Toronto: With new Indian students increasingly becoming victims of ignorance about Canadian laws, the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce (ICCC) is taking up the matter with the Immigration Minister to address the problem.
Murarilal Thapliyal, president of the oldest Indo-Canadian organization, says: "Rampant ignorance among Indian students about Canadian laws is costing these students and the Indo-Canadian heavily. They (students) are dying in road accidents and drowning in ponds because they don't know/heed local laws. They are falling victim to depression and some committing suicide because they don't know whom to turn to it."
Since agents in India do most paperwork for them, these students and their parents know very little about Canadian laws and rules.
"The Indo-Canada Chamber is urging the immigration minister to add an acknowledgement form to admission forms for students. Indian students coming to Canada and their parents must sign an acknowledgement form, saying that they have read basic Canadian laws and that they know the consequences of their violation," says Murarilal.
This acknowledgement, he says, should be a precondition for admission to Canadian colleges.
"We want all Canadian colleges to open counters at airports to provide post-landing services to these students. Each student must get a 10-get booklet about Canadian laws and rules -- dos and don'ts at public places, consequences of violating traffic rules and not paying rents, emergency numbers in case they feel unsafe/have stress issues, NGO and consulate phone numbers," says the ICCC president.
"Any student found later found violating this acknowledgement should be shown no leniency and deported," he says.
A lawyer by profession, Murarilal says he is distressed to see a spurt in the number of cases of Indian students not paying rents and failing to vacate premises.
"This has caused a lot of resentment in our community against these students."