London: Universities UK, the representative
body of varsities in the UK on Wednesday sought to reassure Indian
and other international students that the country is "safe and
tolerant" with low levels of violence and street crime.
Expressing sadness at the killing of Indian student Anuj Bidve in Salford on December 26 in an unprovoked attack,
Professor Eric Thomas, president of Universities UK, told PTI
that such incidents were rare in the country.
"We at Universities UK would want to reassure current and
future Indian students and their parents that this kind of
incident is thankfully exceptionally rare. Compared to other
countries, the UK remains a safe and tolerant country with low
levels of violence and street crime," he said.
Prof Thomas recalled that a recent survey by the British
Council showed that only a very small proportion of students
had ever experienced any kind of crime here.
He said: "On behalf of all universities in the United
Kingdom, I want to express our deep sadness at the death of
Anuj Bidve. This is a devastating tragedy for his family and
friends and the death of a gifted individual in such a manner
is a loss for us all".
He added: "The British people have been appalled by this
terrible event and Monday night`s vigil bore witness to
national and local feeling. The police are investigating the
murder and we are confident that they will bring the
perpetrators to justice".
The organisation said that UK universities took the
safety and well-being of all students very seriously.
Institutions offer induction and orientation sessions for
international students which include advice on safety.
The British Council also publishes an online personal
safety guide for international students in the UK, it said.
With 133 members and offices in London, Cardiff and
Edinburgh, Universities UK promotes the strength and success
of UK universities nationally and internationally.