The Indian American Public Affairs Committee (IAPAC) Sacramento Chapter conducted Indian American Awareness Campaign with special guest Congressman Dr Ami Bera at Hagan Community Center Rancho Cordova, California State in USA on April 2nd 2017 from 11AM-12:30PM. Amerish Babulal "Ami" Bera is an American physician who has been the U.S. Representative for California's 7th congressional district since 2013. Along with Ami Bera, two other distinguished guests "Scott Meyers - Child Welfare Coordinator at Folsom Cordova Unified School District", and "Nirav Patel - US Federal Asst Attorney General" also joined this Campaign.
First Deepak from IAPAC welcomed all guests and invited IAPAC representative Mr Ashwani Dhall and Indian Association of Sacramento President Ajit Natu to deliver welcome speech. Mr Ashwani Dhall said IAPAC is a grassroots organization formed to keep Indian Americans engaged in local, political and social issues. “We are a group of people of Indian-origin who are doctors, small business owners, hoteliers, IT professionals, executives, essentially people from all fields, who had been closely involved in the local politics during last year's general elections," he said.
Mr Natu said in view of recent racial crimes happened and things going around, Unity is not an option, its mandatory now. Mr Deepak invited Dr Bera, Meyers and Patel to the dais and address the audience. Dr Bera said Xenophobia and racism have no place in America, and we as a nation need to stand up to these hate crimes -- starting with the President. "Everyone has to stand up, speak, and push back these things; otherwise you will have no voice. President Mr Trump has to initiate more pushback the way past president Mr Bush did back in 2001 in response to the hate crime related incidents happened after 9/11. Go to any State across this country, you have Indian American doctors, entrepreneurs, engineers working in fully integrated into the community. So, we are a part of the fabric of America. I think it's important for the community to come together and let America know that this is not okay. It's not who the US is. I request to bring all your children to these kinds of meetings as they are the future of this country" he said.
Mr Meyers said on an average there have been about 20% increase in hate crimes nationwide in year 2016. "Being Folsom Cordova Unified School District initiated preventive measures such as social emotion classes for all grades. We have been taking measures to encourage positive behavior in our schools including elementary, middle and high schools in our school district. We encourage feedback from all parents", he said.
Mr Patel said US Federal Laws covers all counties of California State and hate crimes, biased crimes and civil right violation incidents will be investigated by his team of attorneys and helping FBI and California State Attorneys and local law authorities. "We have a task force in place here at Sacramento. We want to call 911 and local law enforcement authorities in the event there is situation involving hate crimes, biased crimes and civil right violation incidents", he said.
Aswani Dhal, Deepak Gilra, Bhaskar Vempati, Sanjana Patel, Satej Chaudhary, Ajit Natu, Keyush Shah,Gururaj Narsimha,Neha Patel, Niraj Patel, Manohar Mandadi,Venu Mallesara, Nitisha Gilra, Jagan Chidela, Geetha Chidella, Sriram Raghavendran, Jaya Badiga, Mohan Katragadda, Kaustubh Upadhye, Vandna Shrama, Orith Moses, Y K Chalam, Milauni Nagar, Mrigank Nagar, Laxmi Rao, Raajesh Ganeshan, Gayathri Ganeshan, Saurav Goel, Vandna Sharma, Madhuri Natu, Bhavani Ravulapalli, Venkat Nagam, Nag Dondapati, Natarajan Gutta, Rekha Legala and many other volunteers have helped to organize this vigil ceremony.
The awareness campaign with special guest Dr Bera was attended by several community leaders, non-profit representatives and public in large numbers including but not limited to below:
Aswani Dhal - IAPAC Chair Person
Deepak Girla et al - IAPAC
Ajit Natu et al – IAS
Nataraj Gutta et al – California Telugu Samithi
Manohar Mandadi et al – Telugu Association of Greater Sacramento (TAGS)
Venu Mallesra- Kannada Sangha of Sacramento
And many volunteers from other non-profts around in Greater Sacramento.