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Meet Sruthi Palaniappan, the youngest Indian American Delegate at the DNC

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Sruthi Palaniappan

Sruthi Palaniappan

PHILADELPHIA (Diya TV) — Eighteen-year-old Sruthi Palaniappan, who hails from the Midwest state of Iowa, is the youngest Indian American delegate at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

“It’s so amazing to see the political process first-hand,” the young political activist said. Palaniappan said she’s been most inspired by the speeches delivered by New Jersey Sen. Corey Booker and First Lady Michelle Obama.

“Booker completely captivated the audience,” she said.

She currently serves as precinct captain for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Before the Feb. 1 Iowa Caucus, Palaniappan, a senior at Iowa’s Linn-Mar High School organized volunteers to canvass the precinct, knocking on doors to garner support for Clinton.

On the day of the Caucus, Palaniappan verified delegates allotted to Clinton, and convinced voters who were still on the fence. While she was successful in convincing a number of voters who had yet to decide whom they were going to support between Clinton and Sanders, Palaniappan found that those who had already decided on the latter candidate were much more stubborn to sway.

“Once you’ve aligned yourself with a candidate, it’s harder to switch sides,” she said.

When the convention began Monday, Sanders supporters incessantly booed party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, accusing her, Clinton and senior party leadership of “rigging” the election. “This situation will get better. Sanders’ supporters did respect what he had to say,” Palaniappan said in response.

Sanders spoke at the Iowa delegates’ breakfast July 26. “He said we have to unify to beat out Trump,” said Palaniappan, adding: “This is the message we have to bring back to our communities.”

Palaniappan’s father – Palaniappan Andiappan – is also attending the DNC, as a member of the credentials committee.

Palaniappan, who will ship off to Harvard University this fall to study government and global health, said she hopes to one day run for public office. She seeks to “impact the day to day lives of people.”

She was just one of 50 young women from around the nation who participated last month in the 2016 Distinguished Young Women of America competition. Palaniappan won two awards at the competition: $1,000 for scholastics; and $2,000 for the Wintzell’s Oyster House My Town Award in memory of Betty Copeland. She was also selected as a finalist and received a separate $2,500 scholarship.

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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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