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Indian government urges media restraint

The Indian government has urged the country’s media to report responsibly on the latest attack on an Indian national in Australia.

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A 29-year-old Indian man is in hospital with burns to his hands, face and legs after being set alight in Essendon in Melbourne early yesterday.

India has asked its media to exercise restraint in reporting on such sensitive issues, saying it could aggravate the situation and affect bilateral relations with Australia.

“Under the circumstances, the media is advised to exercise utmost restraint in reporting on these sensitive issues, as it could aggravate the situation and could have a bearing on our bilateral relations with Australia”, foreign ministry spokesman Vishnu Prakash said.

The issue of Indians being attacked in Australia has dominated the media for months in India, where numerous 24 hour news channels have made it a rolling story since mid last year.

Police convinced latest attack not racially motivated

Melbourne police remain convinced the latest attack on an Indian man in Essendon wasn’t racially motivated.

29 year old Jaspreet Singh is in hospital with burns to his face, hands and legs, after being approached early yesterday by four men who burned his car and set him on fire.

Acting Prime Minister Julia Gillard says she doesn’t want to comment while the matter is under investigation, other than to say the federal government condemns all violence.

But the incident has made headlines overseas and been reported by BBC World News and the Times of India, which calls it ‘yet another’ racial attack on Indians in Australia.

And despite the foreign ministry’s advice to the media, India’s Overseas Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi, who’s responsible for Indians working or studying abroad, has rebuked

Australia for not preventing the attacks, saying his government wants to see results including the arrests of those responsible.