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Fresh attack in Aus, petrol bomb hurled at Indian

May 29, 2009 09:32 IST

In a fresh attack targetting Indians in Australia, a student suffered up to 30 per cent burns after a suspected petrol bomb was hurled at him in his home in Sydney.

According to local newspaper for Indian community, South Asia Times, 25-year-old Rajesh Kumar was quickly covered by a blanket by his flatmate after the attack on Thursday, an act which saved him from further injuries.

Kumar was sitting on his bed in the front room of his rented house when an unknown person threw what neighbours say was a small petrol bomb through his window. The explosion and subsequent fire left Kumar with burns to a third of his body.

The latest attack came as Shravan Kumar, a 25-year-old student from Andhra Pradesh, is fighting for life in a Melbourne hospital after being stabbed by a screwdriver by a group of teens in a weekend attack that also left three of his friends injured. Doctors have said they were not very optimistic about Kumar's recovery.

Another student Baljinder Singh, stabbed by two attackers with a screwdriver early this week, has been released from hospital on Friday

A New South Wales Fire Brigades spokesman said Rajesh Kumar's flatmate Arminder Singh did the right thing when he grabbed a blanket and threw it over his friend, extinguishing the flames.

"He was crying, on fire. He lay down on the ground and I put the blanket on him," Singh said, adding, "I told him everything was going to be OK. He was asking: 'Is my face OK?"

Singh, 33, said he was halfway between the laundry and kitchen when he heard the sound of smashing glass and his friend screaming. He and another flatmate, Chander Mohan, said they saw Kumar run out of his bedroom and out the front door with his back and arms on fire.

Singh and Mohan said the attack was terrifying.

"We could not sleep, we could not eat all night," Singh said.

They had moved into the house with Kumar and two other flatmates in February but were moving out again as soon as possible, Mohan said.

He said Kumar had no enemies and had not been in any trouble. "We don't know why," Mohan said.

Singh said he had been robbed on the street three times in the past two months.

Natasha Chaku in Melbourne
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