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Sree Sreenivasan ‘Exhilarated and Grateful’ to be named NYC’s Chief Digital Officer

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NEW YORK (Diya TV) — Sreenath “Sree” Sreenivasan has a new job.

The social media guru made headlines when he was laid off from his job as the chief digital officer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, and has now been appointed to a position in the same capacity for the entire city.

Mayor Bill de Blasio made the news official Monday, announcing that Sreenivasan will work to increase access the City-led technology initiatives, will reach out to the tech community on the city’s behalf and be the chief of digital policy citywide.

“With Sree Sreenivasan’s wealth of experience, I am confident that he will work to promote transparency, access and progressive values with our digital tools, helping spread access across the five boroughs,” the mayor said in a statement.

“I am exhilarated but also grateful,” Sreenivasan said after the announcement was made. He’s completely aware of the challenge which lies ahead — Sreenivasan is joining an organization with more than 3,000 employees and deal with the digital needs of eight million New York residents.

“What happens in New York has an impact on the world as people pay attention to what happens in NYC,” he said. “There is a lot of importance to what we do as we’ll be setting standards that will help other cities.”

Sreenivasan has already begun the early planning stages of accomplishing the vast task. “New York City has already been very digital,” he said crediting the two previous chief digital officers, Jessica Singleton and Rachel Haot. “I see my role as chief digital officer as more of a chief listening officer. I want to listen to ideas for the city.”

The last few years have proven more than ever that the world is connected through technology, he said, and Sreenivasan plans to look at the use of technology in other countries as part of his plan, particularly in India.

“India has a lot to learn about technology and its metropolitan areas have a particular obligation and need to get technological infrastructure right. Technology can change lives. Millions of people can be let in if it is deployed in the right way, but millions of people can be left out if it is deployed in the wrong way.”

Now age 45, he was one of the early movers in the digital age, building a reputation as a tech maven adept at using social media and he passed on his knowledge to students at Columbia University, where he served as a faculty member of the journalism school and as the school’s chief digital officer. Additionally, while at the university, his efforts were key in the co-founding of the South Asian Journalists Association, a group of over 1,000 journalists of South Asian origin in the U.S. and Canada, serving as the organization’s first president. He continues to serve on the board.

He ended his 20-year tenure at Columbia to join the Met in August 2013, becoming the institution’s first digital officer and lead the venerated museum into the social media age.

His axing came as a shock to the online community earlier this year, but Sreenivasan took this as an opportunity to try something different: he reached out to his online community about his job loss and asked them for suggestions on how he can spend his time.

“I was telling people I need help,” he said. “I got this job because the folks at City Hall saw my notice about being available.”

Currently on a speaking tour in India, Sreenivasan will start his new job in October. Until then, he’ll be busy studying.

“I have to learn about city government, about municipal governance,” he said. He admits he doesn’t have much working knowledge about how municipalities function, however, he knew little to nothing about art when he joined the Met. But he sees this as a challenge more than as a case of having taken on more than he can handle. “That moment will probably come later,” he said. “If you aren’t nervous, aren’t worried, there’s something wrong. That anxiety is what makes you successful.”

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Harvard to host 17th annual India Conference this February

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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (Diya TV) — For the 17th year in a row, the graduate students at Harvard University will host an India Conference. It will take place during the weekend of February 15-16, 2020. Two days of exciting discussions through panels, mixers and networking will fill the halls of the Harvard Business School and Kennedy School of Government.

The theme for this year’s conference is Foresight 20/20 – a look at what to expect from India in 2020 and beyond. As one of the largest student led conferences in the USA, the Harvard India conference attracts the biggest headliners from every field – from politics, business, entertainment & the arts. And this year is no different.

India Conference
India Conference at Harvard

With more than 100 speakers and 1000 attendees, the conference promises to have something for everyone. This year’s biggest draw from the entertainment genre is veteran Bollywood actor and self proclaimed ambassador to India, Anupam Kher. Kher has a long standing list of accolades within the film industry. In addition to his acting roles, he has been a producer, director and teacher at his own acting school. Most recently he played the role of Dr. Vijay Kapur on NBC’s primetime drama ‘New Amsterdam‘.

Some other notable speakers this year include founder of the India Today Group, Aroon Purie, Indian Olympic athelete Dutee Chand, comedian and actor, Vir Das, partner at Softbanks’ Vision Fund Lydia Jett & politician and India’s ruling party (BJP)’s sherpa to the G20, Suresh Prabhu.

The harsh winter in Harvard doesn’t seem slow down or dull these brilliant minds in any way. The India Conference at Harvard continues to retain its standing as the conference of choice for deliberating issues ranging from technology, media, politics and eduction to creating solutions for India’s path towards global leadership. The event features brainstorming sessions and sincere discussions on the very real and large scale problems that are uniquely Indian.

Diya TV is a media sponsor to the event and will be on-site covering conference. To receive a 20% discount use code RDAY20 here and to know more about the conference or speakers, head to the IndiaConference.com

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Indian Ambassador, Shringla speaks to U.S. Congress about Kashmir

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AMB. Shringla speaks to congress about Kashmir | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON (Diya TV)  — Indian Ambassador to the U.S. Harsh Shringla met with members of Congress at a private roundtable briefing, hosted by Southern California Congressman Brad Sherman. Sherman, who has been a supporter of India, took to Twitter recently to share his concerns about Kashmir and said serious questions about Kashmir were asked at the briefing.

President Trump is being urged to fix the H1-B visa process and do away with country-specific limits, with the latest effort for reform being spearheaded by 60 U.S. business school deans and CEO’s.

In an earthquake, seconds matter. So on the anniversary of the deadly 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake that rocked Northern California, state officials announced the launch of America’s first statewide earthquake early warning system.

Tabla Maestro Zakir Hussain will be coming to Boston next month to perform at the Berklee India Exchange, where he will also be conferred with an honorary doctorate by the esteemed music school. A Zakir Hussain Scholarship at Berklee is also being established.

And we have incredible video of three kids from India rescuing their dog from a snake that’s equal parts courageous and nuts.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Federal Court rules Trump must turn over tax returns | Diya TV News

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Trump Tax Returns

NEW YORK (Diya TV) — A federal judge ruled President Trump must turn over eight years of his personal and corporate tax returns to Manhattan prosecutors, striking down the President’s argument that a sitting president cannot be criminally investigated. The ruling was quickly appealed and this case could end up in the Supreme Court to answer the constitutional question of whether presidents can be charged with a crime.

Meanwhile, the President celebrated a victory by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, as a federal appellate court upheld most of the FCC’s repeal of net neutrality. It also ruled the FCC cannot preempt state net neutrality laws, meaning the rules of the road in states like California remain in place.

The U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee announced their Asia-Pacific and Non-Proliferation Subcommittee will be holding a hearing asking State Department officials and human rights activists to chime in on Human Rights in Kashmir, the Tamils of Sri Lanka, Muslims in Assam and the human rights situation in Pakistan, which includes the Sindh Province.

Lockheed Martin announced they will build F-16 wings exclusively in India, helping in integrating Indian industry into the $165 billion fighter aircraft market.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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