A band of residents is calling on the state government to consider Tarneit as the location for Wyndham’s long-awaited Indian cultural precinct.
The Wyndham Indian Culture Precinct Action Committee believes Wyndham Village Shopping Centre would be the ideal location for the precinct, with Indian restaurants, grocery stores and the like already creating an informal Indian hub.
The suggestion comes a month after Wyndham council recommended that a multicultural sculpture and performing arts park be constructed at President’s Park in Wyndham Vale for the Indian cultural precinct following a feasibility study.
The report’s findings come two years after the state government allocated $50,000 for Wyndham council to conduct a study into an Indian precinct and $500,000 for construction. The report will go to Multicultural Affairs Minister Robin Scott for consideration.
But committee president Sonika Sha said President’s Park had no existing Indian culture and was not an appropriate site.
“We should not use that park for any particular community, because a park should be for everybody using it,” she said.
“A precinct represents a certain culture – in Tarneit, we have a large Indian population.
“It doesn’t make sense to us, why [President’s Park] was chosen.”
Wyndham councillor Intaj Khan, who also believes the precinct should be based in Tarneit, said the consultation process had been poorly run and should have been advertised through local and Indian media, not just the council’s website. He said President’s Park was not a true reflection of Indian culture.
“If you go to Chinatown, you can get Chinese food, Chinese clothes,” he said. “In Lygon Street, you can get pasta and pizza.”
A petition calling for the precinct to be located in Tarneit has so far attracted more than 130 signatures. For more information, go to bit.ly/2Digf7m