India takes retaliatory steps against US for arrest of its diplomat

Eurasia News

NEW DELHI: The Indian government took a series of retaliatory measures against the United States over the arrest of one of its diplomats in New York, a move that will lead to further escalation in tensions between two major countries, Dispatch News Desk reported.

The move came after India’s deputy consul general in New York Devyani Khobragade was arrested, handcuffed and strip-searched last week for submitting false documents to obtain a work visa for her Manhattan housekeeper.

In response, the Indian external minister Salman Khurshid called the treatment of Devyani Khobragade humiliating and completely unacceptable.

A senior official of the Indian ministry of external affairs said on condition of anonymity that they had ordered the withdrawal of all ID cards that were issued by the Ministry of External Affairs to the officials at the US consulates across India. The Indian government also imposed a ban on import clearances for the US diplomats as well as canceling airport clearances for US officials in India.

Moreover, the Indian security forces removed the traffic barricades near the US Embassy in New Delhi that had been erected as a safety measure and a visiting US delegation was snubbed.

Meanwhile, top Indian politicians refused to meet with a US Congressional delegation over the arrest.

Narendra Modi, India’s opposition candidate for the position of prime minister, said that he along with other top politicians had declined the meeting with the five-member US team due to the detention of India’s deputy consul general.

 India takes retaliatory steps against US for arrest of its diplomat

The 39-year-old Devyani Khobragade was arrested and handcuffed on Thursday as she dropped off her daughter at school, and kept in a cell with drug addicts before posting $250,000 bail, the Indian officials said.

A senior Indian official said that she was also strip-searched, which was portrayed in India as the most offensive and troubling part of the arrest.