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Reports reveal a concerning trend of Indian youths being misled into joining the conflict in Ukraine. Unscrupulous middlemen and agents are creating fake employment letters promising high salaries and Russian citizenship, attracting young individuals under false pretenses.

Lured by the prospect of earning up to Rs 2 lakhs per month with free rations and potential citizenship, several youths, including two from Telangana, signed contracts and underwent training. However, the harsh reality of potentially facing frontline combat shattered their illusions, prompting them to seek escape.

The death of Hemil Ashvinbhai Mangukiya from Gujarat in a Ukrainian drone attack tragically highlights the dangers these youths face. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) acknowledges the involvement of some Indian nationals in “support jobs” with the Russian army and is working with Russian authorities to secure their early discharge.

Online investigations link a company named “Credo” to the Wagner Group, a notorious Russian private military contractor. While the company’s connection to the group’s deceased leader, Yevgeny Prigozhin, remains unconfirmed, it raises concerns about potential involvement in this deceptive recruitment scheme.

Exploiting vulnerable individuals with false promises and pushing them into a conflict zone is deeply concerning. Only through coordinated efforts to raise awareness, investigate the network, and ensure the safe return of trapped individuals can this situation be addressed effectively.