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Concerns growing over threats against members of the Sikh community in Indiana

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Dr. Amandeep Singh
Dr. Amandeep Singh

Targeted attacks against Sikhs have been on the uptick since 9/11, but in Indiana, concerns are growing after Dr. Amandeep Singh received threatening phone calls and text messages at the office of his medical practice.

SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — Sikhs in Indiana say they’re being intimidated and harassed at an alarming rate in recent months, but they don’t believe they are the intended target.

Many members of Indiana’s Sikh community believe that the “attacks” have been directed at them out of a misunderstanding of who they are and the misinterpretation that being a Sikh is the same as being a Muslim. These attitudes come from the heightened fear of Muslims across the U.S.

President Donald Trump’s early executive orders implementing travel bans from seven Muslim-majority nations is just one example of a political act that has affected public attitudes about Muslims in recent months, but it’s not the only one. Members of the Sikh community in Indianapolis are hoping they can set the record straight, before things go too far.

Dr. Amandeep Singh was one of the victims — he said someone was sending him threatening text messages in mid-December, while he was in his office seeing patients. Amandeep said he felt a range of emotions after the threats, including fear for his family and his patients.

“Fear, especially if you have family, kids, the safety of your family and kids, that comes to mind first,” he told Indianapolis news outlet rtv6. “Then you try to make sense of it.”

But he hasn’t been the only victim.

Gruinder Singh started the Sikh Political Action Committee to represent the 10,000 Sikhs who live in the state of Indiana. He said in recent weeks they have had multiple instances of vandalism against businesses and even a confrontation involving a handgun.

Dr. Singh has been living in the U.S. since he graduated from medical school in 2003 in India. He currently serves as the chief medical officer at Indiana’s Monroe Hospital.

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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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