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Yashwant Raj, Hindustan Times
Washington, May 17, 2013
The US senate judiciary committee on Thursday cleared Srikanth “Sri” Srinivasan’s nomination to the DC circuit, considered as a stepping stone to the Supreme Court. The nomination will now go before the Senate for its clearance, which, indications are, should happen given the 18-0 approval Srinivasan received from the committee.

If cleared, Srinivasan will become the first Indian- American judge at a circuit court, roughly the equivalent of India’s high courts.

More importantly, the appointment is expected to bring him in line for the Supreme Court — four of its current judges, including chief justice John Roberts, are from the DC circuit court.

“I am glad we are moving forward with this fine nominee in a bipartisan way,” senate judiciary committee chairman Patrick Leahy said in a statement.The nomination process hasn’t been without hurdles. President Barack Obama nominated Srinivasan to the DC circuit court a year ago, but his hearing took place only in April this year.

Srinivasan was born in Chandigarh but raised in Kansas City when his parents moved here. He went on to graduate from Stanford University and did a joint law and business masters from Stanford Law School and Stanford Graduate School of Business.

New Yorker magazine has said if “Srinivasan passes this test and wins confirmation, he’ll be on the Supreme Court before President Obama’s term ends”. The Indian-American community is following the nomination process closely. And leading legal lights of the community had shown up for his nomination hearing in April.

“His appointment would be historic for the Indian American and Asian American community,” said Ami Bera, the only Indian-American in the US congress now.