The ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict has witnessed a barrage of weapons being fired from both sides in the past two weeks. With Israel pushing on the ‘offensive’ gear, the battles have left behind piles of rubble and debris in Gaza. Amid the escalating tensions, several Palestinian students studying in India, are worried about the conditions back home and the safety and well-vbeing of their loved ones and families. Talib, a Palestinian student in India has been dealing with psychological trauma following consistent thoughts and worries around the well-being of his family members back home. These eerie thoughts are not even allowing students like Talib to concentrate on their studies.
Being short of money, Talib also had to cut down the “quality and quantity” of his meals. “I haven’t been able to read or write a single sentence ever since the war started. I am experiencing mental stress and haven’t slept properly in a while,” Talib told news agency PTI.
With communication channels in Gaza going off with no electricity and internet, Talib said that he doesn’t even know if his family is alive back in Gaza. It’s a helpless feeling and a difficult situation to be in. I have become conscious about spending money, even on food. Instead of three meals, I eat two meals now and have to compromise on their quality and quantity, ” he was quoted as saying by PTI.
All that Talib could do right now is pray for the war to end, while eagerly waiting to return home. The conflict between Israel and Palestine was triggered by the unprecedented attack by Hamas on Israel on October 7, 2023. Israel in response, launched a massive counter-offensive in Gaza to avenge the attacks.
Over 3,300 people have lost their lives and over 12,000 have been wounded in the conflict by far, as per the Gaza Health Ministry. After completing her degree course, Aliah, another Palestinian student in India was gearing up to head back home when the war erupted.
Unable to connect with her family, Aliah has been suffering from panic attacks since the war broke out. Aliah said that the embassy of Palestine in India has not provided any support to Palestinian students in India and most of them are struggling to survive on their own. “The Palestine Embassy in India has not provided us with any kind of support or inquired about our well-being,” Aliah, who stays with her friends, was reported as allegeing.
Similar worries and conditions have also been circling another student, Farooq, who is left with enough money to barely survive for a week. However, the student has said that he has received some support from his teachers. He further said that the ongoing tensions between Israel and Palestine have also hampered his relationship with some other pro-Israel students. There are several students who support us, but there is a section that supports Israel. Our ties have been severed because of this,” Farooq, who is studying at a leading university in Delhi, was reported as saying.
Notably, several Palestinian students who were studying in India have completed their courses and are waiting to return home, once the Rafah crossing, the sole route connecting Gaza to Egypt, is opened. At present, the crossing is only open for aid delivery to Gaza. (Names of the students are changed to protect identity).
(With inputs from PTI)
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