Kottayam: A couple whose three daughters are working as nurses in Iraq are in prayers here as anxiety over the fate of the Indians stranded in various cities of the trouble-torn country continues unabated.
But to their relief, the three -- Dona, Sona and Veena --called their father C C Joseph and mother Selin this morning from the hospitals where they are working.
While Dona works at a hospital in Al-Samawah, her twin sisters are with a hospital in Tikrit.
Joseph, hailing from Eattumanur in Kottayam district, said though his daughters had been calling him over phone regularly even after violence spread to these towns in Iraq, he and his family members were eagerly awaiting their safe return.
"They are making calls to us frequently. I talked to my daughters this morning also. They say that they are safe. But since reports about the violence continue, we are very much concerned," he said.
Joseph's elder daughter Dona (27) joined a hospital in Al-Samawah one and half years back, while her twin sisters Sona and Veena (24) secured postings in a hospital in Tikrit 10 months back.
Joseph said Dona told him there was not much trouble in Al-Samawah. But as the violence was continuing in Tikrit, she could not go and meet her sisters there, he said.
"They told me that the hospital in Tikrit is completely under the control of the militants. The management of the hospital has also changed. The nurses have been told by Indian Embassy officials that they are awaiting for an opportunity to take them in a helicopter to the airport, which is over 130 km away from the hospital," he said.
According to the Kerala Government, as many as 46 Indian nurses are working in the General Hospitals in Tikrit alone, most of them Malayalis.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to make urgent efforts for the evacuation of Indians from Tikrit.