NRI's played critical role in President Barack Obama re-election victory : Dr Mukesh Hariawala
After nearly 16 months of hectic nationwide campaigning , incumbent US President Barack Obama won a decisive reelection as the Democratic party candidate beating Republican rival Mitt Romney with a convincing margin.
It was a difficult election in US history particularly with a limping recession coupled with high unemployment figures that at times were close to 10pc . This economic meltdown with wars in Afghanistan and Iraq had served a damaging blow to the US economy, with outsourcing of jobs to China and India being very sticky election issues.
The NRI population in US exceeds 3 million or 1 percent of total population according to American Community Survey, with most of the immigrants in very high professional positions in Universities, Hospitals , Law firms and successful entrepreneurship business ventures. In 2000, Fortune magazine, estimated the wealth generated by Indian Silicon Valley IT entrepreneurs at around USD 250 billion.These astonishing wealth statistics also makes Indians one of the highest donors to political parties and a major attraction as a community to national politicians including Presidential candidates' fund managers.
In an exclusive interview to ANI , Eminent Harvard trained Heart Surgeon, Research Scientist and Healthcare Economist who was recently conferred the " India's Most Admired Surgeon " award by Governor of Maharashtra K Sankaranarayanan said that " The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin ( AAPI ) is the largest ethnic medical organization in the United States and represents the interests of more than 50,000 doctors. This is a highly attractive body with a resourceful and influential membership ".
Every US President from George Bush , Bill Clinton to Barack Obama have participated at AAPI.national meetings, fund raisers and other events organized to support them. Many members even take time out from their busy schedules to participate in town hall meetings and network within the community, said Dr Hariawala who is also a Patron Life member of AAPI.
Dr Hariawala emphasized, that traditionally US based NRI's tend to support the Democratic party candidate due to their soft immigration policies and friendly support to local small businesses. However, new trends show a migration of many towards the Republican candidates due to aggressive tax benefit policies to the affluent class. In spite of having a somewhat non friendly posturing towards outsourcing jobs to India, President Barack Obama's approach to having an inclusive team with top positions being offered to Indians in the core administration has kept him very popular in the ethnic community. The high voter turnout of NRI's was crucial in the recently concluded presidential election which had a meaningful role in tilting the race in favor of President Obama.
" This second 4 year term of Barack Obama will herald in a strong Indo - US partnership particularly in the Healthcare and Investment sectors which will be of mutual benefit to all its stake holders. President Obama's personal high respect for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will further help solidify this bond of both countries and its people ", concluded Dr Hariawala.