Friday, June 26, 2009


The Government of Andhra Pradesh is really concerned about the 'racist' attacks on Indian students in Australia.This concern is evident from the 'steps' proposed to be taken in future. The Hindu reported on 24th June that the Andhra Pradesh Government would seek undertakings from the representatives of Australian Universities or institutions who come to the state to get students.

Now, the question is whether there is any University/institution in India or in Andhra Pradesh that would be willing to provide any kind of undertaking ensuring the safety and security of students?

What if, the Australians insist on having undertakings from the students and their parents or guardians over there conduct?

The proposed steps of the AP government are of the populist kind in the worst possible sense.

I have an younger brother who is now in Australia and he provided an entirely different perspective on the so-called racially motivated attacks.

Australia is not in the same league as the United States or England when it comes to higher learning. The same is true of those who go to Australia. The cost is much less and the entry does not always require solid academic background. I have a distant cousin of mine who was unable to get an entry into any institution offering a Bachelor's degree in Engineering or Medicine. What he lacked in terms of grades was offset by his parents' moneybags. He was despatched of all places to Nepal and he returned as a Doctor. Now, he is in Australia to get the M.S. degree that could make all the difference.

Students are allowed to work for 20 hours a week during their stay in Australia.But very often they work for nearly twice that time. Most parents would have spent their lifetime's savings to send their sons and the sons do their bit to send money home. In times of an economic slump when the local population finds it difficult to stay employed, these students are the targets. Of course, I do not deny that no racism is involved in these attacks.

Further, those who come from affluent backgounds, do not hesitate to flaunt their wealth. This, again, in these trying times makes the Indian students the envy of the underprivileged in Australia.

Moreover, the Indian students do not make much of an effort to mingle with the local community. They remain insular and form various associations.So they are regarded as outsiders.

The Indian government and the government of Andhra Pradesh or any other state government should first try to clean up the mess that the present system called higher education is concerned.

No comments:

Post a Comment