Washington: Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, the first ever Hindu elected to the US House of Representatives, has been called for active duty by the National Guard for which she is a reservist to help with a volcanic eruption in her native Hawaii.
"Gabbard has been called up for activation by the Hawaii Army National Guard to support their assistance to Hawaii County's response to the ongoing Kilauea lava flow," her spokesperson Heather Fluit said in a statement yesterday.
Gabbard, who is seeking re-election, will begin her active duty from today as she joins about 80 National Guard soldiers and airmen already on the ground.
Gabbard, 33, serves as a Military Police Captain in the Hawaii Army National Guard.
"During this time, she will be unable to accept media requests or make public statements related to her official congressional duties," Fluit said.
The term of her duty has not been determined.
"Her offices in Hawaii and Washington, DC will remain open and serving her constituents during this period. The duration of her duty is yet to be determined," Fluit said.
Gabbard was first elected to the US House of Representatives in 2012.
A strong advocate of India US relationship, she has been endorsed by Hindu American Political Action Committee.
She met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New York and presented him a copy of the holy Gita on which she had taken her Congressional oath in January 2013.
The US national guard is deploying troops in the rural Hawaii town as lava from Kilauea volcano slowly makes its way towards homes and roads.