Indian-American mulling run for public office in California

Houston: Indian-American Neel Kashkari, a former US Treasury official who oversaw department's troubled Asset Relief Program at the height of country's financial crisis is considering a run for public office in California as a Republican.

Kashkari, 39, announced yesterday that he is stepping down from his job as management director for Pacific Investment Management Co (PIMCO), a Newport Beach investment firm.

The former Goldman Sachs banker expressed an interest in entering public service in California in multiple interviews published today and has launched a website touting his biography and leadership bona fides.

Kashkari, whose parents Chaman and Sheila Kashkari are Indian-Americans from Kashmir, said, "I'm not the typical California Republican. I'm the son of immigrants."

Kashkari told the Wall Street Journal. "I come from modest upbringing. I have a successful track record. I'm an optimist. And I think something can be done if people work together."

Kashkari was a key figure in implementing the USD 700 billion bank bailout effort, known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program, during President George W Bush's second term.

He stayed at the department for the start of Barack Obama's presidency before leaving to join Pimco in 2009.