TOPEKA, KS (Diya TV) — The state of Kansas officially recognized Srinivas Kuchibhotla Thursday, declaring March 16 “Indian American Appreciation Day.” Kuchibhotla was the Indian engineer killed in the Olathe triple-shooting that left two others injured.
Gov. Sam Brownback signed the proclamation and denounced the racially-motivated hate crime.
“Kansas will remain committed to standing with the Indian community,” Brownback said. “We will always reject acts of violence and harm. We reject hatred in all its forms.”
The 32-year-old Kuchibhotla was killed after Navy veteran Adam Purinton allegedly shot at him and his friend Alok Madasani on Feb. 22. Purinton allegedly yelled “get out of my country” at the two men he believed to be Middle Eastern before opening fire on them at an Olathe tavern.
“This is a deplorable act that happened,” Brownback said. “We will not let it define us as a people.”
Madasani and Ian Grillot, a bystander who was injured himself while coming to the aid of the two Indian men, were both present at the Kansas capitol Thursday, where Brownback publicly apologized to and thanked the two survivors. Madasani thanked the governor and lawmakers for honoring Kuchibhotla and thanked people for the support.