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Indian students in Russia feel insecure

About 150 Indians stop India's consul general JD Pavel and escort her to their dormitory, demanding better security.

india Updated: Sep 28, 2006 20:07 IST
Indo-Asian News Service
Indo-Asian News Service

About 150 Indian students on Wednesday stopped India's consul general on her way to work, and escorted her to their dormitory to protest against the lack of security highlighted by the murder of a student.

Nitesh Kumar Singh, a sixth-year student from the St. Petersburg Mechnikov Medical Academy, died on Sunday of wounds, after being stabbed seven times on the chest by unidentified attackers near the dormitory. Singh's killing was the latest in a steady series of hate crimes amid growing xenophobia in Russia.

On Wednesday, students escorted Indian Consul General Jordana Diengdoh Pavel to their dormitory and complained about inadequate security and poor conditions.

"There should be more police, more lights in the areas where foreign students live,'' said one of the students, Ishweri Raggulan.

Earlier in the day, the students gathered in front of their university carrying placards reading "No to Nazism!'' and "Why is Everyone Silent?''

Russia has seen a marked rise in hate crimes in recent years. Rights groups say it is fueled in part by the authorities' reluctance to crack down on hate crimes and tackle growing nationalism. Prosecutions are rare, with many hate crimes treated as hooliganism, an offence that brings only short sentences.

Last year alone, 31 murders and 382 assaults were race-connected, according to the Moscow-based Sova human rights centre.

First Published: Sep 28, 2006 19:22 IST