Melbourne: Indian student hurt in racist gang attack

By our community reporter

Melbourne: An Indian overseas student from Chandigarh was badly bashed in a train here on Saturday evening (9 May) by six persons, becoming another one to a growing list of Indian victims of violence.
Sourabh Sharma, 21, who is a hospitality student was confronted by six persons in a train near Leverton, on his way to home Warribee. They asked him for cigrattees and money and when he said he had none, punched and kicked him in front of many passengers.
Talking to South Asia Times on phone Sourabh said, “They harrassed and kicked me badly on my face. Took all my stuff like wallet, mobile phone, bag, watch and documents.”
” Someone pressed the trains emergency button but the train did not stop. I got down at Warribee and was talken by para medics to the Warribee Mercy Hospital where many tests were conducted on me and found a fracture on the cheek”, Sourabh said.
The attack comes in the wake of growing number of similar attacks on Indian and South Asian overseas students in the Western suburbs.

72 comments on “Melbourne: Indian student hurt in racist gang attack

  1. [...] Media reporting of concerns of racism towards Indian students has also done little to perpetuate positive views from both countries. [...]

  2. sera says:

    yeah! I agree this was a shameful incident.What cause indian media to sensationalise the news.The government should take steps for peoples safety ,to improve Indias status

  3. Timbo says:

    In Sydney the Indians complained about being picked on by Lebanese (nothing to do with Aussies) – and in Melbourne, it seems that many of the attckers were from a variety of racial backgrounds — but of course the paranoid & racist Indian media ignore all of that so they can stoke up hatred against white people. My favourite quote from the Times of India:

    “There is a lot of jeolousy towards Indians because they acquire the best jobs and show a commitment to work and family that Australians rarely show” — So, Indian people are superior to us it seems… smells like racism to me. As for the best jobs, most Indians in Sydney seem to work as cab drivers, in small shops and in Petrol stations – and good on them, somebody has to – but the “best jobs” ?????
    But I am just a jelous white guy with no commitment to anything – so what do I know!

    Loads of Australians have been murdered in India – about 1 a year, almost an entire family in 1999,
    some poor girl in 2008:
    http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2008/02/05/1202090368574.html
    Dawn Emilie Griggs, raped and murdered in 2004, some guy beaten to death in Goa in 2008 – and that’s only ones that I know of, there’s also been rapes:
    http://expressbuzz.com/States/Karnataka/australian-tourist-raped-near-gokarna/47928.html
    If anybody actually bothered to do a study, I am sure they would find that Australians are at greater risk in India than visa-versa – but nobody bothers, because it’s all media hype in India.

    Indians are really sensitive about “racism” and yet they are blind to it amongst themselves.

    Many Indians are racist too. Lets face it:

    In Bollywood movies all foreigners (African, white or Chinese) are always shown as crooks, or with loose morals, or as facists, or drunks, or plain stupid. One muscular African actor lives full time in Bombay – the only parts he gets are those of criminals! I had a couple of roles in Indian movies and TV – but I stopped doing it when I began to think about what I was being asked to portray as a foreigner.

    What about the caste system?

    There is systematic mistreatment of tourists (other races pay more to see all historic attractions, whereas anybody that looks Indian pays next to nothing). Few tourists come back from India without stories about being mistreated – ask any female traveler there about the groping that goes on!

    99% of Indian families living outside India would go nuts if a memeber of their family were to marry outside their racial group.

    Oriental-looking students (of non Indian appearnace) from the fringes of India, states like Manipur, Nagaland, who go to the big cities to study, often report being severely bullied.

    Really, I think many Indians should stop being so “precious” and paranoid, not to mention hypocritical.

    I like India by the way and have Indian friends — but can’t we just be honest with each other???

    • Ravi says:

      Hi Timbo
      Whatever u said,as a true indian i agreed.Everyone is pin pointin others.Crime is everywhere around the world.So we should fight with crime ,not with each other.Those people whor r attackin someone for no reasons, they should be punished and also we hate indian media too.They make their own perception to increase TRP .I have same respect for australia and india.

  4. onetouchpal says:

    everyone cheerup,live ur life and lets not decide which country/race is better rather lets decide which human is better.
    we should learn how to save ourself from these attacks whether racial/opportunistic.rather than waiting for ensue and commenting on it.

  5. singh says:

    australia is a wonderful country n i respect n love dis country but on the other i bcom sad when indian r attacked for no reason n i think of attacking back n im sure u(australians) vil soon c the other face of hard workin indians as v all know australians r not brave as it has been proved in sydney riots so jus wait for future

  6. Ger says:

    I am not to sure about this. I thought the racism thing could be solved by looking at attacks on the students and the 1.2% of australians who are geneticly indian and the remainder of the population who are not indians.

