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Diplomat’s arrest: India may review immunity to US officials,recalls all ID cards

India has asked US to return all identity cards issued to their consular officers posted here.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: January 9, 2014 4:33:14 pm

Taking a tough stand over the arrest of its diplomat,Devyani Khobragade,in America,India has asked US to return all identity cards issued to their consular officers posted in the country. According to sources,the move may be a precursor to reviewing immunity and benefits enjoyed by US consular officers in India.

This comes even as the US has expressed hope that the diplomatic row won’t affect ties between the two countries.

The 1999-batch IFS officer was taken into custody on Thursday last as she was dropping her daughter to school and handcuffed in public on visa fraud charges before being released on a USD 250,000 bond after pleading not guilty.

Khobragade’s arrest,only a day after Indian Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh concluded her highly successful Washington trip,caused a major diplomatic crisis between India and the US.

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Lodging a strong protest against the arrest of of Deputy Consul General in New York,India has conveyed to the US that such a kind of a treatment to its diplomat is “absolutely unacceptable”.

“It was conveyed in no uncertain terms that this kind of treatment to one of our diplomats is absolutely unacceptable,” the Indian Embassy said in a statement on Friday after the Charge d’Affaires Taranjit Singh Sandhu met senior officials of the US State Department.

Singh also asked the US officials to resolve the matter at the earliest during the meeting.

In Delhi,Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh summoned US Ambassador Nancy Powell to convey India’s “shock” over “absolutely unacceptable” treatment meted out to the senior Indian diplomat.

(With PTI Inputs)

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