Dr Vikrant Kishore discussed the Indian community’s perspective on Australian Federal Election with Melbourne based Mr. Manoj Kumar, who is affiliated with the Australian Labor Party, and is the Chairperson of the Subcontinent friends of Labor.
Vikrant Kishore: Manoj, what is your view on the current federal election?
Manoj Kumar: Current election is going very tight between two parties, but it is going for change for better health system, better aged care, better climate, and better education promised by Labor.
Vikrant Kishore: What according to you are the main concerns of the Indian community during this election?
Manoj Kumar: The subcontinental community major concerns are again better health system, better education system, way to permanent residency for students and others, jobs etc. Labor’s promises to biggest investment in aged care and 50 urgent emergency care clinics will help more of our migrant community members and others for jobs and wellness. Creating 20,000 more places in the University to fill gaps for skills will also help subcontinental community. Labor promises way to more permanent residency for workers against the guest workers system promises of liberals. More permanent residency will help community of equality and to share Australian values and contribute to Australia.
Vikrant Kishore: Do you think the political parties are paying attention to the growing Indian diaspora in Australia? And are they taking into account the needs of the Indian community, especially in the Indian community strongholds such as Lalor in Victoria, and Parramatta in NSW?
Manoj Kumar: Yes, both political parties are trying best to reach to the subcontinental diaspora, especially Indians with their policies and election commitments. However, the community are educated and well understand politics to decide themselves about whom to support and vote. Being a labor activist, still I support labor policies are aligning more in the interests of our subcontinental diaspora to support their wellness, jobs, and education. Yes, few seats are on radar where diaspora voters are a deciding factor in Victoria and NSW.
Vikrant Kishore: You have been raising issues of climate change, and working on environmental issues, how much is the climate issue dominating this election?
Manoj Kumar: Every third Australian feels about importance of tackling climate changes. However, both major parties promised zero emissions by 2050. Labor promises 43% emissions cut by 2030 against liberals promises of 26%. Also, labor promises of 10,000 apprenticeship in clean and renewable sectors that will help to provide skills availability to act in emission cut. Liberals have not declared anything like this.
Vikrant Kishore: Thank you Manoj for sharing your perspective with our audience.