    I have come up so far with an expected 6.6 murders of indian students per year to match the australian average. I am not sure there have even been 6.6 murders – calculations below

    Expected Homicide Rate of Indian Students
    An expected homicide rate for the Indian student population would be a maximum of 6.6 Males 20-30 if no persecution of Indian students was occurring.

    General population Australia 1.2 murders per 100000(2008) – estimated 2009 1.3 per 100,000.www.abs.gov.au
    This is approximately half the murder rate per 100,000 of India http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/cri_mur_percap-crime-murders-per-capita
    Males 15-30 make up 25% of murder victims in Australia and 8% of the population (2008) – estimated murder rate 4.4 per 100,000 http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Products/3235.0~2008~Main+Features~Main+Features?OpenDocument#PARALINK6

    Expected murder rate of Male Indian students aged 20-30 would be = 4.4 * .75 = 3.3 killed per year (assuming males 20-30 make up 75% of the student population or 75,000)

    the above figures allow for no influencing factors. Cities / Poor neighborhoods / Working and traveling late at night would be influencing factors. Assume this doubles the risk of murder then at a maximum you would still only expect 6.6 Male 20-30 year old Indian students to be murdered per year.

    There xx Indian students 20-30 murdered in Australia in 2009?

  7. G George says:

    Hai David, you must be having a laugh mate… Aussies are racist and that is it

  8. Marcus Felicetti says:

    This is one of the most shameful things I have ever heard of in my city. I am a proud Melbournian and this makes me wonder if my city is truly as great as I think it is. I have always thought it is one of the most progressive cities in the world, now I just don’t know. How could this have happened?

  9. John says:

    Mani, WHO speaks in favour of “druggies and worthless people”? Do you not read newspapers here (other than when it says “Indian” and “Racist Attack” in one sentence) and participate in society? Obviously not, because if you did you would realise that street crime fueled by drugs and alcohol is a huge concern in Melbourne of late. Everyone is worried about it. I have never seen anyone or any news speaking in favour of this. (Note I said huge concern, not huge problem).

  10. Mani says:

    Hi Fellows

    I am an Indian and living here for 6 yrs now. i have come across many beautiful and warm , friendly australians , turkish, greeks, italians and asians.Its a multi cultural country and few groups of teenagers and druggies don’t represent the whole country in itself and thats what i believe. But some people speak in favour of these drugies and worthless people who rob and steal who don’t work hard, homeless and shame to this country that represents racism.Racism is in every country but beating and killing people shows animal instinct, lower standard with lower mentally.And people who justify their ACT are more dangerous people in the society.I have deep respect for people who are welcoming and kind hearted but i won’t Hate those disgraceful people who justify these criminal attacks . i would say they really need help and need to get a life. i don’t have time to hate anybody as i have a life to enjoy.
    cheers and enjoy.

  11. David says:

    Reading the article at the top of this thread, how on earth is that racial?

    These attacks happen all of the time and ONLY when it happens to an Indian is it racial. If the Ambo’s had not bothered to turn up at the station and treat him because he was Indian then that would be racialist. Being attacked for your phone, cigarettes and money IS NOT.

    When media write reports like this it just creates the impression of racialism that wasn’t there at the time. How do we know the victim wasn’t attacked by Indians? (maybe we could have if the video was working)

    I’m fed up of people reading racialism into situations where it clearly isn’t the case. I’m an immigrant and I get called a ‘Pommie B******’ ALL of the time and do I bleat about it, no I laugh along and get along with life.

    Get real or get lost.

  12. wayne says:

    Richie
    So I was right you don’t live here now. So you can hardly know what’s actually going on. Yes I called you a hypocrite because you are, on the one hand attacking people and their opinions based on the color of their skin, on the other hand admonishing others for doing the same.
    I posted links (or where to access the info) as proof of what i was said regarding the livability of Australian cities and the crime rate here, you post no such proof, simply pulling bits and pieces from your imagination.
    There was an incident in Bondi between a few men, the actions of a couple of idiot clubbies can hardly be held up as indicative of all Australian attitudes. Once again, what do riots that occurred in the UK, during the Thatchers years have to do with Australia now?
    If you make statements you claim as fact, or dispute others, then post your sources. Otherwise it’s just the ravings of an ignorant self indulgent petulant bottom feeder, regardless of the color of their skin.

  13. Richie says:

    LOL@ WAYNE !!!! Jesus !!! mate .. u need to ask me abt the facts b4 u make your own lill comments … i have lived in aus for more than 4 yrs… and ofcourse nw i m in india … can’t u make it out by the way i said things? ….. and guess u dun like when ppl say those things to u eh.. “PALE TRASH”… dun call me a hypocrite… coz it was meant for ppl like you who like to look down upon others !!!! and about melbourne being one of the most livable cities …. that was then … and this is now.. just coz of sum stupid survey, it does not become one !!!! well.. it was … until all these things started hapenning… remember when u ppl discriminated against a lebbo for being muslim at bondi beach ? got the shit beat out by lebboz and wogs !!!! didn’t ya ? asking for another round frm another race? u havn’t learnt anything !!!!
    dun push us too far… v’ve done it in south hall before … and i can most definitely happen again !!!! This is not a threat but a word of caution frm someone who cares about what is happening !!!

