71-yr Indo-American contesting for Michigan Mayor’s post
A 71-year-old Indian-American is attempting to become the first Mayor from the community in the US state of Michigan, and has forged a coalition of various ethnic and religious groups to help Democrats take control of a Republican township in the suburb of this city.
Dr Syed Taj is the brother of Indian politician Syed Shahabuddin from Ranchi.
Taj, who unsuccessfully ran for the US House of Representative four years ago, says that the township government of Canton, a suburb of Detroit that he lives in, needs to reflect diversity of its resident and it is time that Democrats take control of its future.
If elected in the November 8 general elections, Taj would be the first Indian-American Mayor in Michigan. He is running for the post of Canton Supervisor, similar to the position of a mayor.
“We are running on the platform of diversity, transparency and accountability,” Taj said during one of his campaign trails in the town, which has a population of 100,000, including over 7,000 Indian-Americans.
Encouraging younger Indian-Americans to join the political mainstream, Taj said it took him about six months working with the Democratic party to prepare a diversity coalition panel of seven top seats in the Canton township.
Besides him, the panel includes one more Indian-American Dhaval Vaishnav who is the president of the Temple of Canton.
“If we (immigrants) stick together, we can make the difference,” he said, adding that it becomes more important at a time when Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, 70, has polarised the elections with his rhetoric and anti- immigrant statements.
“Donald Trump wants to make America Great Again which means make America White Again. This is no longer possible. The US is a country of immigrants. And he should realise that,” he said.