Dubious institutions in Aus ruin lives of young Indians: Krishna

Dubious institutions in Aus ruin lives of young Indians: Krishna

He also said ''physical attacks'' on Indian students in Australia and the poor quality of courses and services offered in many vocational colleges were of concern to India.

"I think they (vocational colleges) are not only bringing a bad name to Australia but they are destroying the future of the younger generation of Indian students," Krishna, who is here on a visit, told 'The Australian' newspaper.

He also called for new regulations to cover private colleges and continued reform by the federal and state governments.

However, Krishna also praised Canberra and state governments for responding to India's concerns. He said the damage to Australia's reputation in India need not be long term.

"The Australian and (state) governments have quickly moved in and started undoing the damage by a series of measures taken to dispel any notions of insecurity felt by the Indian student community," he said.

"I would want the tempo to be maintained so that signals are constantly flowing to India, so that governments are constantly responding to meet our concerns," Krishna, who met Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and his counterpart Stephen Smith during his visit, said.

"Some dubious educational institutions have lured gullible Indian students into joining some of these institutions. There is a big gap between the quality of what has been promised and what has been delivered," Krishna said.

"Some colleges have closed down but full-time fees have been collected from these students and they are left high and dry. So they are wandering around the streets of Sydney and Melbourne and they are a cause of consternation for India," he said.

"Perhaps there is case for a new regulatory regime to be put in place as far as these private education providers are concerned," the Minister said.

Asked whether India and Australia are working to formalise a security co-operation framework during Rudd's visit to New Delhi this year, Krishna said he can neither confirm nor deny.

"India is desirous of expanding its relationship with Australia," he said. Specifically on security, he commented: "We need these technologies from Australia."

Krishna also emphasised India and Australia's common interest in the maritime security of the Indian Ocean, and was upbeat about the possibility of a Free Trade Agreement between India and Australia, without formally endorsing the concept, the newspaper said.

Asked whether China's massive military build-up concerned India, Krishna said: "When a country acquires much more than is needed to defend its territories, naturally it causes some concern."

Krishna said India supported China's territorial integrity, and regarded Tibet as part of China.

However, he said: "The Dalai Lama is a highly respected spiritual figure throughout the length and breadth of India. Over time he has left his spiritual imprint on the people of India."

Krishna also accused Pakistan of maintaining a terrorism infrastructure that was used to launch attacks against India, the Australian reported.