MELBOURNE: An Indian student was racially assaulted in a jam-packed bus here by a group of three youths who repeatedly hit him and also threw chicken pieces at him, in yet another attack on the youths from the community in Australia.
24-year-old Rajan Kumar Katkam, who arrived here in 2008 to pursue his course in Graphics, has filed a case with the office of Victims of Crime following the incident which forced him to defer his studies.
“I was travelling on a bus to Rye from Frankston at 2.30 pm (local time) when three youths who were apparently drunk started harassing me,” Rajan said, adding that one of the members first started hitting him while the others threw chicken pieces at him.
Rajan opines, who is returning home next month, “they (attackers) said that black people want to be equal and that’s why they are getting bashed.”
No one has been charged so far over the incident, which took place in February. The case was filed immediately and it is believed that video footage of the incident has been received by the Victoria police.
“The ordeal went on for 45 minutes and no one came to my rescue except one old lady who was kind enough to get up and asked those boys to stop it,” Rajan said. The victim was thankful to the white lady who tried to help him but was asked to keep her mouth shut. Rajan is returning home next month due to some health issues which he claimed had occurred soon after the incident.
Meanwhile, the president of Federation of Indian Association of Victoria (FIAV), Mr Vasan Srinivasan, who is closely following Rajan’s case, said the victim was not able to move his right hand and had been feeling weak.
“Rajan has developed some neck and hand movement problems. We have requested his college to defer his course by a year and have booked his flight back on August 11th,” Vasan said, adding he can return to finish his course at a later stage.
Indian students, specially in Victoria, have reported more than 100 cases of assaults since June last year, prompting serious concerns over their safety and the issue of racism in the country.
According to a recently released study by Monash University’s Centre for Population and Urban Research, there was a strong link between the government’s international education skilled migration and labour policies which lead to Indian students becoming prone to racism.