Canberra: Terming the attacks on Indian students in Australia as "opportunistic, not racist", Michael O`Brien, a senior minister in the South
Australia state government, on Friday said his country will not tolerate these attacks.
"We are taking all necessary steps to curb these attacks which are opportunistic in nature. We don`t see them as racist attacks. They are criminal acts, acts of theft. But it seems, the sentiment here is not the same," said O`Brien, the minister for employment, training and further education.
"We are here to assure that we are very tolerant society. Indian students in Australia are culturally enriching for us. We will not tolerate attacks on Indians students," he said after a meeting with Overseas Indian Affairs Minister V. Ravi here.
The Australian minister said that it is very clear that parents in India are very concerned. "We are assuring that we will look after them and they are welcome in our country," O`Brien added.
Ravi said: "The minister and I discussed several issues related to education and science. He has assured me that his government is taking step by step to ensure Indian students` safety."
Dozens of Indian students have been attacked in Australia throughout this year, making India react strongly. Even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh took up the issue with his Australian counterpart. The soaring sentiment in India, forced many Aussie authorities, including its prime minister, to tour India, to assure parents about the safety of their wards down under.