Mr. Gautam Gupta (left) and others in ABC2 serial ‘Dumb, Drunk and Racist’ SOURCE: ABC2
By our reporter
Melbourne, 10 July: Mr.Gautam Gupta, a practising hearing specialist and former leader of the Indian youth movement in Melbourne has defended his position on the controversial ABC TV series ‘Dumb, Drunk and Racist’. The series is exploring the notion if Australia is racist from an Indian perspective. The next part of the six-part series will be telecast on Wednesday 11 July on ABC2. It explores the Australian binge drinking culture.
Mr. Gautam Gupta has highlighted in one of the episode that in 2009 Indians were over-represented as victims of crime by almost 4 to 1. Joe, the presenter said that he was bashed in Dandenong and that Dandenong was unsafe in general. Gautam clarified that what Joe lacked in understanding was that the diversity and ethnic mix of Dandenong was very different when Joe was growing up. Indian students acted as a buffer and were, in fact, protecting the mainstream majority from being bashed. Hence the statistical over-representation.
He was questioned whether Melbourne was more unsafe than many Indian cities such as Meerut. To this Gautam replied that Australia cannot be compared to any under-developed or developing country. Melbourne in the most liveable city and it should be most liveable for everyone.
Some sections of the Indian community are concerned thinking Mr.Gautam Gupta has belittled India. SAT queried Mr. Gautam Gupta to clarify his position. He says his statement was not about India. It was about Melbourne and only Melbourne. He suggests India faces issues faced by many developing nations such as clean drinking water, corruption, lack of infrastructure etc.Most of these issues are absent in Melbourne. On most liveability indices, Melbourne is rated amongst the best in the world and hence Melbourne should be compared with only with cities such as London, Zurich and Oslo.
Mr. Gupta further said that he has always defended Indians and India for their achievements. I will continue to defend the right of every Indian in Australia he told SAT.
The serial can be viewed at http://www.abc.net.au/tv/dumbdrunkracist/episodes/ep03.htm.
By our correspondent
Melbourne: The Indian students in Australia has asked the Shiv Sena to withdraw its plan to stop Aussie players from playing in Mumbai during IPL matches.
In a letter to Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thakeray, Gautam Gupta of the Federation of Indian Students of Australia (FISA) says: “It is the Indian student’s strong desire that there should be no violence or protests against Australian cricketers and instead the Australian Cricketers should be invited to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Indian students and become FAIR GO Ambassadors for all Indians especially when they return to Australia.”
Earlier, the Shiv Sena had announced not to let Aussie players play in IPL matches protesting against attacks on Indian students in Australia.
By Neeraj Nanda
Melbourne: The leader of opposition and Liberal leader Ted Baillieu today slammed the Brumby government over its handling of the attacks on Indian students. Mr. Belieu was addressing a select gathering to mark Australia Day and India’s Republic Day organised by the Australia India Business Council.
Mr. Ted Baillieu said that the law and order problem had become worse with record level of violence, racist behaviour and the decline of the international student market. Citing statistics, Mr. Baillieu said there was a collapse of law and order in Victoria with assault cases rising from 19,000 in 1999to 33 thousand in 2009. And added to this, he said, Victoria had the lowest per capita police in the country.
He slammed the Victorian Premier John Brumby for not acknowledging racism, violence and ensuring the safety of international students. This, he said, had given a unsafe and bad name to Victoria in the world.
The opposition leader also cited his experience with Melbourne taxi drivers who have been facing violence and racist behaviour for over four years.
Mr. Baillieu said, “ it was the worst thing to condemn the victim”, which he said, was an distraction of the real issue of violence and racist behaviour.
He then went on to criticise the Brumby government for its failure to acknowledge the problem instead of taking “swift, firm and decisive action” to curb violence, including attacks on Indian students.
“We have to curb the problem and the administration needs leadership”, he said.
The function was also addressed by Mr. Harish Rao, President Australia India Business Council.