Monday, January 04, 2010

Racist Killings Continue in Melbourne

What the hell is going on down under. Why have the police lost interest in racist attacks against Indian students in Melbourne. Nitin Garg's (seen here) murder last Saturday was only the latest in a long line of such violent assaults. The twenty-one year old was stabbed bt unidentified assailants in Melbourne on Sunday while on his way to work at the the fast-food joint Hungry Jack's Restaurant. A spokesman for the Federation of Indian Students of Australia said he believed Mr Garg's killing was racist. "There was no robbery, nothing taken. What other motivation is there to stab someone with a 14-inch knife?" Guatum Gupta said. "Australia has a real problem with racism. While the majority of Australians are welcoming, there is a significant minority of hard-core racists who like to go 'curry-bashing' and boast about it."

The following is from The Times of India.

Calling off police drive led to Oz fatal attack?

NEW DELHI: Nitin Garg's murder in Melbourne last Saturday wasn't an isolated incident. Attacks on Indian students in Australia have increased in the last two-three weeks since a special police operation launched to secure the physical safety of students in August last year was withdrawn in December.

"Since this operation was launched following external affairs minister S M Krishna's visit to Melbourne, the attacks against students had gone down by 15-20%. The operation entailed extra police force in different areas and vigorous vigilance. But the operation's withdrawal has led to increase in attacks," says Gautam Gupta secretary, Federation of Indian Students of Australia (FISA) over phone from Melbourne.

Gupta has been getting many calls from concerned parents in India who have their wards studying Down Under. "In the last two days I've been getting many calls from parents especially from Delhi asking what they can do to help. One even suggested a day of prayer to ease the tension. I told them go ahead if it gives you peace of mind," he says.

Rajneesh Kapoor's son Aditya is a final year information technology student at BIT Melbourne. The 49-year-old from Delhi's Pitampura was extremely disturbed after coming to know about the attack on Nitin and has asked his son to take precautions and not venture out in the night. "These attacks have dissuaded many kids from going to Australia. But those who are already there have no option but to be careful. The Australian government is not doing enough to provide security to students despite getting huge amounts of money from them. It's their duty to see that they are safe," he said.

In Melbourne, there is also anger among Indian students over the Saturday night attack, which led to Nitin's death. "Many have volunteered to work for FISA to build a strong support group," says Gupta. These students, mostly in their early Twenties, want to help assault victims by offering medical and legal aid. They also want to become sounding boards for young students to vent their insecurity and frustration over the attacks," says Gupta, who feels these young students need a mentor.

Gupta also wants cricketing icon Shane Warne to come forward in a pro-active manner to denounce the attacks. "Since Shane understands Indian culture and has millions of fans in both countries, he can act as a bridge. He can educate Australians about Indians who are basically peace-loving people. His saying so in a campaign will have a positive impact," says Gupta.

Meanwhile in Melbourne, they are waiting for Nitin's cousin to arrive to hand over the body. Nitin, 21, lived with five friends in Newport, Melbourne. He was stabbed to death by unidentified attackers in a park on Saturday night on way to work at Hungry Jacks restaurant.

No comments: