Oz bureaucrat blames Indians for attacks

“In all but one case, the suspected offender was an Indian. Many of these victims were going to wrong places at wrong time risking their lives," Rod Solomons, Trade and Investment Commissioner of the Queensland Government, told Deccan Herald here.

According to Solomons, another important reason for the attacks was the 'desire' of the Indian students to secure permanent residency in Australia.

"Unscrupulous elements had lured the students with offers of permanent residency. After going there, most students drove taxis and worked at petrol pumps and pizza corners at night to boost their income. Thus, they were at a higher risk of being assaulted," Solomons added.

More than 90,000 Indian students study in Australia. The attacks occurred mainly in Melbourne. According to the bureaucrat who has been in Bangalore for six years, a few attacks were 'staged' by the 'victims' themselves.

‘Media coverage biased’

Asserting that the coverage of attacks in the Indian media was 'bad, biased, and highly sensationalised', Solomons claimed that the Indian media "completely ignored the investigation done and the progress made by the Australian police".

David Holly, Australian Consul-General in Chennai, in his speech at the Australia Day celebration organised by the Rotary Bangalore Orchard on Friday evening, also reiterated that the image of that country projected in the media 'contrasted' the ground reality.

Lamenting that no Indian Prime Minister after Rajiv Gandhi visited Australia, Holly hoped that Manmohan Singh would visit that country to take part in the Commonwealth Heads of Governments Meeting in October, 2011.

The event was part of the Rotary International District 3190’s programme of ‘Building communities and bridging continents’.

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