US-President-Barack-ObamaWASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Serving in the U.S. government hasn’t been the main focus or goal of Indian-Americans since the country opened its doors to immigrants of the South Asian nation in the 60s, instead, they have spent the majority of their time striving for success in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.

During their time spent traveling down this road, some have found themselves in the rare position of government power and public administration — Vivek Murthy and Bobby Jindal worked in the public health field; Iqbal Siddiqui made a splash in agriculture; Karan Bhatia and Arun Kumar in commerce and Vivek Kundra and Aneesh Chopra in information technology. The majority have returned to the private sector after their brief government tenure.

The U.S. Foreign Service has been widely regarded as difficult to crack for years, specifically because of the strict security demands that follow the Foreign Service Officers’ Test, an exam required in order to qualify for diplomatic status in the 15,000-member pool.

Nearly a half century after the Immigration Act of 1965 saw a large number of Indians arrive stateside, second-generation Indian-Americans have begun their attempt to inhabit foreign service in large numbers. Several of them now are working in senior level posts of the U.S. diplomatic corps.


Last week’s nomination of Geeta Pasi by the Obama administration as its envoy to Chad made for the third such instance an Indian-American became a U.S. ambassador. Previously, president Obama nominated Richard Verma as ambassador to New Delhi and Atul Keshap to Colombo.

Exact figures remain unavailable, but there are believed to be dozens of Class I foreign service specialists of Indian origin currently serving, several of which are in line to become ambassadors. Among them, Krishna Urs, who is the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in Madrid, and Uzra Zeya, deputy chief of the U.S. mission in Paris.

Not everyone has been pleased with the uptick in adversity from the Obama administration. The growing presence of Indian-Americans has left multiple Pakistani diplomats with an unsettling feeling — the country’s ex-ambassador Hussain Haqqani questioned how an increased presence of Indian-Americans would effect policy decisions.