The Age, a daily newspaper reports claims that the toll of recent attacks on Indian students in Australia was much greater than what federal government has admitted. The paper said that state and territory coroners have refused an application for data on the deaths of overseas students in Nov 2008.
Jennifer Coate, a spokeswoman for Victorian Coroner said that the information cannot be made public because it was not exhaustive. She also said, "The nationality and occupation of someone who has died is not required to be automatically recorded."
While in Feb, the Indian government had stated in Parliament that 51 overseas students died in that year with 34 dying of 'unknown' causes. Fourteen cases were cited as accidents and three as death from illness. But an investigation carried out by The Age daily have founded that the death toll is around 54 with most coming from India, Korea and China.
The Age daily quoted a leading expert on international education, Monash University business professor Chris Nyland, as saying that there was a need for a federal advisory body on student safety. Nyland also called for mandatory statistical reporting of international student deaths.