Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Dr Sharman Stone has criticised the Federal Government's handling of the Indian student affair, inferring that students have been treated poorly because the Government is "hungry for the extraordinary contributions the export education industry makes to the economy". Stone said students were vulnerable to exploitation and were often reluctant to report violence in case it affected their future residency application. "This problem will not be solved in India. Our reputation as a provider of excellent tertiary and vocational education and a tolerant and caring society is at stake," she said. She called for the government to make education agents accountable through the same accreditation, registration and monitoring regime as required for migration agents. "The quality and integrity of courses must be scrutinised. International students need to have sufficient financial means deposited upfront, because under the visa restrictions, their paid employment is not enough to support them," said Stone. "The welfare of these students needs to be seen as more important than their fee paying capacity."