Will Clinton help free IIT alumnus from US jail?

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New Delhi:  The IIT alumni have joined hands to help B K Subba Rao release his son Vikram Buddhi, an IIT alumnus, who has been in a US jail since 2006 for allegedly posting anti-Bush remarks on a website.

Vikram, a PhD student at Purdue University in Indiana, has been accused of posting messages on an internet website that called for the assassination of then American president George W Bush.

The IIT alumni will meet Bill Clinton in Chicago next week as partof the largest entrepreneurship conference of PAN IITs, during whichthey plan to raise Vikram's case.

"We talk aboutpreserving our best brains and then let them languish away like that.His career has been ruined. He was the brightest. They do not even havethe time to indulge in these things," says Somnath Bharti, an IITalumni member.

The IIT alumni also hope to put pressure on the Indian government to take up the matter.

They met CPI leader D Raja, urging him to take the case to the Prime Minister.

"Theycame to me for help. And I think what they are saying is genuine. Ihave assured them that I will take it up with the Prime Minister," saysD Raja.

Vikaram's father B K Subba Rao, a former Navy captain, has written three letters to the Indian government and two letters to President Obama and the U S Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, pleading for his son's release. But his efforts have gone in vain.

Foreign Minister S M Krishna has also assured Vikram Buddhi's family that the Indian mission in the US would look into his case.

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But for his family, words mean little. Vikram has been suspended from Purdue University and could face up to 35 years in jail.

"We are not asking for mercy. We are asking for a fair trial. But the system there does not even allow that," says his father.

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