Indian among 28 naturalised at White House ceremony
Washington: Manish Kapoor from India was one among the lucky 28 to be granted the American citizenship at the White House in the presence of the US President, Barack Obama.
This was only the fourth naturalisation ceremony hosted by Obama yesterday at the White House; the previous ones being in May 2009, April 2010 and July 2012.
List of 28 service members, who were naturalised at the White House ceremony included three from South Asia - Manish Kapoor, Nazo Raoufi from Afghanistan and Mohammed Hossain from Bangladesh.
Citizens from several other countries like S Korea, China, Phillipines, Ukraine, Jamaica, Palau, Morocco, Mexico, Ethiopia, Peru, South Africa, Colombia, Nigeria, Bolivia, Canada and Nicaragua were among those to be naturalised at the White House ceremony.
US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director Alejandro Mayorkas presented the countries of the candidates for naturalisation and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano delivered the oath of allegiance.
Addressing the new citizens, Obama emphasised on the need of a comprehensive and sensible immigration reform.
"Immigration makes us a stronger. It keeps us vibrant. It keeps us hungry. It keeps us prosperous. It is part of what makes this such a dynamic country. And if we want to keep attracting the best and the brightest that the world has to offer, then we need to do a better job of welcoming them," Obama said at the naturalisation ceremony at the White House.
"We`ve known for years that our immigration system is broken, that we`re not doing enough to harness the talent and ingenuity of all those who want to work hard and find a place here in America. And after avoiding the problem for years, the time has come to fix it once and for all. The time has come for a comprehensive, sensible immigration reform," Obama said in his address to the new American citizens.
The US President said of late there has been bipartisan efforts in this regard.
"The good news is that we`ve seen some real action in Congress. There are bipartisan groups in both the House and the Senate working to tackle this challenge, and I applaud them for that. We are making progress, but we`ve got to finish the job, because this issue is not new," he said.
Obama said that in a bid to fix the problems arising out of the poor immigration system, several white papers and studies have been received and hoped that soon a law would be enacted in this regard.
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