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India-US diplomat row escalates

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Security barricades were removed from outside the US embassy in Delhi

India has ordered a series of reprisals against the United States amid a worsening row over the arrest of one of its diplomats in New York.

Security barricades around the US embassy in Delhi have been removed and a visiting US delegation was snubbed.

The diplomat, Devyani Khobragade, was handcuffed upon arrest last week and strip-searched, Indian reports say.

She denies visa fraud and making false statements over allegations that she underpaid her Indian maid.

The maid had complained the diplomat was paying her less than the minimum stipulated under US visa requirements.

US officials say standard procedures were followed during the arrest of Ms Khobragade, who appeared in court on Friday and was freed on bail.

Ms Khobragade will challenge her arrest on grounds of diplomatic immunity, her lawyer said.

The US state department said that Ms Khobragade does not have full diplomatic immunity.

It said under the UN's Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, she is immune from arrest only for crimes committed in connection with her work.

India's government has said it is "shocked and appalled" at the manner in which Ms Khobragade, its deputy consul general in New York, was "humiliated" in the US.

On Tuesday, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde called her treatment unacceptable. He cancelled his meeting with the senior US Congressional delegation and his office said he was busy in parliament, but media reports in India described it as a "snub" to the US.

The governing Congress party Vice-President, Rahul Gandhi, and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi also refused to meet the delegations.

"Refused to meet the visiting USA delegation in solidarity with our nation, protesting ill-treatment meted to our diplomat in USA," Mr Modi tweeted.

On Monday, the Speaker of India's parliament, Meira Kumar, and National Security Adviser Shiv Shankar Menon had also refused to meet the Congressional officials.

Mr Menon said Ms Khobragade's treatment was "despicable and barbaric".

Reports in India said American diplomats and their families in India will have airport passes withdrawn and duty free arrangements suspended.

One official said US diplomats' gay partners may also be liable to arrest for breaching Indian laws against homosexuality.

...

Ms Khobragade, 39, was arrested last Thursday in New York and later freed on a $250,000 (£153,000) bond after pleading not guilty to the charges. Some reports in India said she was arrested while dropping her daughter at school and was handcuffed in public.

Latest media reports said she had been "subjected to a humiliating strip search and kept in a cell with drug addicts".

Law enforcement authorities in New York say Ms Khobragade "allegedly caused a materially false and fraudulent document to be presented, and materially false and fraudulent statements to be made, to the US Department of State in support of a visa application for an Indian national employed as a babysitter and housekeeper at her home in New York".

State department deputy spokesperson Marie Harf told reporters at a news conference on Monday: "Diplomatic security, which is under the state department purview, followed standard procedures during her arrest."

If found guilty, Ms Khobragade faces a maximum sentence of 10 years for visa fraud and five years for making false statements.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-25411876

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I'd bang her. smile.png

And a photo of the diplomat:

devyani-kobragade_1.jpg


She has purty lips.

Here's another picture.

4faPMeF.jpg

What I find slightly amusing is that the Indians are saying they may go after American consular members with homosexual partners seeing how gay sex is criminal there again.

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Al-Jazeera:

Scrambling to douse India’s anger over its diplomat’s arrest, the United States has indicated it will review the official’s detention.

...

The US government will move quickly to make sure that the kind of arrest and treatment the Indian diplomat had to endure would not be repeated, the reports said.

...

Khobragade was arrested on the grounds that she had not given complete information in the visa application for her domestic help. Also, she was accused of paying the domestic help wages that are less than the mandatory minimum in the US.

Ironically, the wages that Khobragade would need to pay the domestic help as per US laws would amount to more than the diplomat’s own salary.

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If she committed the visa fraud she's accused of and was arrested for, she is a common criminal, hot or not. She doesn't have immunity in this case, as the Vienna convention doesn't cover visa fraud. But I'm guessing pretty soon the charges will be dropped and she'll return to India. Meanwhile I wonder what the hell happened to this nanny's husband and child, who were taken into custody while negotiations over her return to India were discussed. Hmm...


"If you’re brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello."

- Paulo Coelho

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She is cute, however, if she didn't have enough money to pay someone more than 3 freaking dollars a day why did she bring over a servant to begin with? It reminds me of how the Saudis treat the Sri Lankans that are there. Such horrible and poor conditions and they never receive the salaries they were supposed to receive.

The world is such a sad place.

India is making too much of a stink over this. She allegedly broke the law. Chill out.

Edited by Janelle2002

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I was watching an Indian cable news show on ndtv.com and some pundits are alleging the government of India is blowing this up into a big deal because the opposition leader has been hogging up all the air time and they wanted to have a few news cycles of the ruling party doing something.

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