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Prime Minister Narendra Modi urges U.S. to take ‘farsighted’ approach on Visas

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NEW DELHI (Diya TV) — Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged U.S. officials visiting the country and back home to adopt a “balanced and farsighted perspective” on the movement of skilled immigrant workers amid tensions currently surrounding the U.S. visa program that threaten to wreak havoc on Indian software services companies.

“Both countries can work even more closely, including in facilitating greater people-to-people linkages that have over the years helped contribute to each other’s prosperity,” Modi said after his meeting with a visiting delegation of 26 U.S. lawmakers.

The delegation, which also met Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister for Electronics and Information Technology, in the Capital on Tuesday, said the two countries were willing to work together to sort out trade and economic issues. Their conversations were of course filled with dialogues referencing the proposed changes to the current H-1B visa program, a work visa that Indian IT companies are heavily dependent on to move their talent stateside. At least four U.S. lawmakers have proposed changes to the H-1B or skilled workers immigration process.

Prasad told the delegation he respected America’s efforts to “reassess and reappraise” the relationship between the two nations, but urged lawmakers to “keep in mind the value the Indian talent has contributed in making the American economy more competitive.” He also emphasized the fact India is expected to become $1 trillion digital economy in the next five to seven years, which could represent hefty profits for companies such as Amazon, Microsoft and Google, as well as for e-commerce.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte led the delegation, he said both sides discussed the story of President Donald Trump — the 45th president entered the White House with no experience in government or politics. “He is a businessman and he likes to do deals and he also wants to do deals with India and other countries around the world,” Goodlatte said. “He is also assessing what deals the United States has done in the past that are good and which ones he thinks may be not so good.”

There are currently between 300,000-350,000 Indians working in the U.S. courtesy of the H-1B visa.

Texas Congresswoman Sheila Jackson said both countries are concerned with “the youth bulge and the importance of training our young people… (and) will work together to create those opportunities for them and certainly technology is a method of doing so.”

A delegation of Indian IT companies, led by the National Association of Software and Services Companies, is expected to discuss the visa issue with U.S. lawmakers this week.

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BREAKING: Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

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BREAKING: Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87 | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died at 87. She was the oldest sitting member of the court. Justice Ginsburg was only the second woman named to the Supreme Court. A cultural and feminist icon, Ginsburg was appointed to the Court by President Bill Clinton, and her passing will set off a showdown in the coming weeks before the November election. In a message left this week as her health waned, Ginsburg said “my most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell shortly after Ginsburg’s death was announced said the Senate will conduct a vote to replace her and President Trump is expected to put forth a nominee to fill the seat in the coming days.

An Indian American doctor filed a federal lawsuit against the Aurora, Colorado police department after one of their police officers pointed a gun at him on his own property while he was trying to park his car. The incident was captured on video. The officer, Justin Henderson, has been suspended for 40 hours without pay and will be required to attend de-escalation training. 45 year old Dr. Paramjit Parmar, who is known in Aurora for his aid to refugees, believes race affected how he was treated and said Henderson’s punishment is “terribly inadequate.”

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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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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