PTIWashington, DC, United StatesMar 01, 2017, 01.55 AM
Indian-Americans have launched an online petition calling upon US President Donald Trump to "clearly and unequivocally" denounce the fatal shooting of an Indian engineer in an apparent hate crime in Kansas city.
"We call upon President Donald Trump to state clearly and unequivocally that he denounces this incident. We would also like the US Department of Justice and local law enforcement to investigate this murder as what it is, a hate crime," said an online petition launched on the White House website yesterday.
"Anything less will be an injustice to the victims and their families," said the "We the People" petition which has so far gathered more than 54,000 signatures.
President Trump in his first address to Congress did acknowledge the attack that killed an Indian engineer for the first time, but devoted only part of one sentence to it, and this five days after it occurred: "Recent threats targeting Jewish Community Centres and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries, as well as last week's shooting in Kansas City, remind us that while we may be a nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its forms."
The petition requires 100,000 signatures by March 26 to earn a response from the White House. Launched by one SV on February 24, 2017; the petition says the "fatal shooting" of an Indian engineer allegedly gunned down by a Kansas man on February 22 must be treated as a hate crime.
Joining the Indian American community, Congressman Earl Blumenauer said this hate crime and others like it must be condemned in the strongest possible terms, especially by this administration which has taken extreme government action against immigrants and has done nothing but signal intolerance.
"This extreme rhetoric and action is unacceptable for a US President. He cannot continue to single out and target specific races and religions. Trump must start sending different signals, starting with expression of deep sympathy and rejection of bigotry," said the lawmaker who was part of a Congressional delegation that has just returned from India.
Americans across the country and millions of Indian Americans were shocked and horrified, he said.
"The lack of acknowledgement or sympathy from Trump comes as information from his own administration says there is no proof showing his executive action banning Muslims will make us safer, and as we are seeing a rise in hate crimes, in particular the desecration of Jewish cemeteries and houses of worship," the Congressman said.
"This needs to stop now. Trump should promote tolerance, inclusion and mutual support," he said. Indiaspora said the murder of Srinivas Kuchibhotla is a shocking and tragic incident.
"Based on the currently available facts as they have been reported, we believe that this heinous murder clearly fits the definition of a hate crime. Such hate-filled and xenophobic violence has absolutely no place in America," said MR Rangaswami, founder and member of board of directors, Indiaspora.