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U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy dismissed by Trump Administration

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Vivek Murthy
Vivek Murthy

U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, center, after he is ceremonially sworn-in in Conmy Hall at Fort Myer, Wednesday, April 22, 2015, in Arlington, Va.U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, center, after he is ceremonially sworn-in in Conmy Hall at Fort Myer, Wednesday, April 22, 2015, in Arlington, Va.

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy said on Friday that he was replaced, just two years after his appointment by former President Barack Obama.

In a statement posted to Facebook, the 39-year-old Murthy said he “was blessed to have an extraordinary team of dedicated public servants who became my colleagues and friends” and highlighted the work done by his office to address addiction in the United States.

“Thank you, America, for the privilege of a lifetime,” Murthy said. “I have been truly humbled and honored to serve as your Surgeon General.”

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services did not immediately respond to Diya TV’s request for comment Saturday about Murthy’s departure. Murthy became the first Indian-American to serve as the country’s top doctor when he was confirmed by the Senate in 2014, a year after he was nominated. He said Rear Admiral Sylvia Trent-Adams, the current deputy surgeon general, will serve as acting surgeon general. The official page of the U.S. Surgeon General has been updated with her in that role.

Murthy, in a landmark report on addiction released in November, said dependency on opioids and other substances must not be looked on as a “character flaw,” in the first publication from a surgeon general hat has addressed drug and alcohol addiction.

“We will only be successful in addressing addiction — and other illnesses — when we recognize the humanity within each of us. People are more than their disease. All of us are more than our worst mistakes,” Murthy said in the statement. “We must ensure our nation always reflects a fundamental value: every life matters.”

Murthy was nominated for the post in 2013, he faced immediate and fierce opposition from the National Rifle Association and other gun rights advocates, who argued he would use the office to advocate for changing the nations’ firearms laws; Murthy had spoken out for mandatory gun-safety training and an assault weapons ban. Republicans, and some Democrats, also objected to Murthy for his previous political activism, such as when he co-founded Doctors for Obama in 2008.

He was narrowly confirmed by the Senate in 2014.

Murthy pointed to his background as the grandson of a poor farmer from India in what he called the “humbling” experience of being chosen as the nation’s top health official. He called it a “uniquely American story.”

“While I had hoped to do more to help our nation tackle its biggest health challenges, I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to have served,” Murthy said.

Here’s Murthy with Diya TV’s Ravi Kapur in an interview in 2015:

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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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