Indian-American leaders dismiss Trump’s DACA decision, 15 states challenge it

US President Donald Trump’s decision of scrapping the programme that grants work permits to immigrants who arrived in the country illegally as children, has created a stir among people, including Indian-origin leaders. 15 states in the US and the District of Columbia joined together yesterday to challenge the Trump administration’s decision to wind down the programme, Deferred Action for Children Arrival (DACA).

Congress leader Pramila Jayapal (left) and Representative Ro Khanna.
Congress leader Pramila Jayapal (left) and Representative Ro Khanna. Photo courtesy: Twitter official pages

Representative Ro Khanna issued the following statement in response to the Trump Administration announcing a wind down of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

“Since 2012, nearly 800,000 young people who immigrated to this country have had the opportunity to go to school, gain employment, and continue on with their lives minus the fear of deportation. Today, the Trump Administration once again shows it has no dignity for our friends, neighbours, and colleagues. We must safeguard the livelihood of DREAMers and provide these inspiring young people and their courageous parents a pathway to citizenship,” Khanna wrote on his official page.

Congress leader Pramila Jayapal has also issued an op-ed stating, “Deporting the dreamers would be a betrayal of our American values.”

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced the legal action at a rally where he characterised President Trump's rollback of DACA, the Obama-era DACA program, as "cruel, short-sighted, inhumane and potentially devastating" to young immigrants known as DREAMers who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

The Trump administration's Tuesday decision to phase out the programme effectively kicks the immigrants' fate to Congress, which now has six months to find a permanent legislative fix for a programme created five years ago in an executive order by President Obama.

The 15 states joining in the lawsuit are – New York, Massachusetts, Washington, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia.