May 2021 \ Diaspora News \ DIASPORA NEWS
Indian-American confirmed as Associate AG

Indian-American civil rights lawyer Vanita Gupta ...

By Arul Louis
  • Vanita Gupta

Indian-American civil rights lawyer Vanita Gupta has been confirmed as the US Associate Attorney-General with the help of a breakaway Republican Senator overcoming stiff opposition from her fellow party members who accused the nominee of espousing “radical” policies.

Senator Lisa Murkowski gave her the crucial vote on Wednesday in the 100-member Senate, which is evenly divided between the Republican and Democratic parties, to assume the third-highest position in the Justice Department. Gupta is a legendary figure in the US civil rights movement having as a newly-minted lawyer won the release of 38 people, most of them African-Americans, who had been wrongly convicted by all-White juries on drug charges in a Texas town and also got them $6 million in compensation.

She went on to become the Principal Deputy Associate Attorney-General and head of the Civil Rights Division during former President Barack Obama’s administration. Gupta overcame a campaign against her estimated to have run close to a million dollars by conservative and right-wing groups portraying as a “radical” who was against law enforcement. But she also received the support of other conservative Republicans and law enforcement groups. The Senate Judiciary Committee, which has to give preliminary approval for Gupta’s confirmation, was deadlocked on her nomination for more than a month and the Senate bypassed it.

Tags: USA, Vanita Gupta