Queensland premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s “sarcastic” comments questioning who would want to travel to India at this time, has left many in the community offended.
When asked about the prospect of Australians being able to travel overseas by Christmas, the Queensland leader replied: “Where are you going to go?”
“Are you gonna go to India?” she added.
Journalist Kishor Napier-Raman said Queensland had had a growing Indian community for decades.
“That’s who might want to go to India,” he posted on Twitter.
Human Rights activist Sarah Joseph tweeted, “I hate this so much. So offensive and parochial. So devoid of empathy and ambition.”
“I bet the thousands of nurses and doctors who are originally from India who are working hard to help other Queenslanders and make their health system robust in the event of a generalised outbreak would love to see their family again, for a start,” said Dr Neela Janakiramanan.
Australia has a 700,000-strong Indian diaspora. However, thousands of them have not been able to travel to India since mach 2020, when Australia closed its borders due to the Covid-19 pandemic.