New York State Senator joins sports groups to celebrate India’s Independence Day

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New York State Senator Kevin Thomas, center wearing jeans, attended the Independence Cup 2021 Badminton Tournament in Long Island Aug. 14, 2021, celebrating India’s Independence Day. Photo courtesy Office of the Senator Kevin Thomas.

New York State Senator Kevin Thomas attended the Independence Cup 2021 Badminton Tournament at the Long Island Badminton Center on Saturday, August 14, to celebrate India’s Independence Day.

Teams from New York, Texas, Virginia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut participated in the high-level Men’s Doubles tournament, which was organized by Shalin Shah and Sarat Vadada. 

State Sen. Thomas was joined by fellow Senator Todd Kaminsky for the New York Malayalee Sports Club for the 33rd Kairali Cup Soccer Tournament on Saturday, August 14 at the Rockville Sports Complex.

New York Senator Kevin Thomas, center on the white line, with Sen. Todd Kaminsky at the 33rd Kairali Cup Soccer Tournament Aug. 14, 2021. Photo: Photo courtesy: Office of Senator Kevin Thomas.

The only Indian-American Senator in the NY State legislature, Sen. Thomas has been a champion of cricket as well, pushing for legislation to make it a part of the budget funding for various sports.

Back in early 2019, Sen. Thomas, introduced a bill to create an “Empire State Cricket Board,” justifying it on the grounds of the multicultural nature of the state and the many people interested in, and playing the game, in parks around the state.

The goal of the legislation, he said at that time, was to “promote and grow the game of cricket in New York State.” His efforts were directed toward getting cricket included in the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) list.

In an interview in July 2020 with Desi Talk, Sen. Thomas noted that Indian-Americans and South Asians were among the fastest growing ethnic groups in New York state, and “As the second-most popular sport in the world, cricket brings with it a massive audience and economic development opportunities, and many communities across New York are already embracing cricket.”

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