8 Jun 2009

Indian students protest again

4:28 pm on 8 June 2009

Hundreds of Indian students rallied in Sydney on Sunday, accusing police and state and federal governments of failing to protect them.

In the latest incident, a student's car was torched in Melbourne on Saturday.

Police are reported to have said the attack was not racist.

Thousands of people rallied in Melbourne a week ago over a spate of violent attacks against Indian students, including two stabbings.

More than 90,000 foreign students in Australia are from South Asia.

The ABC reports that the protesters also called for Australia's education and immigration policy to be overhauled so overseas students are protected from dodgy landlords and employers and receive the same benefits as domestic students.

National Union of Students president David Barrow told the rally that government policy toward foreign students was discriminatory.

He said the education sector and the government had treated international students "like cash cows - not like human beings" for too long.

Dr Moninder Singh, from the United Indians Association, said police are not taking their complaints seriously enough. But he called for patience from the Indian community, saying it was a law and order issue.