Indian students living in Australia have slammed Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Simon Overland’s advice that they should not work as taxi drivers and should “”look as poor as you can” to avoid being assaulted.
Overland had made the comments at an international students’ safety forum attended by about 150 people in the city on Saturday.
“Don’t display your iPods, don’t display your valuable watch, don’t display your valuable jewellery. Try to look as poor as you can,” Overland said before adding that foreign students should try to avoid living in Melbourne’s poorer suburbs where crime rates are higher.
However, Federation of Indian Students of Australia secretary Gautam Gupta blasted the advice, saying that Indians should not have to look “poor” to feel safe.
“What is he saying? Indians don’t have the right to be rich? And if they look rich, do they maybe have to get bashed? On one hand, everyone should look poor. On the other, don’t live in poor areas. I don’t understand,” The Age quoted Gupta, as saying.