Manmohan Singh seeks objective reporting on Australia attacksJune 9th, 2009 - 7:24 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, June 9 (IANS) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday asked the media to be objective and cautious while reporting the attacks on Indian students in Australia, and assured that he understood the anxiety of their parents.
“I wish to request the media to be mindful of the fact that there are over 200,000 Australian citizens of Indian origin,” the prime minister said during a debate in the Lok Sabha on President Pratibha Patil’s address to the joint session of parliament.
“We should be mindful of their interests, and avoid willy-nilly creating a situation where these citizens of Australia of Indian origin become the targets of racist intolerance,” he said.
“I do not wish to under-play the anxiety of the parents of our students.”
The prime minister said he had spoken with his Australian counterpart Kevin Rudd and was reassured that any racist attacks on Indian students would be strongly dealt with.
The Australian premier, Manmohan Singh said, had also made a statement in his country’s Parliament in which he condemned and deplored the attacks, while calling them unacceptable.
“He emphasised that Australia is a multi-cultural nation which respects and embraces diversity. He said that these would be countered with the full force of the law.”
India and Australia, Manmohan Singh said, have very good relations and it has been our effort to widen and deepen these ties in the last five years.
There was a spate of attacks in recent weeks against Indian students in Australia, who insisted that these were racially motivated and that the police was not doing enough to stop them.