Fancy an Indian?

By DeusExMacintosh


An Indian man is in a serious condition in a Melbourne hospital after being attacked and set alight by a gang. It comes a week after an Indian graduate student was stabbed to death in the city, prompting a travel advisory from the Indian government.

Melbourne police said the latest attack appeared to be random and there was no evidence it was racially motivated. But the attacks have prompted an angry reaction in India, where Australia has been accused of ignoring racism.

The 29-year-old man attacked on Saturday was returning home from a dinner party with his wife when he was set upon. The gang – said by police to comprise four men – poured fluid over him and then set him alight.

The victim is now in a Melbourne hospital, where his condition has been described as serious, with burns to 15% of his body. Police are trying to trace his burnt clothes, which he shed as he fled the scene.

Det Sgt Neil Smyth said the attack had been “an unusual event” but that it appeared to have been carried out at random.

“There is no reason at this stage to consider this in any way racially motivated,” he told reporters.

“The circumstances of parking a car randomly on a side street and just some people approaching him are a bit strange and it’s highly unlikely, therefore, to be a targeted attack on any individual.”

Peter Batchelor, a minister for Victoria, said that whether the crime was motivated by racism or theft, it was damaging to Melbourne society.

“It diminishes our community, it diminishes us all and we’re totally opposed to it,” ABC news quoted him as saying.

BBC News


  1. Posted January 11, 2010 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    There has been criticism of some sensational Indian media coverage. According to the Times Online UK, “The Indian government has urged its media to show restraint when reporting attacks on Indian students in Australia.”

    We should be even more careful with criminal allegations. My understanding is that the arson squad are still investigating. Isn’t this a quasi legal website? Perhaps restraint all around might be in order.

  2. Posted January 11, 2010 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    It would be nice to get to the bottom of this, have to say. There were so few Indians around where I grew up (which was very diverse) that I have difficulty conceptualizing them as targets of racism. That happened to Vietnamese and Aboriginals and maybe a few Chinese. I don’t think I even knew any Indians, to be honest.

  3. Jason Soon
    Posted January 11, 2010 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Not to mention the Northern Indians are virtually indistinguishable from Mediterraneans or Lebanese. That poor guy who got stabbed looks pretty white for instance

  4. Posted January 13, 2010 at 10:27 am | Permalink

    I’m of the belief that it is principally crimes of opportunity, and being Indian is an indicator or vulnerability.

    That is, Indians are being attacked because they have mobile phones/ipods and are an easy target, not because they are Indian.

  5. Posted January 13, 2010 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    To all those ‘it ain’t really racism’ people – sorry it is. There’s a certain slice of the population here and the only word for their attitude is hatred. Truly.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *