Mississippi finally abolishes slavery officially — thanks to Indian-American professor

Published: February 20, 2013

VANCOUVER DESI/IANS

Dr. Ranjan Batra

Dr. Ranjan Batra, associate professor of neurobiology and anatomical sciences at the University of Mississippi Medical Centre, started looking into states ratifying the 13th Amendment after watching Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln.” Screengrab/MSNBC

Better late than never.

The curiosity of an Indian-American professor has led to slavery officially being abolished across the United States — 148 years after U.S. President Abraham Lincoln’s emancipation declaration.

The state of Mississippi finally ratified the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery only earlier this month, due in great measure to Dr. Ranjan Batra, associate professor of neurobiology and anatomical sciences at the University of Mississippi Medical Centre.

Batra, who became a U.S. citizen in 2008, last November started looking into states ratifying the amendment after watching Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln,” an Oscar-nominated film which depicts the political fight to pass it, according to The Clarion Ledger, a state newspaper.

As Batra learnt from the usconstitution.net website, after Congress voted for the 13th Amendment in January 1864, the measure went to the states for ratification.

On Dec 6, 1865, the amendment received the three-fourths’ vote it needed when Georgia became the 27th state to ratify it. States that rejected the measure included Delaware, Kentucky, New Jersey and Mississippi.

In the months and years that followed, states continued to ratify the amendment, including those that had initially rejected it. New Jersey ratified the amendment in 1866, Delaware in 1901 and Kentucky in 1976.

But there was an asterisk beside Mississippi. A note read: “Mississippi ratified the amendment in 1995, but because the state never officially notified the U.S. Archivist, the ratification is not official.”

Batra, according to the Clarion Ledger, then told colleague Ken Sullivan who called the National Archives’ Office of the Federal Register to inform them that Mississippi was yet to ratify the 13th Amendment.

Sullivan was able to retrieve a copy of a 1995 Senate resolution, which passed both the Mississippi House and Senate, that ratified the amendment to abolish slavery, but it was never sent to the Office of the Federal Register.

Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann sent the Office of the Federal Register a copy of the 1995 Senate bill and on Feb. 7, Mississippi finally ratified the 13th Amendment.

“Now it’s officially filed and recorded,” Sullivan told the Clarion Ledger. “There’s no asterisk by Mississippi any more.”

“Mississippi gets a lot of bad press about this type of stuff and I just felt that it is something that should be fixed, and I saw every reason that could be done,” Batra told ABC News.

“Everyone here would like to put this part of Mississippi’s past behind us and move on into the 21st century rather than the 19th,” he said.

Sullivan also remarked on the unlikely pairing of an immigrant from India and a life-long southerner working together to resolve the oversight.

“You have Dr. Batra, who is the immigrant and me who is the native-born, life-long resident of Mississippi, it was a unique pair,” he said.

IANS 2013-02-20 15:04:04

[+]

Tags: , , , ,





Featured

desi-crime-sexual assault

Surrey man who pleaded guilty to mistreating sex trade workers should go to prison for 2-3 years: Crown

KEITH FRASER VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — A Surrey man who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 14-year-old sex trade worker nearly 20 years ago and…
Continue Reading »

sexual harassment

‘Will you have fun with me?’: Immigration officer sexually harasses female passenger at Delhi airport

HINDUSTAN TIMES An immigration officer at the Delhi airport has been suspended after a female passenger complained that he sexually harassed her by asking obscene…
Continue Reading »

crime-Surrey

Two Surrey men in hospital with gunshot wounds after targeted shooting

VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Two men are in hospital with gunshot wounds following what appears to be a targeted shooting in Surrey on Thursday night….
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

desi-crime-sexual assault

Surrey man who pleaded guilty to mistreating sex trade workers should go to prison for 2-3 years: Crown

KEITH FRASER VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — A Surrey man who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 14-year-old sex trade worker nearly 20 years ago and…
Continue Reading »

Changes to Nova Scotia law allow sex assault victims to sue retroactively

By Keith Doucette THE CANADIAN PRESS HALIFAX — Nova Scotians who have been sexually assaulted can now launch civil lawsuits against their perpetrators regardless of…
Continue Reading »

Changes to Nova Scotia law allow sex assault victims to sue retroactively

By Keith Doucette THE CANADIAN PRESS HALIFAX — Nova Scotians who have been sexually assaulted can now launch civil lawsuits against their perpetrators regardless of…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

World Cup final

Underarm incident recalled as Australia-New Zealand rivalry rekindles in World Cup final

STEVE MCMORRAN THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MELBOURNE, Australia — Relations between New Zealand and Australia at a political level have regained their natural cordiality in the…
Continue Reading »

Cricket World Cup

Clarke’s Australians prepare to take on unpopular role in the World Cup final vs New Zealand

JOHN PYE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MELBOURNE, Australia — Win or lose, Michael Clarke and his Australian teammates are probably going to be portrayed as the…
Continue Reading »

India-Australia-weird news

Youth cut his tongue as sacrifice at an Indian temple for nation’s cricket victory

IANS Chennai – In a senseless act, a cricket crazy youth in Tamil Nadu offered the tip of his tongue as a sacrifice at a…
Continue Reading »

Freedom-Section 66A-India

Teenager shoots himself after father bans Facebook chat

IANS Lucknow - A 14-year-old boy shot himself Thursday after his father reprimanded him for chatting too often on social networking site Facebook, police said. The…
Continue Reading »

messy custody battle-desi lingerie model

Jeremy Renner’s messy divorce from B.C. model gets messier as custody battle rages

VANCOUVER DESI A B.C. woman who was married to Hollywood actor Jeremy Renner is being accused of being a gold digger and blackmailer who has…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

pakistani sex meera-Veena Malik

Gallery: Bollywood celebs in trouble with the law

ALMAS MEHERALLY VANCOUVER DESI Indian film actress Shruti Haasan has run into legal trouble after she pulled out of a signed contract, according to an…
Continue Reading »

Salman Khan-Bollywood

Bollywood actor Salman Khan denies he was driving or drunk during 2002 accident

IANS Mumbai – Bollywood actor Salman Khan on Friday told a Mumbai court, conducting the trial of the 2002 hit-and-run case involving him, that he…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood movie

Amitabh Bachchan: Balki challenges me with never-done-before roles

SUBHASH K. JHA IANS Mumbai – R. Balakrishnan and Amitabh Bachchan’s much anticipated third outing “Shamitabh” turned out to be a box office disaster, but…
Continue Reading »