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New England Indian Americans host talk to address rise in hate crimes against South Asians

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MIT-India
MIT-India

Ramesh Advani, Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Indian American Forum spoke during the Indian American Forum for Political Education in Massachusetts forum to discuss racism and hate.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (Diya TV) — The Indian American Forum for Political Education​-Massachusetts (IAFPE) and ​MIT-India, with the support of nearly 40 local community coalitions, hosted a panel discussion at MIT’s Wong Auditorium where matters of local racism were the topic of the hour.

“​IAFPE invites all Massachusetts based organizations​ ​and any other group ​who oppose hate, hate crimes, and racism regardless of membership ​race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, and disability ​to sign-on and stand together as a coalition,” the group said in a statement.

The event was held with the ultimate objective of discussing the recent spike of racially motivated hate crimes, such as the murder of Srinivas Kuchibhotla. Named “The Colors of the Commonwealth,” the panel served as a call to action for concerned Massachusetts residents to come together and discuss effective community responses, strategies, and resources to combatting racism and hate crimes, including; civic education, reaching out to law enforcement and government officials, and social activism.

Representatives from multiple Massachusetts organizations were in attendance, including ​the Boston Police Department Commissioner William Evans​, ​Attorney General’s Office Chief of Civil Rights Division Genevieve Nadeau, the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center Community Outreach Lead Kashif Syed and the New England Anti Defamation League Executive Director Robert Trestan.

“On behalf of the Forum, thank you to all our program speakers and our audience for participating in an insightful conversation at Colors of the Commonwealth,” said IAFPE President Sonali Lappin. “We look forward to ensuring we reach out to and include all groups and their perspectives in the diversity of this coalition. We value your work and the experiences of your membership around hate crimes, racism, and educating community. This is just the beginning of many more conversations and events that will help foster dialogue and spark action.”

The Colors of the Commonwealth

The Colors of the Commonwealth met at MIT’s Wong Auditorium to discuss the recent spike of racially motivated crimes across the U.S.

MIT-India Managing Director Mala Ghosh said that the number of community organizations that came together for the program was inspiring and itself a motivating call to action.

“It was an honor to have the two MIT faculty Kenneth Oye and Vivek Bald frame the panel with a reminder of the South Asian and East Asian immigrant history and highlight patterns of hate crimes and public policy against not only Asian Americans, but other communities of color,” Ghosh said. “We must understand the history and the political context of the current climate as we try to connect beyond the Indian and Indian American community. We must look to partner across religious, national, ethnic, class, race, sexual orientation, gender, and generational differences in-order to build a powerful coalition against hate. I am excited to bring the MIT-South Asian community and network into this discussion.”

The Indian American Forum for Political Education-Massachusetts (IAFPE), known as the Forum, is the oldest and largest Indian American organization for political education in the country. It is nationally recognized for its outstanding work to enhance political awareness among the Indian American community and encourage civic engagement through seminars, symposiums, and their flagship fellowship program in Massachusetts, ​which has well over 100 graduates around the country.

MIT-India is part of MIT International Science & Technology Initiatives (MISTI). MIT-India works with MIT faculty, students, and partners to build strong international connections, collaborations within South Asia, to advance crucial research with global implications, and help MIT students develop into true world leaders capable of shaping the future.

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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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