HomeIndian AmericanIndian Americans triumph in elections across several states

Indian Americans triumph in elections across several states

Neil Makhija became the first Indian American in Montgomery County outside Philadelphia to win an election to fill one of two majority party seats on the Board of Commissioners. He now oversees a $1 million budget and the board of elections in the third largest county in Pennsylvania, according to American Bazaar.

He is one of at least nine Indian Americans to win elections this week.

“We did something that had never been done before, which was to have an open primary where no one had the benefit of the party endorsement, and everyone was given a fair shot to run their best race,” Makhija told the Daily Pennsylvanian.

Alongside Makhija, Indian Americans Vin Gopal and Balvir Singh in New Jersey, Kannan Srinivasan and Suhas Subramanyam in Virginia, Priya Tamilarasan in Ohio and Minita Sanghavi and Vilk Vilkhu in New York State also won their elections.

Gopal, 38, was re-elected to Democratic state senator for New Jersey in the 11th Congressional District. He is the youngest member of the New Jersey State Senate and this marks his third term in office. Gopal’s campaign focused heavily on abortion, and last year’s Democratic efforts to provide tax relief.

According to the American Bazaar, Republicans pushed an agenda of offshore wind power and LGBTQ issues in schools in an unsuccessful effort to weaken Democrats.

Singh was also reelected to his position as county commissioner in Burlington, New Jersey. 2017 was the year he became the first Asian American and the first Sikh elected to a countywide office in New Jersey.

Srinivasan, an Indian immigrant, was elected to the Virginia state legislature for District 26. He ran in 2019 against Republican Loudon Treasurer, Roger Zurn, but did not win his seat.

Subramanyam won the Virginia state election for District 32. He is a Democrat delegate for the 87th district. Subramanyam was a tech advisor during Obama’s presidency, a health care and veterans policy aide on Capitol Hill and a clerk for the US Senate judiciary.

In Ohio, Tamilarasan became the first woman of color to be elected to Gahanna city attorney. She is also the first Democrat to hold this position.

She has served the city of Columbus for 12 years as an attorney with a specialization in criminal defense and legal family matters.

Indian Americans Minita Sanghavi and Vilk Vilkhu in New York State had also won their elections as Saratoga Springs Finance Commissioner and Brighton Town Justice in Monroe County, respectively.

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