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Tamil Nadu:  Kamala Harris ancestral village celebrates her oath-taking

As Kamala Harris inked history on Wednesday by becoming the first woman, first Black and first South Asian American to become the vice-president of the United States, her ancestral village in Tamil Nadu celebrated loud cheers, laps and firecrackers as she took oath.

As Kamala Harris inked history on Wednesday by becoming the first woman, first Black and first South Asian American to become the vice-president of the United States, her ancestral village in Tamil Nadu celebrated with loud cheers, claps and firecrackers as she took oath.

Kamala Harris was on Wednesday sworn in as America’s first woman Vice President during a historic inauguration at the West Front of the Capitol.

Harris, 56, the 49th US Vice President, will serve as the deputy of President Joe Biden, 78, who also took the oath of office, becoming the 46th US President.

Locals in Thulasendrapuram, the remote village Tamil Nadu where Harris’ maternal grandparents belong to, celebrated with full fervour and zeal as she took oath vice-president of the US on Wednesday.

Kamala Harris took over the office of the US Vice President from 61-year-old Mike Pence, while Biden succeeded Donald Trump.

In her first tweet as Vice President from her official Twitter handle, she said: “Ready to serve.”

Harris, the daughter of an Indian immigrant from Chennai, scripted history by becoming the first-ever woman Vice President of the United States. She is also the first female, first Black and first South Asian American vice president.

Her husband Douglas Emhoff, 56, is the first ‘Second Gentleman’ – the first male spouse of a vice president in the US.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina member of the Supreme Court, administered the oath of office to Harris.

She was sworn in on two Bibles – one that belonged to a close family friend named Regina Shelton and another that belonged to Thurgood Marshall – the country’s first African American Supreme Court justice.

M R Rangaswami, Indiaspora founder said: “I had goose bumps when I saw an Indian American woman take the oath as Vice President of the USA! Only here can a daughter of an Indian immigrant achieve her dream and much more. She is such an inspiration for my daughters and so many other young girls across the country!”

Harris is the daughter of an Indian mother and African-American father from Jamaica.

She was born in Oakland, California, in 1964, to parents who raised her in a bassinet of civil rights activism.

Her mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris from Chennai, was a breast cancer researcher who died of cancer in 2009. Harris’ father, Donald, is a Jamaican American professor of economics.

On the campaign trail, Harris often talked about how her activist parents would push her in her stroller at civil rights marches. The couple divorced in 1972.

Harris grew up in the Bay Area but took frequent trips to India to visit extended family. At 12, she and her sister, Maya, moved with their mother to Montreal, where Gopalan Harris had secured a teaching post at McGill University as well as a research position at the Jewish General Hospital.

After graduating from Howard in 1986 for her undergraduate degree and from the University of California’s Hastings College of the Law in 1989, Harris passed the bar the following year and joined the Alameda County prosecutor’s office as an assistant district attorney. From there, she began her political ascent.

In 2003, Harris won her first race for San Francisco district attorney, becoming the first Black woman to hold such an office in California. In 2010, she became the first Black woman elected as California attorney general, and in 2016, she became only the second Black woman ever elected as a US senator.

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