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Oz attacks not racist, says NRI to SC

india Updated: Jun 30, 2009 00:44 IST
Satya Prakash
Satya Prakash
Hindustan Times
NRI disrupts SC hearing

Amidst continuing attacks on Indian students Down Under, a Melbourne-based NRI on Monday made a dramatic appearance before the Supreme Court.

Chartered accountant Pradeep Ahlawat (28) said blowing the issue out of proportion could have serious repercussions for the Indian community in Australia.

Ahlawat, who went to Australia in 2006 from Rohtak, Haryana, has since acquired a permanent residency status.

He first tried to say something when Attorney General G.E. Vahanvati was addressing the court, during the hearing of a petition relating to attacks on Indian students abroad.

At first a bench headed by Justice Dalveer Bhandari snubbed him. But towards the end of the proceedings, he again made a request to make his submission.

“I am an Indian living in Australia. I went there to study and now work there. I have first-hand experience of the problem. I want to say something,” Ahlawat told the court, which agreed to hear him out.

Ahlawat said the real issues behind these attacks had been obfuscated after some organisations termed these as purely racial in nature.

“The media and some protesting organisations have blown this issue out of proportion which has created fear and panic among the Indian community in India as well as in Australia,” Ahlawat told Hindustan Times.

“Such attacks are done by some anti-social elements against soft targets and such elements are present in every country including Australia and India,” Ahlawat said in a two-page write-up handed over to the court.

The court asked him to file an affidavit with his suggestions. Vahanvati said the success of Indians in Australia was also one of the reasons behind the attacks.