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Peter Jacob Indian American social worker looks to unseat NJ Congressman Lance

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Peter Jacob, a 30-year-old Kerala native raised in Union, N.J., ran unopposed as a Democrat in the state's June 7 primary election.

Peter Jacob, a 30-year-old Kerala native raised in Union, N.J., ran unopposed as a Democrat in the state’s June 7 primary election.

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Peter Jacob, an Indian-American Democratic social worker from New Jersey, is seeking to unseat Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ) this November in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Jacob ran unopposed in this month’s primary election for the seat Lance has occupied since 2009. It’s the same seat which Upendra Chivukula — the first Indian-American to be elected to the New Jersey state assembly — made an unsuccessful play for in 2012, falling short by more than 50,000 votes to Lance.

Another Indian-American candidate, Thomas Abraham, ran to unseat Lance in 2008 and received less than one percent of the vote. The 7th Congressional District is touted to be a strong arm for the GOP, the party has retained the seat for the last 100 years, except during a brief six-year period from 1975 through 1981.

However, Jacobs is looking to break the precedent, using the fact that Lance has voiced public support for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as a vehicle to propel him to office. The district has a large amount of voters in the foreign demographic, Jacob said.

“It is ironic to me that Leonard Lance has endorsed Donald Trump, because Trump has preached out against the type of politician that Leonard Lance is,” he said. “When they [his parents] arrived in 1986, they had three things with them. Just $20 in their pockets, hearts full of hope and six-months-old me in their arms.”

While in college, Jacob worked as a student activist and leader. He spent time working with Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, the YWCA and the International Institute.

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Missing Hindu woman found mutilated in Pakistan

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SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) – The mutilated body of a Hindu woman was found in a field in southeastern Pakistan. Police say 40 year old Daya Bheel was murdered in the latest suspected attack against minorities in the Muslim-majority country. Authorities say they have arrested some suspects but have not determined a motive.

The Khosla family has donated nearly 2 million dollars to the Nudge Institute to help fight poverty. The philanthropists have donated millions of dollars for many other causes.

And disgraced FTX founder Sam Bankman-fried pleaded not guilty to eight different counts of wire fraud, securities fraud, and conspiracy before a U.S. federal court in the Southern District of New York. U.S. prosecutors allege that under Bankman-Fried’s direction, FTX, once considered one of the largest and most-trusted cryptocurrency exchanges, transferred billions in customer assets to his trading firm, Alameda Research. If convicted of these charges, Bankman-Fried faces up to 115 years in prison.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Christmas crash kills Indian American toddler

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Tragic news out of Nevada. Authorities say an Indian American toddler has died in a devastating Christmas day car crash and his mother is in critical condition fighting for her life. Authorities say the accident happened on a busy Las Vegas boulevard and they were returning home from a trip in California.

Anil Beephan is now the first Indian American Republican ever to be elected to the New York State Assembly in Albany. So far only Indian American Democrats have been elected to the state legislature. Beephan will also become the first minority to represent Dutchess County and at 29 years old, he’s the youngest GOP rep in the state legislature. He’s currently in the tech industry and has also worked as a volunteer firefighter.

Vice President Kamala Harris has named Indian American Rajeev Badyal to a key national advisory group, responsible for strategy and recommendations to improve and maintain space policy. Badyal already works for Amazon, helping launch satellites into orbit. 

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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EXCLUSIVE: Warriors host first-ever Bhangra Night

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SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) – The Golden State Warriors first-ever Bhangra Night made its debut during the Warriors-Jazz game at the Chase Center in San Francisco. The Warriors say it’s a chance for the team to connect with the Bay Area’s rapidly growing South Asian community and fan base. Only Diya TV was on hand to capture the festivities. This change from the annual Bollywood night was supposed to take place in 2020 but was postponed because of the pandemic.

A federal jury in San Francisco has convicted Sivannarayana Barama of insider trading. Authorities say he used the quarterly financial performance of Palo Alto Networks before that information was released to the public and then traded in that company’s stock while that information was still confidential. Barama worked in IT for several Silicon Valley companies.

U.S. Border Patrol caught more than 4000 Indians illegally crossing the Mexico border in October and November. That’s more than double compared to the same time frame last year. An Indian man recently died climbing a border wall in Texas. The Biden administration is struggling to contain a surge of illegal immigration at the southern border.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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