Australian authorities condemn attack on Nitin Garg

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New Delhi, Jan.4 (ANI): Australia's Acting Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, has strongly condemned the fatal attack on Nitin Garg in Melbourne.

Gillard said today, "I am obviously worried and distressed to see any act of violence and to see a murder as violent and callous as this one. I unreservedly condemn it. Our sympathies go to the young man's family.

"This has happened in the west of Melbourne, it has happened not far from where I live. It is very distressing for the community in Melbourne's west and for the Australian community overall.

"I would say to the people of India who obviously will be watching this news and the family in India grieving the loss of this young man that Australia does condemn this attack. We are a nation that overwhelmingly is an open, tolerant, multi-cultural, welcoming society. That is the image of Australia; that is the reality of Australia. This incident is to be condemned. Now we have to let the police do their work and find who is responsible."

Gillard reiterated that Australia "is a nation that welcomes international students. More than half a million international students come and study here each year. We want to make them welcome. This is a welcoming and accepting country. As a Government we have worked with our state and territory colleagues and also with universities and individual education providers to make sure that the message of new practical measures to support students are available".

She added that Australia "has no toleration for racism in any form. We want to make sure that people who come to our country, whether they come as new migrants, as students, as visitors are made welcome.

The State of Victoria's Acting Premier, Rob Hulls, said "The tragic death of a young Indian lad is abhorrent, it is a heinous crime and it is something that the police are putting all resources into investigating and finding the culprit".

The Acting Premier added that it was important not to jump to conclusions at this stage. "I think it's important that police be allowed to get on with the job of investigating this heinous crime." (ANI)

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