Monday, 6 July 2009

Australia assures security to Indian students

In the wake of series of racial attacks Down Under, Australian officials on Monday (July 06) assured safety to Indian students in Australia.
A high-level delegation from Canberra led by Colin Walters, Group Manager, International Group, Australian Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations met Indian officials in national capital city New Delhi earlier on Monday.

Colin Walters, Group Manager, International Group, Australian Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, said that the Australian government was committed to taking all the necessary measures to ensure safety of the Indian students.

"There is no tolerance in Australia for attacks on students. There is no tolerance for attacks based on race. There is no tolerance for racism in any shape or form and we want to do everything we can to make sure that we take all the actions possible to do away with that," said Colin Walters.

Paul Evans, Assistant Commissioner, Victoria Police, elaborated on the steps being taken by the Australian government to ensure the safety of Indian students in Australia.

"Some of the actions we have done is to produce an operational course called safe stations. A lot of these assaults and robberies occurred around certain railway hubs and transport locations. So what we have done is greatly increase our uniform patrols, members of railway stations, police members. We have also got people in plain clothes involved. We have also got canine on units involved that's dogs. We have also involved our…, which are horses around the stations to give a very visible police presence," said Paul Evans.

Apart from the national capital, New Delhi, the delegation will also visit other important cities like Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Chandigarh and Kolkata.

Australia has been under intense pressure in the Indian media after a series of brutal attacks on students in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide in the recent past.

Reportedly, more than 1,400 students and other immigrants have been victims of racial abuse Down Under.

The issue strained diplomatic relations and led to urgent talks between Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.