You are here
Home > Immigration > Successful businessmen or fraudsters & go-getters?

Successful businessmen or fraudsters & go-getters?

the trio - Baljit Singh, Mukesh Sharma and Rakesh Kumar

Melbourne, August 7, 2015: The Victorian Indian community has suddenly come under the spotlight this month with Baljit ‘Bobby’ Singh, Rakesh Kumar who run and manage St Stephen Institute in Reservoir and Mukesh Sharma who runs Symbiosis Institute in Footscray being charged with a series of offences relating to an alleged immigration racket involving Australia Post delivery drivers, after raids across Melbourne earlier this month.

Police in raids across Melbourne on August 5, Wednesday night, also seized $8.5 million worth of assets, including a 2014 Ferrari, a 2015 Range Rover, six properties and $180,000 in cash.

The trio face charges of defrauding the Commonwealth and falsifying documents including police checks and student records, in relation to two training colleges.

Among the allegations the colleges allegedly charge international students fees of up to $10,000 without providing any training.

If the reports are to be believed, the colleges have raked up over $9 million in fees from international students as well as approximately $2 million in government funding because of their Registered Training Organisation status.

The AFP and Border Force this morning also conducted a number of raids at Australia Post facilities in Melbourne with the co-operation of Australia Post, checking the visas of drivers provided by Singh.

BT believes so far, no immigration-related charges had yet been laid.

Baljit Bobby Singh or ‘Bobby’ as he is known as is one of Australia Post’s so-called ‘super-contractors’ – having at least 16 post and parcel delivery contracts in Melbourne, delivering to nearly 20,000 customers.

The ABC’s 7.30 program claimed to have seen an Australia Post internal spreadsheet which shows for just 4 of those contracts, one of Singh’s companies, Oz Trade and Services, receives around $60,000 a month from Australia Post. If that figure was indicative of the mean average for Bobby’s contracts, he would have been in receipt of $240,000 per month from Australia Post alone.

Bobby, 34, appeared in Melbourne Magistrates Court on Thursday, charged with five criminal offences. He has been granted bail. The two other men, Mukesh Sharma, 42, and Rakesh Kumar, 37 – who is Mr Singh’s brother-in-law – were also arrested and bailed on similar charges on Wednesday night.

Bobby allegedly heads the group that brings international students to Australia on student visas who are often promised a working visa or permanent residency at the end of their course. It has been further alleged that the courses are a sham and the students are sub-contracted to Australia Post, for which they were allegedly being asked to pay kick-back.

Australia Post has now terminated Bobby’s contracts to supply labour to distribute and sort mail.

The government website – training.gov.au shows both colleges have had their registrations suspended in full as of 5 August 2015. It says the RTO’s registration is suspended in full. Under section 38(2) of the NVR Act, the organisation must not:

  1. enrol a student in a suspended VET course or part of a suspended VET course
  1. allow a VET student to begin a suspended VET course or part of a suspended VET course

iii. provide or engage in any training or assessment activities of any kind related to a suspended VET course or part of a suspended VET course

  1. issue any AQF certification to any student
  1. publish or broadcast an advertisement relating to a suspended VET course or any part of a suspended VET course; or
  1. cause to be published or broadcast an advertisement relating to a suspended VET course of any part of a suspended VET course.

A casual careful scan of the two institutes’ websites brings an uncanny design and plan similarity between the two entities. One may en wonder if they were both culmination of an idea germane in a single mind planning or advising on the two entities.

Not only the websites look too similar, either of them have not time tables or term dates.

What is really stunning is the script of the two CEO’s messages on their websites. Except one small paragraph (in red) which separates the two, rest of the two messages are identical.
(See below).

Talking to BT, an elder from the Indian community, on the condition of anonymity, said, “we have been here more than 45 years, my children’s children have been born here and I have never felt the disdain I now can detect for Indians in the eyes of locals. I really hope crime statistics do not get too obese with Indians written all over them. I wish these young go-getters apply their drive to the top in formative ideas”.

– DM


CEO message:
St Stephen Institute of Education

Welcome to the St. Stephen institute of technology (SSIT), one of the leading vocational training and educational institute in Melbourne (Australia) with an aim to promote academic excellence by providing quality education in an intellectually stimulating environment.

SSIT is motivated by its fundamental mission to impart holistic quality education to students, and empower them with knowledge, skill and competence and make them self-reliant, enlightened and socially committed citizens of the country.

With immaculate academic ambience, state-of-the- art infrastructure, futuristic facilities and pronounced emphasis on quality education and overall development of the personality, SSIT has emerged as the top performing and leading institute which offers a broad range of accredited vocational education and training programs at our campus which is conveniently close to major shopping, restaurant and entertainment centres, and is well serviced by public transport.

We fully understand the challenges the students may experience in their quest to achieve their dream career. We therefore seek to support our students not just by providing academic support but also by looking after their personal welfare and wellbeing.

At SSIT, we help our students develop interesting and challenging careers by imparting skills that are in high demand globally. We give our students a solid foundation to build on with experience and further studies. Students graduating from SSIT will have the opportunity to either enter into relevant workforce arenas or pursue further studies in universities to achieve their career goals.

Friends, we remember that the students are the biggest stake-holders in the entire academic scenario. We have great affection for modern go-getter and dotcom generation you belong to. We offer you a vast space of trust and support. All of our staff members work with rare energy, clarity and focus to maintain and enrich the enviable academic legacy.

I am sure when a vision begins to form everything changes. Let us together steer our academic ship to safe harbor. Our Campus is calling – Here is one stop destination for all students seeking excellence in their career. Be a part of revolution and partner in excellence.

Good luck and wish you a promising career!

Baljit Singh, CEO St Stephen Institute of Education


CEO message:
Symbiosis Institute of Technical Education

Welcome to the Symbiosis Institute of Technical Education (SITE), one of the leading vocational training and educational institute in Melbourne (Australia) with an aim to promote academic excellence by providing quality education in an intellectually stimulating environment.

SITE is motivated by its fundamental mission to impart holistic quality education to students, and empower them with knowledge, skill and competence and make them self-reliant, enlightened and socially committed citizens of the country.

With immaculate academic ambience, state-of-the- art infrastructure, futuristic facilities and pronounced emphasis on quality education and overall development of the personality, SITE has emerged as the top performing and leading institute which offers a broad range of accredited vocational education and training programs at our campus which is conveniently close to major shopping, restaurant and entertainment centres, and is well serviced by public transport.

We fully understand the challenges the students may experience in their quest to achieve their dream career. We therefore seek to support our students not just by providing academic support but also by looking after their personal welfare and well-being.

At SITE, we help our students develop interesting and challenging careers by imparting skills that are in high demand globally. We give our students a solid foundation to build on with experience and further studies. Students graduating from SITE will have the opportunity to either enter into relevant workforce arenas or pursue further studies in universities to achieve their career goals.

I am sure when a vision begins to form everything changes. Let us together steer our academic ship to safe harbor. Our Campus is calling – Here is one stop destination for all students seeking excellence in their career. Be a part of revolution and partner in excellence.

Good luck and wish you a promising career!

Mukesh Sharma, CEO, Symbiosis Institute Footscray.

Leave a Reply

one × four =

Top
error: Content is protected !!