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Widow of Indian national Srinivas Kuchibhotla nearly gets deported

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Srinivas Kuchibhotla was shot dead in Kansas in a hate crime incident. He worked as an Aviation Programs Engineer in a Kansas-based technology company. 

Sunayana Dumala, wife of Kansas shooting victim Srinivas Kuchibhotla (Credit: Kansas City Star)

Sunayana Dumala, the wife of Srinivas Kuchibhotla who was killed in February this year at a bar in Kansas, almost got deported as her legal status to live in the country expired following the death of her husband.

Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) helped to get her a temporary work permit.

“When Sunayana lost her status, to me it really added insult to injury,” said Yoder, NBC News reported.

Yonder told the media house that he has been in communication with Dumala and met her a few times, and recently in Washington, DC. She was part of the Indian immigrants’ group that came in support of Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, whose key sponsor is Yoder.

The legislation aims to reform the existing system of granting green cards as per the country-wise percentage cap.

“Under the existing per-country percentage caps, large nations like India and China, which account for more than 40 percent of the world’s population, receive the same amount of visas as Greenland, a country that accounts for one-one thousandth of a percent of the world’s population,” Yoder said in a press statement in July.

He said that the reform would enable skilled workers from larger countries to get the green cards in lesser time.

“Had this legislation passed a few years ago, Sunayana and her husband would have had green cards and permanent residency,” Yoder said, NBC News reported.

In May, Yoder helped Dumala get a work authorization document. She is applying for an H-1B and a nonimmigrant U visa, which is for crime victims.

“We have to go above and beyond in our efforts as a country to make sure that people from India know they are welcome here, that the shooting that happened in Kansas does not reflect the values of the American people,” Yoder said.