    I love australia and i love ma aussie frnds coz they love back … and u ain’t one of em !!!!!

    Learn to love and respect and u will get the same !!!!!

    Cheerz to all the ppl who vote for PEACE!!

  14. John says:

    Gary, my thoughts exactly. These areas, and especially the times of day these incidents are happening…. **I** would not venture there. I think Indian students need to do a little research before they come here – find the dangerous areas and stay out of them. They’re cheap for a reason!

    I once tried to take a Chinese international student friend to a restaurant in Footscray for lunch – he was livid there was no way in hell he was going near Footscray – it had been drummed in to them before arriving in Australia that some areas are more dangerous than others.

  15. gary says:

    why are these students staying in st albans, springvale and dandenong? These stations are in crap, dangerous, lower class, outer suburban areas and miles from the universities. There are no local students or students from other countries staying here for that very point.

    Most locals would know better than to be on the last train in these areas, so why are naive students housed/allowed to be housed there?

  16. wayne says:

    BTW Richie
    So with a bit of a slip in language it’s revealed the lie about your intimate knowledge of Australia. You don’t actually live in Australia, Your in India…..have you even been to Australia?
    lol
    “we have heaps of aussies who come here all the time”

  17. wayne says:

    Richie
    This ranking came just a few days ago under the heading “Cities in Canada and Australia are the most liveable in the world”. The criteria and the list can be found here;
    http://www.economist.com/markets/rankings/displaystory.cfm?story_id=13809770
    Yes I have looked at the crime rate not just in Melbourne, but over all in Australia. Over the last 20years there has been a decrease in violent crimes (with a slight increase in some types such as home invasions). Perhaps you should check the facts at The Australian Bureau of Statistics.
    Why do I comment on your posts? Because you claim a high moral ground regarding racial intolerance at the same time as racially vilifying people based on the color of their skin ie “wannabe superintelligent Pale diseases on this planet !!!”. Your a hypocrite. Also you make claims of facts which you either pulled out of the air or reside in your head only. Basically you talk crap and obviously your only aim is to inflame the situation. The popular press does that all by itself to increase circulation/ratings, they don’t need your help.

  18. JAINA says:

    oh my god this is just ridiculous. Both countries Australia and India have shit things about them. The real problem is that nobody is getting to the cause of the problems that’s what needs to be fixed instead of finding each countries and their governments faults. I mean where is that going to get us what are we going to solve by arguing. As far as i am concerned Australia is a multi cultural country and has been for ages. The only solutions that i see is that Australia is going to have to some other source of money rather than overseas students and the Indian government is really going to have to work hard to find ways, so that Indians are not obliged to to seek employment and a better place to live. The Indian government really needs to put their hearts in to their work to minimize corruption, poverty increase employment and study options. In fact you will find that most Indians from India are really hard working people and they have it much worse than many Australians but its the lousy corrupt government that just sits on its ass. Another thing that concerns me is the recession, Which the whole world is going to be effected by and that means that we need to work as 1 to prevent things from happening despite our nationalities because IF WE FIGHT OR ARGUE THAT IS GOING TO GET ANYONE ANYWHERE AT ALL!!! This racial attitude between some Indians and Australians is just going to prove pathetic or even deadly in the future. WAKE UP PEOPLE WE HAVE WORSE THINGS AHEAD OF US THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO SOLVE TINY AND SILLY PROBLEMS. THIS GOES FOR ANYONE ONE WHETHER ITS THE YOUNG GENERATION OR THE OLDER GEN OF INDIANS AND AUSTRALIANS AND MANY OTHER NATIONALITIES

    NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE IF WE WORK HARD TOGETHER AS ONE!!

  19. Kiwiman says:

    Well said John you represent the true face of Australia, It’s a shame to read comment’s of some people here who don’t have respect and tolerance for other people and nationality . They don’t represent Australia and should mind their own business and feel sorry for those unfortunate student’s who have been victimized.

  20. John says:

    To the minority of Indians here, and in other media, who are sensationalising all this crime and screaming blue murder – we have a saying in Australia, one you could do well to learn from: PULL YA HEAD IN!

    To the majority of decent Indians in Australia, who rightfully are concerned, but are going about their own business, you have mine, and the majority of Australian’s respect.

  21. boggedDOWN says:

    The 4 billion dollars made from international students is something we could live without, 4 billion is peanuts when dealing with a nations economy. We gain nothing from reducing the number of university place available to local students, it is detrimental to our future as a nation. Once and for all India is an economic shit stack where people struggle, stink and then die. There is no such thing as a welfare system and the caste system rains supreme. Shut up and go home. If there was an anonymous vote taken right now the entire nation would be against your presence.