Democratic candidate for Cook County Circuit (8th Subcircuit (Pethers Vacancy district)
Responses to our questions
Please submit an essay that explains your legal background, why you are qualified for this position and why you seek this position.
I have been proud to build a diversity of professional and community based experiences. I have handled approximately 100 trials including over 20 jury trials.
I have represented clients in murder, attempted murder, and other felony matters. I have also represented clients in multi-million dollar matters, divorce cases, landlord/tenant matters, and a range of other cases. This diversity of legal experience will serve me well on the bench. I have also been very active in the legal and general community.
Currently, I serve as a parent member of the South Loop Elementary Local School Council, coach the debate team at South Loop, serve as Secretary for the Indo-American Center on Devon, and chair a parent group at South Loop. Previously, I was a President of the Asian American Bar Association and Indian American Bar Association.
These efforts have given me the opportunity to learn from people from all parts of our community. This opportunity and ability to be exposed to and gain an understanding of different people and different cultures will serve me well as a Judge.
In addition to the above leadership positions, I have volunteered on a pro bono basis to represent clients. Recently, I represented Inderjit Mukker (a victim a hate crime in Dupage County) as his Victim's Advocate during the prosecution of his assailant. Additionally, I have represented individuals that were wrongfully arrested for bringing religious items into government buildings, victims of domestic abuse, and I also helped re-start a pro bono legal clinic at the Indo-American Center.
I have and always will devote whatever time and support I can to members of our community. I believe my legal/litigation experience, leadership roles, and community work have given me the skills necessary to succeed as Judge. Most importantly, given the challenges in our community today and with all the division, it is so important that people have confidence in our judges.
A party will not always agree with a judge's ruling. But, we need to elect judges that, not only due to their legal experience, but also because of their community and personal background, can engender the confidence that the decisions they are making are coming from a good place.
Tell us something we would be surprised to learn about you.
My commitment to service and the community comes from my family history -- my Paternal Grandfather and Maternal Great-Grandfather participated in the non-violent Gandhi independence movement in India. In fact, they were so active, they were jailed for months at a time. They were committed to obtaining freedom for their country and to do so in an honorable way. Even after independence, both men either started their own organization or contributed significant time to serving the community. It has been important to me to continue in this tradition of leadership and service. I cannot imagine any more honorable and meaningful way to do so then as Judge.