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Modi leads prayer at groundbreaking of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Indian Prime Minister Modi traveled to Ayodhya to be part of the prayer service and groundbreaking of the Ram Mandir. It’s a significant victory for Modi and the majority BJP government, who ran on a platform to return a Hindu temple to this historic site, where a Muslim mosque also once stood. With both venues destroyed, India’s Supreme Court ruled late last year a Hindu temple would be allowed to be built on this specific land, with a Muslim mosque to be built nearby.

Meanwhile, in New York’s Times Square, hundreds of Ram Mandir supporters chanted “SitaRam” to celebrate the start of construction, while billboards with the image of the mandir and Ram were shown above. Down the street from the celebration in Times Square, hundreds of protesters yelled “shame,” claiming India’s government was anti-Muslim and fascist.

Rep. Carolyn Maloney, who has been in Congress representing a New York City district since 1993, declared victory in the Democratic primary over Suraj Patel. But Patel is not conceding yet. In a lawsuit he filed against the Board of Elections, a judge has ordered more ballots be counted since a number of mail-in ballots were deemed late. In response, Maloney’s team says her lead was at 3,762 votes, with only about 1,200 absentee ballots thrown out due to postmark problems. So it does not appear Patel has a path to victory.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Biden to nominate Ravi Chaudry to Air Force post

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Biden to nominate Ravi Chaudry to Air Force post | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON DC (Diya TV) — President Joe Biden plans to nominate Indian American Ravi Chaudry as the Air Force’s next assistant secretary for installations, environment, and energy. Chaudry is a former Federal Aviation Administration official who served in the Air Force for more than 20 years. If confirmed he would take over a massive portfolio spanning Air Force and Space Force installations worldwide. 

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group Foundation announced the appointment of its new Chairwoman, Sonu Ratra, the co-founder and President of IT consulting and talent solutions provider, Akraya as well as the founder of Women Back to Work. Ratra is the first woman and person of color to lead the SVLG Foundation.

Indian American women techies,  Susmita Dutta and Shruti Haldea,  took center stage as Apple unveiled its next line-up of products, including MacBook Pro, next-generation AirPods, and other products and services. 

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Calgary and Edmonton elect mayors of Indian descent | Diya TV News

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Calgary & Edmonton elect mayors of Indian descent | Diya TV News

NEW YORK (Diya TV) — In a historic first, the new Mayors of Calgary and Edmonton, Canada are of Indian descent. Jyoti Gondak and Amarajeet Sohi will be leading their respective cities. Gondek is also Calgary’s first ever female Mayor. In both elections, voters expressed a desire for change, and largely rejected candidates opposed to public health measures to deal with COVID-19.

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren wants Amazon to break up after a Reuters report found that the e-commerce giant ran a systematic campaign of creating knockoffs and manipulating search results to boost its own private brands in India, one of the company’s largest growth markets.

In tech news MindBody is acquiring fitness company ClassPass, which allows users to pay for a monthly subscription, allowing them to access a number of classes across a spectrum of fitness genres. The company was founded by Indian American Payal Kadakia.

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Hindus targeted, homes set ablaze in Bangladesh over social post

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NEW YORK (Diya TV) — 66 houses were vandalized and at least 20 homes of Hindus set on fire in Bangladesh over an alleged social media post considered blasphemous. This comes amid protests by the minority community against incidents of temple vandalism during the Durga Puja last week.

Colin Powell, the first Black US Secretary of State whose leadership in several Republican administrations helped shape American foreign policy has died from complications related to  COVID-19, He was 84.

Diwali celebrations have resumed in Fremont and Cupertino, California after a one year hiatus due to the pandemic. Actor and comedian Omi Vaidya was the Grand Marshall at the Festival of Globe event in Fremont. And Congressman Ro Khanna was one of several elected officials to attend the Bay Area Diwali event organized by the Cupertino Chamber of Commerce.

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