Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Victoria police still hostile to Indians

No doubt in part because the Indians have highlighted how useless they are

Indian groups standing guard at railway stations in Melbourne's west - in a bid to protect students from racial attacks - have been asked to move by police. The groups have been gathering at St Albans and Thomastown railway stations after a spate of assaults on Indians in the area, the latest on Kamal Jit, 23, who was bashed unconscious while walking home from the St Albans railway station on the weekend.

A Victoria Police spokeswoman said police had already boosted patrols on the Sydenham train line, the railway stations and at a St Albans shopping centre. She said Indians conducting their own security patrols should ``leave and let police do their jobs''. [And what would that be? Sit at the station doing paperwork, perhaps?] ``We have been talking to them about their concerns and because of that have increased patrols in the area,'' she said.

The group has complied to police requests to move but then returned the following night or gone to other locations, the spokeswoman said. She refused to confirm whether two men who stabbed a 20-year-old man in St Albans yesterday were Indians lashing out after being racially abused by the victim. No one has yet been charged over the incident. The victim allegedly said: "You are black. You don't belong here. Go away from our country". Police described the two men they want to speak to over the attack as aged between 23 and 29 years old and dark-skinned.

A car believed to belong to people attacking Indians was also torched in a factory near St Albans station yesterday. A Metropolitan Fire Brigade spokeswoman said firefighters were called to the blaze in Gratz Street at 11.10pm and have ruled it suspicious.

The attack on the 20-year-old is the first time Indian students appear to have retaliated against violent attacks against them as they walk home late at night from St Albans station. One man, who did not want his name published, said they took the action "in self-defence" after police failed to respond to their call for protection in the wake of attacks on fellow Indian students.

He disputed claims police were liaising with the Indian community group that gathers at the station each night to protect late travellers from attacks as they walk home. "The police don't care. In this suburb everyone is a migrant," he said. His claims were verified by another person who witnessed the attacks but did not want his name published.

The chairman of the Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria, Sam Afra, said it would be unacceptable for the Indian community to take the law into its own hands. "There is a danger this will become like a chain reaction with the victim becoming the perpetrator. We don't want to get to that," he said. Kapil Bajaj, spokesman for the Hindu Council of Australia, said the possible retaliation was worrying and the council would condemn such a response.

A Metropolitan Ambulance Service spokesman said the 20-year-old man stabbed in the early hours of Monday morning was treated at the scene before being transported in a serious but stable condition to the Royal Melbourne Hospital. Police said they believe the man was approached by two men in Walmer Avenue around midnight and a knife was produced. Detectives from Keilor Downs are appealing for any witnesses to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

In other incidents on the same night, a group of Indians were abused by a group of males and one Indian was punched but when the police arrived, "they did not do anything", The Age was told.


The breastfeeding trend goes over the top

Australian mothers beg for black market breast milk, risking serious disease transmission

MOTHERS desperate to feed their babies breast milk are advertising for donated human milk in an unofficial milk black market that bypasses health authorities. The trend is part of an international return to wet-nursing, according to advocates who say the "breast is best" message is getting through. A Gold Coast milk bank has fielded more than 160 requests from New South Wales women wanting to find or donate milk. The natural baby food is proven to contain antibodies against illnesses and infection and has been linked with everything from higher intelligence to fewer allergies.

But mothers without their own supply are left to go it alone in NSW, risking passing on diseases including HIV and hepatitis through unscreened milk. Mothers Milk Bank founder Marea Ryan said mothers were forced underground because banks - including her own in Queensland and another in Western Australia - can only cater for a local supply. "The interstate mums have to have a donor as a private arrangement - another mother who is happy to give them milk," she said. "I think it is increasing as people become a lot more aware of the benefits of breastfeeding."

She added that mothers should see blood tests from donors before feeding their baby donated milk. One Sydney woman who arranged frozen breast milk over the internet said she copped abuse, despite insisting on a medical clearance. "I got lots of mothers telling me it was disgusting, asking how could I give another woman's milk to my baby," she said. "It was full on." The Sydney mother blamed her feeding troubles on a past breast reduction and mastitis, coupled with her daughter's whooping cough. "It was horrible. I'm a big believer in breast feeding," she said. "Knowing she was sick when she was born, you just want to give them the best."

Breastfeeding Australia national spokeswoman Carey Wood said World Health Organisation guidelines recommended "cross-feeding" ahead of formula. "We know the best thing for babies is their mothers' own milk," she said. Ms Wood said breast milk was produced by mothers specifically for the age of their baby. "Milk for an 18-month-old or two-year-old, that's not exactly what a newborn needs," she said.

The association does not condone private arrangements and asked a Senate Inquiry for a national network of breast milk banks in 2007. In the US, breast milk has sold online for as much as $1.90 for 20ml.


Greenie Gets Comeuppance?

Bob Brown hit with huge legal bill

GREENS leader Senator Bob Brown has accused the Tasmanian Government of trying to force him out of the Federal Senate. Dr Brown last week received a letter from Forestry Tasmania, a wholly-owned State Government business, demanding he pay nearly $240,000 in legal costs by June 29. The Greens Senator was ordered to pay the fees by the Federal Court, after he lost on appeal his long running court case against Forestry Tasmania to halt logging in the Wielangta State Forest on Tasmania's east coast. Dr Brown claimed the logging was endangering the survival of the threatened wedge tail eagle and Swifts parrot and was therefore contrary to national environmental laws.

The longtime environmental campaigner said yesterday he was not refusing to pay the court-ordered $239,368 to Forestry Tasmania. But he said he did not personally have the funds available to pay the legal demand, and could not raise them in the next three weeks.

The letter from Forestry Tasmania's lawyers threatens it will seek to declare Dr Brown bankrupt if he cannot pay the required sum. Any senator declared bankrupt or insolvent - or who is forced to enter into a payment schedule with creditors - is immediately disqualified from holding a seat in Federal Parliament.

Dr Brown said he had no doubt the Tasmanian Government and other "minions of the logging industry" were seeking to force him from parliament because of his long term quest to end all logging of Australia's native forests. "I’m not complaining (about the legal costs); these are typical pressure tactics being used by the logging industry,'' Senator Brown said in Hobart. "But I will not back off either from defending Tasmania's magnificent forests - not now, not ever.''

Senator Brown will now appeal to wealthy donors to help raise his legal debt, as well as look to raise funds through the auction of his own collection of environmental memorabilia.


Aussie cities on world's most-liveable list

I am pretty dubious about all this. I think Tokyo should have been first. It is infinitely safer than any Western city and has everything generally. Its only problem is very expensive accommodation as far as I know

AUSTRALIAN cities occupy five of the top 20 places in a British survey ranking the liveability of 140 of the world's major centres. Melbourne ranked third in the world, behind Vancouver in Canada and the Austrian city of Vienna in the Economist Intelligence Unit's 2009 Liveability survey.

It assessed 140 cities based on stability, health care, education, infrastructure and culture and environment, giving each one a rating out of 100.

Perth was equal fifth with Calgary in Canada, with Sydney sharing ninth place with Zurich in Switzerland, Adelaide in 11th place and Brisbane 16th on the list. As well as Vancouver and Calgary, Canadian cities also featured strongly in the top 20, with Toronto (4th) and Montreal (17th). The New Zealand cities of Auckland and Wellington finished 12th and 23rd respectively.

US centres were well down the list. Pittsburgh ranked highest, in 29th place. The highest-ranked Asian city was Osaka in Japan (13th). The next highest was Hong Kong (equal 39th with Madrid, Spain) followed by Singapore (54th) and Seoul, South Korea (58th).


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