Attacks Against Andhra Pradesh Students on the Rise in USA
From Mohammed Siddique
November 23, 2008
A series of violent attacks against Andhra Pradesh students in America has badly rattled the families of young boys and girls studying thousands of kilometers away from their homes.
Al ready such attacks have claimed six lives in the last one year while another student miraculously survived. In the latest such incident in Tennessee, P Shashank from Warangal district had a narrow escape when suspect robbers opened fire at him outside his apartments in the university campus on November 14. The parents of Shashank have left for the United States to be with their son, who was doing post graduation at the Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro and there is a question mark whether he will continue with the studies after the horrendous experience.
The earlier victims of such attacks were not so lucky. Those killed in murderous attacks either inside their homes or outside include: 24 year old Arpana Jinaga from Hyderabad. Arpana, working as an embedded technology expert at EMC corporation was found strangulated at her apartments in Redmond on October 31.
On October 22 another engineering student from Hyderabad 23 year old T Sowmya Reddy was shot dead. The student of Southern Illinois university was murdered in St. Louis Country Park far away from her university. Apparently she had gone with her cousin T Vikram Reddy, a software engineering working with a company in Chicago. A day later his body was also found in the lake in the same area. The case remains unsolved.
Kiran Kumar Allam and K Chandrasekhara Reddy, the two Ph. D students in medical sciences were shot dead in their apartment at the university campus. The police later arrested three black youth on the charges of double murder and described it a crime for gain. P Srinivas, another postgraduate student was also found murder in March in the United States while Jyothrimayi, pursuing post graduation in public health was killed in Brimingham in United Kingdom in May this year.
Shock and fear has gripped the families of thousands of students who migrated to the United States from Andhra Pradesh every year to pursue higher education and with the hope of settling down for good. But the series of murderous attack has put a question mark on their future. An estimate 30,000 to 40,000 students migrate to the US every years from the states. The fact that only the students from Andhra Pradesh were being targeted in the USA, conspiracy theories have started making rounds. Many people in the state say that the brilliant students from Andhra Pradesh were being deliberately targeted by certain forces.
But there are others who say that though such incidents are tragic but they are not isolated. “They could be part of the greater wave of crimes in the USA, which has a high rate of crime and murder”, said a US returned NRI from Seattle.
The parents of students studying in America are exerting pressure on the organizations of Indian immigrants in the US to take up the issue forcefully. One of them is Telugu Association of North America or TANA. Its president Komati Jayaram said that his organization will provide necessary information and guidance to the students about the security aspects. Explaining why these students might be becoming the target of such attacks, he said that while earlier the students from India used to study only in the bigger universities in big cities, now they are also heading for smaller universities or their allied institutions located in smaller cities and towns. “At such places, the students need to be more careful about their security”, he said.
Apart from the parents, the American Universities are also worried about the negative fall out of spate of such violence incidents. The universities spend considerable amount of money to hold programs in Indian cities to attract students in large number. According to the reports the North Texas University and its affiliated institutions are organizing programs on the issue of security for the foreign students to create awareness and confidence among the students.
Tags: Andhra Pradesh , Violence , India , Students
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