HYDERABAD: Slain Indian engineer Srinivas Kuchibhotla’s widow Sunayana Dumala has sought the support of Bollywood stars- Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan, in her fight against hate crime in the United States.
“Amitabh sir, there was not a party that ended without us dancing to your songs. Our friends used to fondly call us Amitabh and Jaya because my husband is 6’ 2’’ and I am 5 feet. Shah Rukh sir, he was a huge fan of yours, and he made sure we watched your latest movie, Raees. I need all your support to pass this strong message of spreading love and giving confidence to every foreign national (in the US) that their fight will be listened to,” Sunayana said.
Distraught after the death of her husband Srinivas Kuchibhotla, Sunayana Dumala, wrote a blog on Tuesday when the slain Indian engineer’s funeral was held.
In her blog, the young widow shared how they started to like each other after meeting on Orkut, her dream of going to USA, their aspirations of pursuing their passion in the country.
At the end of the blog, she posed a question to the US government, saying, “Lastly, to answer the question that is in every immigrant’s mind, DO WE BELONG HERE? Is this the same country we dreamed of and is it still secure to raise our families and children here?”
In her letter, Sunayana narrated Srinivas’ admiration for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and wished to meet both of them to share his joy, posthumously.
Requesting Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella to continue advocating support for human rights, she said there is a need to spread love and stop hatred.
“This is my first official blog post on Facebook, and it is with a heavy heart that I am writing these words. On the dreadful night of Wednesday, 22 Feb 2017, I lost my husband and my soulmate,” she said. According to Sunayana, the two met way back in August, 2006 through common friends then connected on an online portal called Orkut and started liking each other instantly.
“I am the baby of my house, being the youngest with two elder sisters. I grew up to be a carefree child. It was Srinivas who gave me the courage to pursue my dream of coming to the USA and studying, which made me the person I am today - an independent, self-sufficient and strong woman. I started working only recently, May 2016,” she disclosed.
Srinivas’ passion was to constantly innovate in the the aviation industry. In America, he commenced his career at Rockwell Collins, and he worked On Primary Flight Control Computer that would change the way flights work with improved performances.
There were days he used to come home to have only dinner and leave for work again- only return around 2 or 3 in the morning. He was very happy at Rockwell and liked living in a small town like Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
“But we decided to move from there to a bigger city so that I could get a job and be able to pursue my dreams, as he was able to do for himself. Kansas was our instant choice, and we moved here with a lot of dreams. We built our dream home, which he painted. This was the home that he had built to - for us and any kids we would have- was our first step to starting our family. It’s so unfortunate that this dream of ours is now shattered. All of this, because of one person, who did not think of the impact his deed would have on the victim’s family,” she lamented.
When police came to her house that on that ill-fated night and gave her the news of Srinivas’ life being taken away by a random shooter, she could not believe their words. She asked them repeatedly, “Are you sure?,” “Can you show me a picture to identify?,” “Is the man that you are talking about 6’ 2’’ ?”. Then, they were just nodding their heads saying yes.
She expressed thanks to each one of those who helped her during the hours of crisis, saying, “I thank Garmin and its employees for conducting the vigil. Thanks to Mr Cliff Pemble, the CEO of Garmin. Thanks to Mr Frank, CEO of Intouch Solutions, for assuring me that I can take however long and still come back and continue my job. Thanks to the Detectives and District Attorney Steve for working hard on this case and finding the culprit.”