Thiruvananthapuram, Jul 5: B.R. Shetty, an Abu Dhabi based entrepreneur from Mangalore has offered jobs in hospitals to the 46 nurses freed by insurgents in Iraq. The nurses were taken by insurgents from Tikrit to Mosul and then set free in the Kurdish town of Erbil on Friday. A plane carrying them landed in Mumbai on Saturday.
B.R. Shetty owns hospitals across the Gulf country, Nepal, Bhutan and India. He announced his offer in advertisements in Kerala newspapers. He asked the nurses, who returned from Iraq on Saturday, to contact his office if interested.
A special Air India flight with 183 people on board, including the 46 nurses freed by insurgents in Iraq arrived here Saturday morning, spelling relief for the Indian government and families of the stranded Indians. The Air India flight took off earlier from Erbil, the capital of Kurdistan, after the nurses were freed by the insurgents following intense Indian diplomatic efforts.
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that at one point of time, he had lost all hope as the plane did not get permission to land in Erbil because of heavy wind. He thanked External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj for all efforts made to bring back the nurses to India.
Reports said many nurses protested at the Erbil airport, saying they won’t board the plane unless they are paid their four months’ arrear salary. Indian officials persuaded them, and they finally agreed.
All the 180 passengers, plus three crew members, are reported to be safe, the officials said. The nurses will be received at the Kochi airport, where a special immigration desk has been set up.