner in his guest house, at peach with each other.
Sathya Gopalan said that the Russian tourists who are psychologists are helping the Ukrainian tourists who have some mental issues and are depressed due to the ongoing war.
R. Vetrivelan who is taking care of the tourists, told IANS, “They are friends here and there are no issues between them even though their countries are fighting a deadly war against each other. Some Ukrainians don’t know English and Russians translated that to us so that we could help them properly.”
Sathya Gopalan said that he was trying to help Russian and Ukrainian tourists stranded across India by finding food and accommodation near their respective locations. We are on a Pan India mission to support the stranded Russians and Ukrainians.”
Vetrivelan said that there is a good bonding between the Ukrainians and the Russians here even though their mother nations are fighting a deadly war.