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South Asians' growing interest in Massachusetts politics

The Asiansn in Massachussets are helping the community to participate in the local Govt.

india Updated: Mar 27, 2007 11:17 IST

The rising population of Asians in and around Massachusetts is helping the community to participate in the local government.

Lexington town has seen a significant growth in the Asian-American population in recent years. From 1990 to 2000, the Asian population grew by 76 per cent to 3,310, according to US Census figures.

Across Massachusetts, the Asian population increased 70 per cent over the decade.

"It only makes sense that political involvement will grow along with the population," said Paul Watanabe, director of the Institute for Asian American Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Boston.

In Boxborough, Indian immigrant Keshava Srivastava is chairman of the local finance committee, and in Concord, Steven Ng, a second-generation Chinese-American, was recently named to the board of appeals after serving on the local planning board for six years, according to the Boston Globe newspaper.

Last year, Indian-American Ravi Sakhuja won a seat on the Lexington School Committee.

Lexington is also home to a large Chinese population. A Chinese language school was opened four years ago. It also encourages Chinese-Americans to get involved in town and educational activities.

Last week, the school hosted a programme with town moderator Donald MacKenzie, who discussed the importance of citizen participation in governance.