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BRS leader KTR calls dropping of charges against US cop 'disgraceful'

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BRS leader KTR calls dropping of charges against US cop 'disgraceful'

Hyderabad, Feb 22 (IANS) Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) working President K.T. Rama Rao on Thursday termed the decision of a US court to drop criminal charges against a cop who ran over an Indian student named Jaahnavi Kandula last year as ‘disgraceful’ and ‘absolutely unacceptable’.

KTR, as the BRS leader is popularly known, also requested External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar to take up the matter with his US counterpart and demand an independent investigation into the matter.

He also urged US Ambassador to India, Eric Garcetti, to take up the matter with the US authorities and deliver justice to Jaahnavi.

“It is tragic that the life of a youngster with soaring ambitions has been cut short, but what’s even more tragic is the callous disregard for justice to the victim,” KTR posted on X.

A US court recently decided not pursue criminal charges against Seattle police officer Kevin Dave, who ran over Jaahnavi with a speeding police vehicle on January 23, 2023.

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Jaahnavi, a 23-year-old student from Andhra Pradesh’s Kurnool district, was killed after being hit by the police vehicle being driven by at a speed of 119 km/ph.

Jaahnavi was a master’s student at Northeastern University’s Seattle campus.

In September 2023, bodycam footage of another Seattle cop, Daniel Auderer, joking about the death of Jaahnavi had surfaced, triggering an outrage.

In a video released by the Seattle Police Department on September 11, the cop could be heard joking and laughing while discussing the accident.

In the clip, Daniel Auderer, the Vice President of Seattle Police Officers’ Guild, in a call with the guild’s president could be heard saying, “She is dead,” before bursting out into laughter and calling Jaahnavi “a regular person”.

He further said, through bursts of laughter, “Yeah, just write a check. Eleven thousand dollars.”

The clip ends with him saying: “She was 26 anyway, she had limited value”, getting her age wrong.

KTR, who was then Telangana’s Minister for NRI affairs, had said that he was deeply disturbed and extremely saddened by the ‘utterly reprehensible’ and ‘callous’ comments of the cop.

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He had also urged the US Ambassador to take up the matter with the US government authorities and deliver justice to the family of Jaahnavi.

–IANS

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