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Indian-American Leaders Launch Effort Against President Trump’s Immigration Ban

WASHINGTON, (PTI): Two Indian-American lawmakers along with two former top Obama Administration diplomats have launched a community-wide effort to oppose the “unlawful, unconstitutional, and un-American” executive orders that impacts the immigrant community in the US imposed by President Donald Trump on seven Muslim countries.

The lawmakers – Pramila Jayapal and Raja Krishnamoorthi – joined by former Obama Administration official and top Indian-American leaders urged the community to stand united and fight jointly against these executive orders.

The news conference was organised by Asian American Pacific Islander Victory Fund (AAPI) yesterday.

Ms Jayapal has emerged as one of the national figures in fight against executive orders that impacts the immigrant community in the US.

“Last week’s executive orders on immigration has thrown the country to chaos,” she said, adding that Mr Trump’s attack on immigrant and refugees community ignored everything that is great about this country.

“This is not normal and it is not constitutional. It also makes us far less safe as a country,” she said, noting that the executive orders gives fodder to those who do want to harm America.

“It undermines our place in the world as global compassionate democratic leader,” she said as she lashed out at Republican Hindu Coalition for supporting the executive orders.

“Today a group calling itself as Republican Hindu Coalition will announce its support for un-American executive orders. And to them I would say, shame. Shame for trying to divide the Indian-American community. As a Hindu, I can tell you that this group does not represent the much much larger Indian American community that honour our birth countries commitment to religious freedom and democracy,” Ms Jayapal said.

Indian-Americans, she said, “will not be bullied” by this President or any group that seems to divide the community.

“The Republican Hindu Coalition does not represent us. As Indian Americans, I can tell you, we believe deeply in pluralism, in freedom of religion, in freedom of speech and in a democratic diverse society,” Ms Jayapal said.

The executive order issued by Mr Trump is “an assault on the United States constitution. It hurts economy and working families and it divides Americana and not unify them,” said Mr Krishnamoorthi, the lawmaker from Illinois.

“I am proud to be Indian American, I am proud to be Hindu American and I am proud to be an immigrant,” he said urging Indian Americans across the country to mobilise opposition to these executive orders, which are “unconstitutional”.

“I am here today not only as former State Department official, but also as an Indian American, as Hindu, an immigrant and most importantly as a proud American to speak out against this executive order that was issued by President Trump which imposes an unjust, un American and we believe unconstitutional ban on immigrants and refugees from certain nationalities and certain faiths,” said Nisha Desai Biswal, the former Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia.

Published Date: Thursday, February 2nd, 2017 | 01:27 AM

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