Washington: Nikki Haley, who resigned as the US Ambassador to the United Nations, has been a great advocate of the India-US relationship and actively engaged with Indian-Americans, according to eminent community members, who believe she would soon emerge in a stronger role given her nationwide popularity.
Haley, the first-ever Indian-American in any presidential cabinet, surprised many when she announced her resignation on Tuesday. US President Donald Trump has accepted the 46-year-old Haley's resignation. She will stay in the job till the year end. Her successor will be nominated and hopefully confirmed by the Senate by that time.
"Nikki Haley has been one the most successful Indian-American politician. She has been relentless supporter of strong US-India partnership," Mukesh Aghi of the US India Strategic and Partnership Forum (USISPF) said.
"We will definitely miss her presence in the current administration where she was seen as a true champion of US-India alliance. We also believe she will re-emerge soon in a stronger position because she has a very bright future," Aghi told PTI.
Silicon Valley-based top Indian-American venture capitalist and philanthropist M R Rangaswami said Haley had actively engaged with the diaspora. "Nikki Haley actively engaged with the Indiaspora community and listened to our issues and helped us. We fondly remember the interaction with her Sikh parents at the dinner we hosted for her in New York," he said. "We wish her well in her future endeavours!" Rangaswami added.
As the highest ranking Indian-American in the Trump Administration, the first Indian-American to hold the position of the UN Ambassador and the first Indian-American woman elected as governor, Haley has served the US with distinction, said the recently formed Indian-American Impact Project, a group of Indian-American philanthropists, community leaders, and political operatives.
"We are proud of her service and leadership, and grateful that she has inspired countless Indian Americans aspiring to careers in public service and foreign service. We wish her the best in her future endeavours," it said. Haley did an outstanding job of representing United States at United Nations, said Dallas-based eminent Indian-American Republican Ashok Mago.
"Wish she had stayed for another couple of years. President admired her outstanding work. She may not be running in 2020 to be president but it is matter of time. Hope eventually she will decide to run may be in 2024," Mago said.
"On behalf of all American Sikhs nationwide, we are proud of Nikki Haley, who was born to Indian Sikh Immigrants, for her work as the 29th United States Ambassador to the United Nations; where she served with great respect and dignity," said Gurinder Singh Khalsa, of the Indiana-based SikhsPAC. "Her steadfast efforts throughout her career have broken barriers for all women. We are extremely proud of her and I personally feel that in the near future she may be the first woman president of the United States," Khalsa said.
"We would like to commend Ambassador Haley on all she has accomplished in so many capacities. We are proud of her and wish her all the best in future endeavors," said Deepak Raj, co-founder of Impact, chairman of Pratham USA and founder of the Raj Centre on Indian Economic Policies at Columbia University.
According to Ranju Batra from New York, Haley has become a role model for women across the world who wish to work to make a better world.
"Personally, as chair of the Diwali Foundation USA, Inc., I'm most grateful to Nikki for having United States of America as a co-sponsor, in addition to 25 other nations, to our 2017 inaugural Diwali - 'Power of One' awards, that recognised six exceptional former Permanent Representatives and high ranking UN leaders," she said.
The daughter of Indian immigrants from Punjab, Haley said she wanted to take a break after nearly eight years of hectic public life including six years as the governor of South Carolina. Born Nimrata "Nikki" Randhawa, Haley is latest Republican to exit the Trump administration.