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Obama appoints Indian American Kamala Lakhdhir ambassador to Malaysia  

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Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir

Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Indian American Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir, a lifetime career member of the Foreign Service, has been nominated by President Barack Obama to the post of ambassador to Malaysia.

If appointed, Lakhdir would become the fourth Indian American in the U.S. Foreign Service elevated by the Obama administration. Ambassadors to India and Sri Lanka, Richard Verma and Atul Keshap, have already both been confirmed; Geeta Pasi, who has been nominated as ambassador to Chad has also yet to be confirmed.

Lakhdir previously served as the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs from 2011 through 2015, according to the White House’s announcement.

She additionally served as the U.S. Consul General in Belfast from 2009 through 2011, worked in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs as the Director of the Office of Maritime Southeast Asia from 2007 to 2009 and prior to that as the Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs from 2005 to 2006.

 Since joining the Foreign Service in 1991, Lakhdhir has also served as a Political Officer in Indonesia and as a Consular Officer in Saudi Arabia.

Lakhdhir received a B.A. from Harvard University and an M.S. from the National War College.

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Sukhpal Singh arrested in Tusli Mandir hate crime case

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NEW YORK (Diya TV) – New York police arrested a man for allegedly sledgehammering a statue of Gandhi outside a Queens Hindu Shri Tusli Mandir. Twenty seven year old Sukhpal Singh is charged with criminal mischief and a hate crime for allegedly destroying the statue and defacing it with spray paint outside Tulsi Mandir in Richmond Hill last month. 

India and France agreed to set up an Indo-Pacific partnership to roll out development projects, expand strategic cooperation, and work closer to deal with pressing global challenges such as a food crisis triggered by the Ukraine invasion. 

More than a million customers in Puerto Rico are waiting for electricity to come back on after Hurricane Fiona hammers the region. The Dominican Republic is under a hurricane warning as well. 

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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“Serial” subject Adnan Syed released, conviction vacated 

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SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — A judge on Monday vacated the murder conviction of Adnan Syed, years after the hit podcast “Serial” chronicled the case of this Muslim American and cast doubt on his role in the 1999 slaying of his former girlfriend. The judge said prosecutors made a compelling argument that Syed’s conviction was flawed and that he should immediately go free. The state now has 30 days to decide whether to seek a new trial or potentially stop the case.

Violence erupted in Leicester, England after Hindus took to the streets to protest violence against their community by Muslim extremists. Islamist counter protesters hurled glass bottles and a Saffron flag was also desecrated by the mob in front of the police. This comes after targeted attacks on Hindus following the Asia Cup India-Pakistan cricket match last month when armed Islamists attacked Hindus and their homes in the area. Hindus are now demanding action against the violence.

Thousands of world dignitaries paid their respects during Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral including U.S. President Joe Biden, Indian President Droupadi Murmu, and Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Paramvir Singh killed in brazen gas station robbery 

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In Mississippi, surveillance footage at a gas station shows the horrific shooting that claimed the life of Indian American store clerk Paramvir Singh during a brazen daylight robbery. The video appears to show Singh cooperating inside the shop and telling the suspected robber Chris Copeland to take all the cash. Moments later, Copeland opens fire. Officers eventually arrested Copeland several hours later.

In a surprise statement during a regional summit in Uzbekistan, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi publicly changed his posture with Russia directly to President Vladimir Putin over the ongoing battle in Ukraine. Modi said to Putin “today’s era is not an era of war. And I have spoken to you on the phone about this.” In response, Putin said to Modi “we will do our best to stop this as soon as possible.”
The summit is also being attended by Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Chinese President Xi Jingping.

Indian American political activist Shefali Razdan Duggal has been confirmed by the US Senate as the country’s next envoy to the Netherlands, adding to the growing list of Indian Americans in President Biden’s administration.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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