403 Indian students died abroad since 2018 due to various reasons including natural causes: Govt

403 Indian students died abroad since 2018 due to various reasons including natural causes: Govt

New Delhi, Feb 2: A total of 403 incidents of death of Indian students abroad have been reported since 2018 due to various reasons including natural causes, accidents and medical conditions with Canada topping the list with 91 cases followed by 48 in the UK, the government informed Lok Sabha Friday.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said the welfare of Indian students abroad is one of the foremost priorities for the government.

“As per the information available with the ministry, 403 incidents of death of Indian students abroad have been reported since 2018 due to various reasons including natural causes, accidents and medical conditions,” he said.

Jaishankar was replying to a question on safety of Indian students abroad.

“Indian missions/posts abroad respond to any issues faced by Indian students on priority basis,” he said.

Jaishankar also provided the country-wise details of deaths of Indian students abroad since 2018.

The data showed 91 Indian students died in Canada, 48 in the UK, 40 in Russia, 36 in the US, 35 in Australia, 21 in Ukraine and 20 in Germany.

According to the statistics, 14 Indian students died in Cyprus, 10 each in Philippines and Italy and nine each in Qatar, China and Kyrgyzstan.

To a separate question, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said India’s policy towards Palestine has been long standing and consistent.

“We have supported a negotiated two State solution, towards establishment of a sovereign, independent and viable State of Palestine within secure and recognised borders, living side by side in peace with Israel,” he said.

The minister said India has strongly condemned the October 7 terror attacks on Israel and the loss of civilian lives in the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict.

“We have called for restraint and de-escalation and emphasized peaceful resolution of the conflict through dialogue and diplomacy,” he said.

To a separate question, Minister of State for External Affairs RajKumar Ranjan Singh said India’s ‘Neighbourhood First policy’ continues to guide its approach towards the management of relations with countries in its immediate neighbourhood.

He said the policy is an institutional priority for all the relevant arms of the government.

“The Neighbourhood First policy, inter alia, has resulted in enhancing physical, digital and people to people connectivity across the region, as well as augmenting trade and commerce,” Singh said.

“The government keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on India’s national security interests and takes all necessary measures to safeguard it,” he said.–(PTI)

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