Monday 1 June 2009

Attacks on Indians in Australia

Around 90,000 Indian students study in Australia and they have contributed $2 billion to the Australian economy in last financial year. This is the third largest export earnings for them.

There has been reports of racial attacks on Indian students in Australia. I’ve been reading about such attacks since my 10+2 college days. During those days, due to severe racial abuse, one of my friend was forced to return to India leaving his graduation unfinished. Now, situation seems to have become very grave.

According to Mr. Gautam Gupta, Australia’s FEDERATION OF INDIAN STUDENT Adviser:

"We have seen over 60 to 70 violent attacks in the last one year and over 600 reported attacks. And that's too many"

Australia’s Graduate Student Association president Mr.Paul Coats has following to say:

I am opposed to calls for more police, as it appears that the police have been part of the problem... they blame Indian students for 'making themselves targets’

You might wonder how do they make themselves targets? Well, according to Victorian Police deputy commissioner Kieran Walshe, Indian students carry valuable items such as Ipods, laptops and phones during their commute. Shamelessly blaming victims doesn't hide Aussie police's ineptitude, Why is that these items which are commonly used by everyone else has become uncommon items for Indian students?. How can they explain attack on Sravan Kumar and his friends, which happened inside his house?. Even though eye witness & victims had reported accounts of racial slur at the time of some attacks, police still believes that these crimes are not racial at all, they just think that Indians students were at the wrong place at the wrong time!.

I’m completely disappointed with Indian government's response, When situation is so serious, Why don’t they issue travel advisory to Indian students who intend to study in Australia?. Let Australian government feel the financial pain. Specially, when they are not too willing to admit that these attacks are racially motivated and let alone address them.

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