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MIT India conference brings together innovators to focus on Modi’s ‘Start Up India’

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MIT India Conference
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (Diya TV) — In an effort to celebrate the advancements in technology by Indian people worldwide, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in partnership with the MIT Sloan School of Management, and the local MIT community, hosted the inaugural “Startup India” conference on April 3.

Diya TV was an official sponsor of the event, which put a spotlight on the growing Indian startup market, recognized globally as the third-most active growing startup region — the South Asian nation boasts north of 4,000 startups, eight of which are valued at more than $1 billion. The U.S. and UK are one and two respectively.

Since taking on the reigns Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi announced several programs from, ‘Swacch Bharat’ to ‘Digital India’. In January the Indian government announced the ‘Startup India’ program, seeded by a $1.5 billion fund and a string of tax breaks, the program became the first such of its kind of be introduced by the country’s policymakers focused on entrepreneurs, investors, and startups companies.

The program was formally announced after Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Silicon Valley in Sept. 2015, where his announced focus was set on “startups, innovation & technology.”

During his visit, Modi also shared his ‘Digital India’ vision with the business heads of Apple, Google, Microsoft, Cisco, Qualcomm, Facebook, Adobe, etc.

Ashish Sahani, Research Fellow at Harvard Medical school

Ashish Sahani, Research Fellow at Harvard Medical school

Ashish Sahani is a research fellow at Massuchusettes General Hospital & Harvard Medical School and was thrilled to be at the event, he said “The amount of interest in the Startups in India is at an all time high. The entrepreneurial tide in India is very palpable and world is looking forward to us as the next economic superpower.”

Additionally, this year’s conference also featured innovative projects being developed by MIT students and researchers with potential application for India. Panels focussed from growing sustainably in complex markets to opportunities in social entrepreneurship.

MIT alumni have launched 30,200 active companies and have created more than 4.6 million jobs. As a direct result, these companies are generating roughly $1.9 trillion in annual revenues, and if MIT were a nation, it would possess the 10th largest economy in the world.

Aside from celebrating the achievements of Indians globally, the conference also provided a platform to discuss the future of collaborations between India and the rest of the world — speakers slated to make appearances included Arvind Subramanian, chief economic adviser, Government of India; Mukesh Aghi, President, US-India Business Council; Gururaj Deshpande, founder and chairman of Sycamore Networks and Ashish Hemrajani, founder and CEO of BookMyShow.com.

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Recall efforts against Kshama Sawant moves forward

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Recall efforts against Kshama Sawant moves forward | Diya TV News

SEATTLE (Diya TV) — The recall effort against Seattle City Councilwoman Kshama Sawant can move forward after a ruling by a King County judge. Superior Court Judge Jim Rogers said four of the six accusations against Sawant are legitimate. They include misuse of city resources, misuse of her position by letting protesters into City Hall, relinquishing her duties of office to an outside political organization and leading a protest to Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan’s house despite her address being protected due to threats from her time as a U.S. Attorney. 

Now, the group of residents leading the recall must get about 11,000 valid signatures before the recall gets on the ballot. Sawant in response said this battle is just the latest attempt by corporate interests and Mayor Durkan to derail her efforts to reform the city and announced she will lead a grassroots campaign to fight the charges.

Meanwhile, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan is facing heat as well from U.S. Attorney General William Barr, who suggested prosecutors consider filing charges against her over the mass protests this summer that led some protesters to establish a police-free zone in downtown Seattle. In a tweet, former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara offered his help to Durkan pro-bono.

Indian Prime Minister Modi turned 70 years old and received birthday wishes from around the globe, including from President Trump, who called Modi “a great leader and loyal friend.”

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Indiaspora & AAPI data survey Indian American voters

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Indiaspora & AAPI data survey Indian American voters| Diya TV News

SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — At a virtual event featuring the former CEO of the Democratic National Committee, Seema Nanda, Democratic Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi and Republican Ohio State Representative Niraj Antani, non-profit Indiaspora teamed up with AAPI Data to reveal the growing political power of the Indian American diaspora. The joint report says 66% of Indian Americans currently favor Vice President Biden, and 28% favor President Trump. The study shows an enormous rise in political engagement from the community. There are 1.8 million Indian Americans in the U.S. who are eligible voters and both sides of the aisle recognize the need to further engage Indian Americans, who AAPI Data notes is now the largest part of the Asian American community, surpassing Chinese Americans.

Eric Trump, President Trump’s son, took part in an Indian Voices for Trump event in suburban Atlanta. It was an indoor rally with appropriate social distancing measures in place. Trump was on hand to win support from the community in a vital state that will be tightly contested this fall. Georgia, like North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Florida, Michigan and Texas are considered in play and have growing Indian American populations.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Eight South Asian candidates run for San Ramon office

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Eight South Asian candidates run for San Ramon office| Diya TV News

SAN RAMON, California (Diya TV) — We’ll introduce you to the eight candidates of South Asian descent running for San Ramon’s mayor and city council this year. Located in California’s East Bay and renowned for great public schools, San Ramon has seen an explosion in its Indian American population over the last decade. Now community members want to give back and help the city map out its future.

President Trump flew to California to meet with Governor Gavin Newsom and other state officials to discuss the wildfires that have engulfed the state for weeks. Newsom and his team of scientists made it a point to tell Trump climate change is “exacerbating” the wildfires. Toxic air lingers on from California to Washington and new projections indicate the smoke will spread from the Northwest and head to the Midwest.

President Trump announced Indian American Judge Amul Thapar is on shortlist to be named to the Supreme Court if a vacancy happens during his term, joining the likes of Senators Ted Cruz, Josh Hawley and Tom Cotton.

Silicon Valley venture capital fund Sequoia Capital has invested in the most Indian startups that have become unicorns. Sequoia’s Indian arm has invested in eight unicorns, including Byju’s and Unacademy. SoftBank and Steadview Capital are second with seven unicorns each.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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