Monday, August 8, 2022

War survival guide: The big do’s and don’ts during war

What to do when one is stuck in a war like situation? What are the essentials that one must need? How does one get out of a situation like that? What are the dos and don’ts in a situation like that? How to manage physical and mental health? These questions force us to think about the plight of Indian nationals and students, who are stuck in Ukraine right now. If you know someone or if you are that someone who is stuck in a situation like this, this war survival guide is appropriate and lists all the big do’s and don’ts during war.

One of the first things is to learn phrases in the local language. In this particular cases – Russian or Ukrainian. Use google translate or write on a page sentences like:

‘I am from India- ‘Я ИЗ ИНДИИ’

‘I am a student- ‘Я УЧЕНИК’

‘Please don’t harm me’- НЕ ПРИНИМАЙ МЕНЯ ВРЕДА

‘I am not a combatant’- Я НЕ БОЕВИК

‘Please help me’- ПОЖАЛУЙСТА, ПОМОГИТЕ МНЕ.

Another important thing is to save phone’s battery. Deleting all unnecessary apps from home, limiting conversations to low volume and limiting conversations to audio only can help one achieve this.

To take care of one’s physical and mental health, it is important to do regular breathing when stationary, do mild movements for limbs and blood circulation and try to stay hydrated.

One must also carry an emergency bag, which contains items like passport, id card, water, medicines, life saving drugs, torch, matchbox, lighter, candles, cash, energy bars, power bank, first aid kids, warm jacket and muffler, gloves, warm socks and walking shoes.

In an outdoor setting, one must make groups or squads to ensure physical safety. Keep a white flag or cloth handy for waiving. Avoid city centres, downtown areas. Stay indoors in safe zones, basements and bunkers. On streets, walk on roadsides. Crouch low to avoid being targeted. Don’t cross streets and if injured, inform control room or helpline. In case of being stopped by military check post police and armed personnel, one must cooperate, obey or raise hands with palm facing forward and remain calm. Provide necessary information and contact control room/helpline. Do not get into a confrontation.

In a group setting, it is better to organise into groups of 10. Within group, there should be a paid system and a nominated group leader. One must share their whereabouts with buddy/group leader, make whatsapp group with everyone’s details, share group details with embassy in New Delhi, share geolocations with embassy in New Delhi. One person should also be assigned to communicate with local authorities and control rooms. Lastly, a headcount of group must be done every 8 hours.

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