BENGALURU: Altogether 12 engineers working with the Karnataka Water Resources Department are stranded in New Zealand due to the COVID-19 lockdown. The state government has sought External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar's help to bring them back to Karnataka.
The engineers went to New Zealand to attend a training session on hydrology at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) from March 3 to March 20. They were scheduled to take a return flight on March 23.
"Due to the lockdown, the engineers are forced to stay back. Their families are putting immense pressure on the water resources department to arrange for their return as the female engineers have children between the ages of two and seven. The parents of these engineers are panicking," Karnataka water resources minister Ramesh Jarkiholi stated in a letter to Jaishankar.
The engineers' families are calling the department seeking help to ensure their return and the engineers stranded in New Zealand too have sent mails mentioning the difficulties they are facing psychologically, the minister stated. The minister requested the MEA to bring them back on a flight scheduled on June 7, 2020, from Auckland to Delhi.