Jagan writes to Jaishankar for probe into death of Andhra student in US
Amaravati, Sep 15 (IANS) Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has urged External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar to communicate with his US counterpart to probe the circumstances leading to the death of a student from the state in a road accident and the video clip of a police officer ridiculing the incident.
The Chief Minister wrote that a video of the police officer who is investigating the death of Jaahnavi Kandula was released by the Seattle Police Department wherein it showed that an officer was “ridiculing the death along with passing comments of limiting the value of the life of an innocent student”.
“This type of inhumane behavior of such officers against non-Americans should be condemned and strict action should be recommended against erring police officers to instill a sense of confidence and assurance among the Indians in America.
“I request you to personally intervene in this matter by communicating with your counterpart in the United States and urging for an independent and thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding this unfortunate incident. It is of utmost importance that the truth be uncovered and justice be served,” he wrote.
Kandula, a 23-year-old student from Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh, was killed on January 25 in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood after she was hit by a police vehicle driven by Seattle police officer Kevin Dave. Bodycam footage of a Seattle cop joking about her death has leaked, triggering an outrage. India has urged the US to conduct a thorough investigation.
In a video released by the Seattle Police Department on September 11, a cop can be heard joking and laughing while discussing the accident. In the clip, Seattle Police Officers’ Guild Vice President Daniel Auderer, in a call with the guild’s president, can be heard saying, “She is dead” before bursting out into laughter and calling Kandula “a regular person”.
He further said, through bursts of laughter, “Yeah, just write a check. Eleven thousand dollars.” The clip ends with him saying: “She was 26 anyway, she had limited value”, getting her age wrong.
Hailing from Adoni town in Kurnool, she was a master’s student at Northeastern University’s Seattle campus. She had gone to the US in 2021 and was pursuing her Master’s degree in Information Systems. Her graduation was expected by December next.