By Melbourne Bureau
Melbourne: Indian Foreign Minister S. M. Krishna has started his tour of Australia – the first by an senior Indian Minister since the controversy over attacks on Indian students in the last few months. During his meeting with New South Wales (NSW) Premier Nathan Rees, Krishna, who is on a five-day visit to Australia, was assured that firm action will be taken against the perpetrators.
The Federation of Indian Students of Australia (FISA) representatives today met the Minister in Sydney and presented him a 8-point charter of demands.
According to the FISA, the demands made are as follows: –
1) We want them to define, communicate and publish the roles and responsibilities of the Indian High Commission and the consulate, with respect to the ongoing services and support to Indian students in Australia.
2) The Indian government needs to create a provision for separate funded student’s services window within the Indian consulate services here.
3) The Indian government should demand from its counterpart to establish a single window of students services centre across the country, where students can deal with issues related to living, studying and working.
4) We are also requesting the Indian government to fund the Federation of Indian Students and represent what we are doing here.
5) We want the Indian government to demand from the Australian government to return the fees and expenses of all the students, who have been affected by the closure of colleges.
6) The Indian government needs to work with their Australian counterpart to monitor and administer the flow of information to and from Australia. There is a lack of information flow and students leaving India do not get the right kind of information.
7) Crime statistics of crime against students should be recorded and published in every institution.
8) The Indian government should tell Australia to establish a crisis centre in the country for students.
The Indian Minister will be visiting Melbourne on 8 th Aug. where he will meet the Indian community and the media.